"Starry Eyed" is a song by English recording artist Ellie Goulding, released as the second single from her debut album, Lights (2010). It was written by Goulding and Jonny Lattimer, and produced by Starsmith. Goulding made her debut US television performance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on 7 April 2011 performing "Starry Eyed".
When asked what "Starry Eyed" was about, Goulding told Digital Spy:
It's about letting go. As opposed to all the sad and depressing things I write about, I decided to write something about the joining together of people in some kind of euphoric state—be it at a festival, at a show or in a club. I wanted a song that would reach out to people of every background and every enjoyment, whether you enjoy a natural high, taking drugs, drinking or whatever. Because I'm essentially a pop artist I wanted to write a song that everyone can relate to.
Nick Levine wrote for Digital Spy that the song "manages to be folky, poppy and dancey all at the same time, twinkly but not twee, and otherworldly without losing its universal appeal."NME critic Mark Beaumont cited "Starry Eyed" as one of the album's "spangliest tracks" along with "Under the Sheets", commenting that it "finds Ellie love-struck and breathless [...] to disco diva beats and looped soul wails, sounding like an angelic Cheryl Cole."
"Starry Eyed" debuted at number four on the UK Singles Chart, selling 49,118 copies in its first week. The song spent two additional weeks at number four, selling 45,579 copies in its second week and 39,942 copies in its third week. "Starry Eyed" was certified gold by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) on 22 July 2013, with sales of 496,278 copies in the United Kingdom as of August 2013.
The music video, directed by Ross Cooper and Bugsy Riverbank Steel of OneInThree, was filmed at Finsbury Town Hall in London and released on 20 January 2010. It sees Goulding in various costumes and settings of the venue as well as two acrobatic backup dancers dressed in fringe leotards. The video uses a visual styling effect used generally in sporting analysis called StroMotion which created the unique look of Goulding and the dancer's echoes, reverses and reverberations as they dance to the song.
An alternative video, directed by Dugan O'Neal, was filmed at Painshill Park in Surrey and released on 28 July 2011 for the US market. It features Goulding stargazing in the countyside with her on-screen boyfriend, with special effects used to make stars appear to whirl around her. Goulding is also seen in a Cystal Grotto wearing a silver dress, sporting blue eye contacts, and dancing around while lip-syncing. Towards the end of the video, Goulding and her boyfriend go to a tree where he places her hand on a tree in front of them, making geometric lines appear on the tree. When she looks back for her boyfriend, he turns around in a hood, and is hollow but filled with the night sky that zooms into, and show Goulding in a peach-yellow dress singing the last part of the song. The American version of the video also features product placement for Beats by Dr. Dre headphones and Mini Cooper, which can both be seen being used by Goulding within the first fifteen seconds of the video.
Luke Holland, the drummer of American metalcore band The Word Alive, released a video performing a drum cover of the song on 1 June 2011.
American singer Bridgit Mendler recorded an acoustic version of the song for her video series titled The Hurricane Sessions, with the music video released on YouTube on 8 May 2013. Sam Lansky of Idolator commented that "her husky voice works nicely with the song, especially toward the end, as it gets a little more emotive."The Huffington Post opined that Mendler's cover "show[s] off" her vocal range and added, "By slowing it down, Bridgit's version of the song sounds more intimate and relaxing, making it the perfect song for a 'rainy day' soundtrack." "Starry Eyed" was included on the set list of Mendler's Summer Tour in 2013. She also performed the song on the breakfast show The Strawberry Alarm Clock on the Dublin-based radio station FM104 on 30 October 2013.