This disco-inspired track finds Dua Lipa full of positivity following a breakup:
You know how
Don't start caring
About me now
The jealous ex just can't stand the fact that the singer is over their relationship. Dua Lipa tells him he's better off staying away rather than seeing her dancing with somebody else. "It's about moving on," Lipa told Radio.com. "It's about finding confidence in that and not letting anyone get in the way of your happiness. I think it's always important to remember that your happiness should come first."
The song was released on October 31, 2019 as the lead single from Dua Lipa's second studio album. The adrenaline-fueled, dance floor anthem is a new sound for the singer. "I chose to put this song out first so I could close one chapter of my life and start another," she explained. "Into a new era with a new sound!"
Dua Lipa penned "Don't Start Now" with songwriters Emily Warren and Caroline Ailin, plus producer Ian Kirkpatrick. This was the same crew she made "New Rules
Aren't you the guy who tried to
Hurt me with the word "goodbye"?
Though it took some time to survive you
The post-breakup motivational anthem nods lyrically to Gloria Gaynor's 1978 dance hit "I Will Survive
." (Gaynor sings, "Weren't you the one who tried to hurt me with goodbye?") There are also similarities in the sound: both songs use disco-inflected strings.
When the coronavirus forced most of the world into quarantine in 2020, memes emerged using this song's lyrics to echo recommendations from the CDC:
Don't show up
Don't come out
The Future Nostalgia album was released on March 27, 2020, when the outbreak had taken hold, but the song was issued as a single before coronavirus was detected.
Speaking on Live with Kelly and Ryan Wednesday, Dua Lipa spoke about how the song shifted from a motivational breakup tune to an anthem for the social-distancing era. "I definitely didn't plan for my music to be so fitting for a time like this," she said. "I definitely, while making it, imagined being able to go out and dance and party, but, um, you know - kitchen dancing. And if it's rules to live by at a time like that now then I'm happy for it."
"Don't Start Now" spent 25 weeks in the Top 10 of the UK singles chart, the longest run ever for a song by a British female solo artist.
Lipa performed this on the Grammy Awards in 2021, where it was nominated for Song Of The Year. It lost to "I Can't Breathe
" by H.E.R., but Future Nostalgia
won for Best Pop Vocal Album.