There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back

Album: Illuminate (2017)
Charted: 4 6
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • This song finds Shawn Mendes singing about a relationship that's helping him to feel free to be himself:

    Oh, I've been shaking
    I love it when you go crazy
    You take all my inhibitions
    Baby, there's nothing holding me back

    This girl makes Shawn feel so excited, especially when she's acting crazy, he stops feeling self-conscious and is willing to be taken to places he's never been.
  • Shawn Mendes wrote the song with:

    New York-based musician Scott Harris, who had 10 songs on Shawn Mendes' debut album Handwritten, including the hit tune "Life of the Party" and another ten songs on the Canadian star's sophomore LP Illuminate including the lead single "Treat You Better."

    New York singer-songwriter Teddy Geiger, who co-wrote "Stitches" with Daniel Parker and Daniel "Daylight" Kyriakides. Geiger's other credits include One Direction's Midnight Memories track "Little Black Dress" and Four cut "Where Do Broken Hearts Go." Geiger also produced "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back."

    Geoff Warburton, who is the brother of one of Shawn's best friends, Ian. Warburton contributed to the writing of four Handwritten tracks and nine Illuminate cuts.
  • The song's music video finds Shawn Mendes canoodling with a girl in a variety of romantic locations. His love interest is played by English actress Ellie Bamber, whose resumé also includes roles in the movies Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Nocturnal Animals.
  • The song isn't about a real-life girl in Shawn's life - it's about a character on screen. "I was reading a movie script that I was possibly going to be in and the girl who 'my character' kind of falls in love with, I actually really loved, like I really liked the character," the singer admitted in a video interview.

    He added: "I wrote the song about her [the character]. So it's not a real girl, that one isn't a real girl."
  • This won Best Song at the 2017 MTV EMAs. Shawn also took home the prizes for Best Artist and Biggest Fans.
  • The song won Single of the Year at the 2018 Juno Awards - Canada's answer to the Grammys. Shawn Mendes also picked up the Fan Choice award at the same ceremony.
  • The majority of this song was penned by the four writers through text. "That was an interesting one," Geoff Warburton recalled to Billboard. "I remember Shawn was playing this rocky chord progression and was just starting to have this growl in his voice. He sent us a voice memo with the melody and we thought it was awesome, so we put some lyrics to it."
  • The initial lyrics were based around the concept of energy, before being later rewritten once they convened in a studio. "We brought that one to life when we got together and wrote the final lyrics in an hour or two," Warburton said. "The next day, Shawn wanted to add a riff in for the beginning. He had a 6-string ukulele he had just bought so we were jamming out on it, and that really added a lot to it."
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