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Color photograph of Iggy Azalea
Single by Iggy Azalea
from the album In My Defense
Released3 May 2019 (2019-05-03)
GenreHip hop
Producer(s)J. White Did It
Iggy Azalea singles chronology
"Sally Walker"
"Fuck It Up"
Music video
"Started" on YouTube

"Started" is a song recorded by Australian rapper Iggy Azalea for her second studio album In My Defense. The song was written by Azalea alongside Ronny Wright and produced by J. White Did It. It was released by Bad Dreams and Empire on 3 May 2019 as the second single from the album. An accompanying music video for the track, directed by Colin Tilley, was shot the prior month in Los Angeles and also premiered that day. As of October 2019 the video has over 60 million views on YouTube.


Azalea released the first single titled "Sally Walker" from her often-delayed sophomore album on 15 March 2019. The music video accompanied the song's release and had a funeral-themed storyline featuring appearances by makeup artist James Charles and drag queens Shea Couleé, Vanessa Vanjie Mateo, and Mayhem Miller. The video concluded with a preview of a new song titled "Started".[1][2] During an interview with iHeartRadio on 11 April, she confirmed it would be her next single, claiming "nobody would admit that it was the new favorite song in the room. And then one day, J. White was like, 'I'm just gonna say it, don't judge me, 'Started' is my favorite song.' And I was like, 'No way, I've been thinking the same thing.'"[3]

On 19 April 2019, Azalea announced "Started" would be released on 3 May 2019 by sharing the cover art on her social media pages before she had teased it the previous night by changing her Twitter layout.[4] She tweeted, "What you read? It's true. Iam a bitch. STARTED MAY 3!" The artwork for the single shows Azalea standing in front of a dresser while holding a pink cake with the song title written on it. The word "Daddy" appears in rhinestones on her midriff-baring top.[5] Azalea then kept teasing the visuals by posting promotional pictures of the music video on social media in the days ahead of the release.[6]


"Started" is a hip hop song, with a length of three minutes and six seconds. It was written by Azalea and Ronny Wright and produced by J. White Did It, who had also produced Azalea's previous single "Sally Walker".[7] The track finds Azalea boasting, "I started from the bottom and now I'm rich... You started out hating, now you love my drip."[2] It is described as an unapologetic "brag-heavy cut [...] club banger about making your way to success after having nothing" and was noted to borrowing and twisting the Drake line "started from the bottom," by adding "and now I'm rich".[8][9][10]

Music video[edit]

Background and release[edit]

A music video for the track was shot in April 2019 in a Los Angeles mansion.[6] It was directed by Colin Tilley, who also directed the music videos for Azalea's previous singles, "Savior", "Kream" and "Sally Walker". Azalea said she considered it her best yet by tweeting, "Started is the best video I've ever made."[5] After changing her Twitter layout and unveiling the cover artwork, Azalea followed up her announcement tweet with: "Imagine NOT knowing an Anna Nicole Smith quote when you see one. Can’t relate," and implied the visuals would reference Smith.[11] She then regularly shared more stills from the video on social media, with the presence of a "sugar daddy" and flaunting a lavish lifestyle suggesting the main themes to be wealth and gold digging.[12][13][6] She also posted pictures on set of the visuals with drag queen Trixie Mattel and tweeted: "I wrote a scene just for her in sallywalker but she was on tour so I HAD to write her into the story for started when I found out she’d be in town."[14][9] A few hours before the single release, Azalea confirmed the video would be dropping on the same day, it has received over 67 million views on YouTube.[15]


The video, which includes an appearance from Trixie Mattel in a skit, as well as Vanessa Vanjie Mateo (who previously made an appearance in the video for "Sally Walker"), features Azalea playing a sugar baby after it opens with her marriage to an older man in a wheelchair, who uses an oxygen mask. Azalea is seen in a short white gown and donning many different looks throughout, including a diamond wig during a pool scene and a suit made out of hundred-dollar bills. Halfway through the video, Azalea starts to grow tired of him until another version of herself and Mattel appear in an infomercial for Die Slow Cake Co., a poison cake mix to kill a sugar daddy, with the jingle: "If your name's in his will and you want your bread/ Call 1-833-DADDYS-DEAD." She then attempts to suffocate him with a cushion on their bed and he eventually dies during a feast. Azalea is left to enjoy her new life on her own by redecorating, with the help of Mateo, and hosting a lavish party afterwards to celebrate her wealth. In the context of the video, the song's lyrics reference how the sugar baby character's many naysayers believed she would not become rich, and has managed to prove them wrong.[10][16]


