(Just Like) Starting Over
|"(Just Like) Starting Over"|
|Single by John Lennon|
|from the album Double Fantasy|
|B-side||"Kiss Kiss Kiss" (Yoko Ono)|
|Released||24 October 1980|
|Format||7-inch 45 rpm|
|Genre||Rock, pop rock|
|Producer(s)||John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Jack Douglas|
|John Lennon singles chronology|
"(Just Like) Starting Over" is a song written and performed by John Lennon for his album, Double Fantasy. The B-side was Yoko Ono's "Kiss Kiss Kiss". It was released as a single on 24 October 1980 in the United Kingdom and three days later in the United States, and it reached number one in both the US and UK after Lennon was murdered. In 2013, Billboard Magazine ranked it as the 62nd biggest song of all-time on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.
This was the first single released from Double Fantasy, and the first new recording Lennon had released since 1975. It was chosen by Lennon not because he felt it was the best track on the album, but because it was the most appropriate following his five-year absence from the recording industry. He referred to it during production as the "Elvis/Orbison" track, as he "tongue in cheek" impersonated their vocal styles; at the start of the 2010 "Stripped Down" version of the song, Lennon says "this one's for Gene, and Eddie, and Elvis... and Buddy." The uplifting bell at the intro of the song serves as the antidote to the morose bell sound which opens Lennon's first solo album, Lennon seeing it as his having come full circle.
Although its origins were in unfinished demo compositions like "Don’t Be Crazy" and "My Life", it was one of the last songs to be completed in time for the Double Fantasy sessions. “We didn’t hear it until the last day of rehearsal,” producer Jack Douglas said in 2005. Lennon finished the song while on holiday in Bermuda, and recorded it at The Hit Factory in New York City just weeks later. The original title was to be "Starting Over". "(Just Like)" was added at the last minute because a country song of the same title had recently been released by Tammy Wynette. While commercial releases of the song (original 45rpm singles, LP's and Compact Discs) run a length of three minutes and 54 seconds, a promotional 12" vinyl single originally issued to radio stations features a longer fadeout, officially running at four minutes and 17 seconds. This version is highly sought by collectors.
Musicologist Walter Everett noted melodic similarities between a portion of the song and the Beach Boys' 1964 single "Don't Worry Baby". The rising chordal modulation in the chorus is also employed in "I Just Want To Be Your Everything" (1977) by Andy Gibb..
- John Lennon – vocals, rhythm guitar
- Earl Slick, Hugh McCracken – lead guitar
- Tony Levin – bass
- George Small – keyboards
- Michelle Simpson, Cassandra Wooten, Cheryl Manson Jacks, Eric Troyer – backing vocals
- Andy Newmark – drums
- Arthur Jenkins – percussion
It is his biggest solo American hit, staying at number 1 for five weeks. Before Lennon was shot in New York City on 8 December 1980, the single was at number 6 in the US and reached the summit for the week ending 27 December. Billboard ranked it at the No. 4 song for 1981. In the UK it had peaked at number 8 in the charts and had fallen to position number 21 before Lennon's death propelled it to number 1. It was overtaken to the Christmas Number One Single rank by the St Winifred's School Choir's "There's No One Quite Like Grandma," finishing at number 2 on that list. The song also reached number 1 on the Cashbox Top 100. By 6 January 1981 there were three Lennon songs in the UK top 5, a feat that remained unequalled for 36 years when Justin Bieber managed to accomplish this in January 2016.
The Flaming Lips recorded a version for the benefit album Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur.
On 8 October 2010, in honour of his birthday, iTunes released remastered albums, iTunes LPs and a free track, the 2010 remix of "(Just Like) Starting Over".
Weekly singles charts
- List of Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles of 1980
- List of Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles of 1981
- List of posthumous number-one singles (UK)
- Blaney, John (2005). John Lennon: Listen to This Book (illustrated ed.). [S.l.]: Paper Jukebox. p. 177. ISBN 978-0-9544528-1-0.
- Bronson, Fred (2 August 2013). "Hot 100 55th Anniversary: The All-Time Top 100 Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 9 August 2013.
- "Just Like Starting Over" by Chris Hunt, Uncut John Lennon Special, 2005
- Everett, Walter (2008). The Foundations of Rock : From "Blue Suede Shoes" to "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes": From "Blue Suede Shoes" to "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes". Oxford University Press. p. 200. ISBN 978-0-19-971870-2.
- Billboard Year-End Hot 100 singles of 1981
- Andrew Johnson; Claire Cooper; Victoria Richards (20 December 2009). "Not quite Top of the Pops: Stuck at Number Two for Christmas". The Independent on Sunday.
- Blaney, John (2005). John Lennon: Listen to This Book (illustrated ed.). [S.l.]: Paper Jukebox. p. 326. ISBN 978-0-9544528-1-0.
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 388. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
- Cash Box Top 100 Singles
- "Pop Singles" Billboard December 26, 1981: YE-9
- Bronson, Fred (2 August 2012). "Hot 100 55th Anniversary: The All-Time Top 100 Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 9 August 2013.
- Just Like Starting Over The Recording Of Double Fantasy by Chris Hunt, published in Uncut John Lennon Special, 2005
- Lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics
"Lady" by Kenny Rogers
|Billboard Hot 100 number one single
27 December 1980 – 24 January 1981
"The Tide Is High" by Blondie
"Super Trouper" by ABBA
|UK number one single
20 December 1980
"There's No One Quite Like Grandma" by St Winifred's School Choir
"Shaddap You Face" by Joe Dolce Music Theatre
|Australian Kent Music Report number-one single
19 January 1981 – 9 February 1981
"Duncan" by Slim Dusty