Sorry Not Sorry

Album: Tell Me You Love Me (2017)
Charted: 9 6

Songfacts®:

  • The lead single from Demi Lovato's sixth studio album is a savage girl-power anthem about rising above those trying to bring you down. Speaking to Amazon, Lovato said:

    "'Sorry Not Sorry' is a song basically to the haters, it is basically saying 'I am good now, I am sorry I am not sorry that you may not be loving where your life is at the moment.' It is s just a song about the haters."
  • Demi Lovato wrote the song with:

    Warren "Oak" Felder who together with his frequent songwriting partner, Andrew "Pop" Wansel, has produced several of Nicki Minaj's singles including "Your Love" and "Right By My Side." His other credits range from Alessia Cara's consecutive hits "Here" and "Scars to Your Beautiful" to Usher's "Good Kisser" and Tory Lanez's "Say It." Felder also handled the production on this track.

    Downtown Trevor Brown and Zaire Koalo, who are two of Oak Felder's producers. They also co-penned the tracks "Everything Is Yours" and "Escape" for Kehlani's SweetSexySavage album.

    Sean Douglas, who also co-wrote Demi Lovato's Top 10 hit "Heart Attack." His other credits include Jason DeRulo's "Talk Dirty" and "Wiggle."
  • The song's music video was directed by Hannah Lux Davis (who also shot the clip for "Cool For The Summer"). The entire visual was shot during a wild house party Lovato hosted in Los Angeles, which seems to have featured plenty of dancing, making out and a bubble bath. It includes cameos from Jamie Foxx, Wiz Khalifa, Paris Hilton and a few of the singer's best friends.

    Demi Lovato told MTV News correspondent Gaby Wilson she recruited the celeb cameos via text messages. "I thought Paris would be, like, awesome to be the DJ," she explained. "Wiz is a friend of mine - we go to the same gym - and then Jamie Foxx, I had just been over to his house for a party. And so I was like, I'd love for you to be in my video, and he is so freakin' funny, so having him in it was a blast."
  • The song's title was inspired by a comment made by Oak Felder's wife to him just before his songwriting session with Lovato. He recalled to Songwriter Universe:

    "Early that morning, I was on the phone with my wife. I live in Atlanta [with her] but I work in Los Angeles. I'm in Atlanta for two weeks at a time and then I'm in L.A. for two weeks. We were in the process of buying a house, and you know, that can be a little stressful. So my wife and I were having tense words on the phone. I wouldn't say it was an argument, but it wasn't a great conversation (laughs). And she said something that ticked me off. She said 'You know what, it would be a lot easier to figure this out if we weren't talking on the phone.' And I'm saying, 'Come on baby, I'm working, you can't be mad at me for working…I really don't appreciate that statement…I think you should apologize.' And she said, 'I am not apologetic about that at all. I'm sorry that you feel that way but I'm not sorry' (laughs). Then I said, 'What did you just say?' She said, 'I'm sorry but I'm not sorry.' And I was like, 'Yes! Thank you for that!' Then I said, 'Let me call you back.'

    I wrote down that concept in my phone, and when we met that day with Demi Lovato, I blurted it out: "Why don't we write a song called 'Sorry Not Sorry'." And she connected to it. It connected specifically for her, because there's a lot of things in her past that people are looking for her to be apologetic for. And there's a lot of improvement that she's done to herself, to being a confident, beautiful woman. And she's not apologetic about working on herself and getting her stuff together. So I think the concept connected to her instantaneously. And when we started writing, Demi was instrumental in creating the structure—she was 100% the force behind writing a lot of the ideas of the record. And then of course Sean Douglas, a good friend of mine and a great songwriter, offered to help us knock it out, and that's how that song came together."
  • The music video was inspired by a house party that Lovato threw where several rappers turned up and started smoking pot. She recalled during an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon:

    "One day I was like, 'I want to have people over.' I had just gone through a break-up, I was like, 'I'm newly single. I want to meet people' I called my friend Dave-O, and I was like, 'Dave-O, just invited people over.' He was like, 'OK.'"

    "All of a sudden, a couple hours later, Snoop Dogg was there ... French Montana was there, and Ty Dolla $ign and Wiz Khalifa," Lovato continued. "And all these people were there, and I was like, 'Wait a second, I just wanted to have like a couple people over to hang out.' And all of a sudden, my house was filled with pot smoke everywhere. ... I was like, 'No smoking inside! Get out! Get out!'"

    "I was going to tell Snoop not to smoke in my house," Lovato added. "So, I was like, 'OK, Snoop, do what you want.' And then my chef came in the next morning and was like, 'Smells like Snoop Dogg was here.' And I was like, 'No, he literally was!'"
  • "Sorry Not Sorry" was written by Demi Lovato for herself rather than being directed at an ex. She explained to NPR's Alisa Chang:

    "I was thinking about the bullies that bullied me in school, and how well I'm doing in my life today, and how I don't give a flying f--k about it. I've spent so many years apologizing for my behavior and for the person that I used to be, so now I no longer am apologizing for who I was."

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