Chart (2019) Peak
Australia Digital Tracks (ARIA)[17] 37
Canadian Hot Digital Songs (Billboard)[18] 30
France Downloads (SNEP)[19] 122
Greece Digital Songs (Billboard)[20] 10
Hungary (Single Top 40)[21] 12
Ireland (IRMA)[22] 73
New Zealand Hot Singles (RMNZ)[23] 11
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[24] 43
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[25] 76
UK Independent Singles (OCC)[26] 12
US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles (Billboard)[27] 20
US Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop Singles (Billboard)[28] 3

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label Ref.
Various 3 May 2019
United States 11 June 2019 Rhythmic contemporary [29]


  1. ^ Zemler, Emily (15 March 2019). "See Iggy Azalea's Morbid New Video for 'Sally Walker'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
  2. ^ a b Roth, Madeline (15 March 2019). "Iggy Azalea and a bunch of Drag Race faves party at a funeral in 'Sally Walker' video". MTV. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
  3. ^ Mastrogiannis, Nicole (11 April 2019). "Iggy Azalea Talks "Sally Walker," Teases Songs on New Album 'In My Defense'". iHeartRadio. Retrieved 19 April 2019.
  4. ^ Nied, Mike (19 April 2019). "Iggy Azalea Teases The Release Date Of Next Single, 'Started'". Idolator. Retrieved 19 April 2019.
  5. ^ a b "Iggy Azalea Announces New Single 'Started'". Rap-Up. 19 April 2019. Retrieved 19 April 2019.
  6. ^ a b c d Wass, Mike (29 April 2019). "Iggy Azalea's "Started" Video Is Shaping Up To Be Spectacular". Idolator. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  7. ^ Started on Spotify
  8. ^ "New Music: Iggy Azalea - 'Started'". Rap-Up. 3 May 2019. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
  9. ^ a b Nied, Mike (3 May 2019). "A Bop! Iggy Azalea Gets It Very Right With "Started"". Idolator. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
  10. ^ a b Daw, Stephen (3 May 2019). "Iggy Azalea Recruits Trixie Mattel & Miss Vanjie to Help Kill Her Sugar Daddy in Wild 'Started' Video: Watch". Billboard. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
  11. ^ @IGGYAZALEA (19 April 2019). "Imagine NOT knowing an Anna Nicole Smith quote when you see one. Can't relate" (Tweet). Retrieved 30 March 2019 – via Twitter.
  12. ^ Zidel, Alex (26 April 2019). "Iggy Azalea Posts Photos With Her "Sugar Daddy" To Hype Up New Single". HotNewHipHop. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  13. ^ Dare, Angie (28 April 2019). "Iggy Azalea Teases Started Video W/ Beautiful Women Looking Bossed Up". SOHH. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  14. ^ Harper, Rosario (30 April 2019). "Iggy Azalea Shares More Sneak Peeks From New Started Video". SOHH. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  15. ^ Libardi, Manuella (2 May 2019). "Iggy Azalea Sizzles In Leopard-Print Bodysuit In New Instagram Photo". Inquisitr. Retrieved 2 May 2019.
  16. ^ Nied, Mike (3 May 2019). "Iggy Azalea Is The Ultimate Gold Digger In Her "Started" Video". Idolator. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
  17. ^ "ARIA Australian Top 40 Digital Tracks" (PDF). Australian Recording Industry Association. 13 May 2019. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  18. ^ "Iggy Azalea – Chart history (Hot Canadian Digital Song Sales)". Billboard. Retrieved 13 May 2019.
  19. ^ "Le Top de la semaine : Top Singles Téléchargés – SNEP (Week 19, 2019)" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. Retrieved 13 May 2019.
  20. ^ "Iggy Azalea Chart History - Greece Digital Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 13 August 2019.
  21. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  22. ^ "IRMA – Irish Charts". Irish Recorded Music Association. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  23. ^ "NZ Hot Singles Chart". Recorded Music NZ. 13 May 2019. Retrieved 10 May 2019.
  24. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  25. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  26. ^ "Official Independent Singles Chart Top 50". Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  27. ^ "Iggy Azalea Chart History (Bubbling Under Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 13 May 2019.
  28. ^ "Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop : May 18, 2019". Billboard. Retrieved 13 May 2019. (subscription required)
  29. ^ "Top 40 Rhythmic Future Releases". All Access Media Group. Archived from the original on 31 May 2019. Retrieved 31 May 2019.

External links[edit]