"(Just Like) Starting Over"
Single by John Lennon
from the album Double Fantasy
B-side"Kiss Kiss Kiss" (Yoko Ono)
Released23 October 1980 (US)[1]
24 October 1980 (UK)[1]
Recorded9 August 1980
StudioThe Hit Factory, New York City
Songwriter(s)John Lennon
John Lennon singles chronology
"Stand by Me"
"(Just Like) Starting Over"
Double Fantasy track listing
Official Audio
"(Just Like) Starting Over" on YouTube
Professional ratings
Review scores

"(Just Like) Starting Over" is a song written and performed by John Lennon from the 1980 album, Double Fantasy. It was released as a single on 24 October 1980 in the United Kingdom,[3] with Yoko Ono's "Kiss Kiss Kiss" as the B-side. It reached number one in both the US and UK after Lennon was murdered on 8 December 1980. It was Lennon's final single released in his lifetime.


"(Just Like) Starting Over" was the first single released from Double Fantasy and the first new recording Lennon had released since he left the music industry in 1975.[3] 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."


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.[4] Lennon finished the song while on holiday in Bermuda, and recorded it at The Hit Factory in New York City just weeks later. The song was originally titled "Starting Over"; however, "(Just Like)" was added prior to its release because of its similarity to Dolly Parton's "Starting Over Again" which had topped the US Country Charts earlier in the year.

While commercial releases of the song (original 45rpm singles, LPs 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 17 seconds.[citation needed]

Musicologist Walter Everett noted melodic similarities between a portion of the song and the Beach Boys' 1964 single "Don't Worry Baby".[5]


Lennon recorded "(Just Like) Starting Over" on 9 August 1980 at The Hit Factory. The track was mixed at the Record Plant on 25–26 September 1980.[6]


Billboard magazine considered "(Just Like) Starting Over" to be an "uptempo, fresh sounding rocker," praising the "irresistible melody and lyric line," the "exceptional rhythm unit" as well as Lennon's vocal performance.[7]

In 2013, Billboard ranked it as the 62nd biggest hit of all time on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.[8]



The song is Lennon's biggest solo hit in the United States, staying at number 1 for five weeks. Before Lennon was shot in New York City on 8 December 1980, the single had reached number 6 on the US charts. It reached number 1 for the week ending 27 December.[3] Billboard ranked it at the No. 4 song for 1981.[9] 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.[3] 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.[10] The song also reached number 1 on the Cashbox Top 100.[11] By 6 January 1981, there were three Lennon songs in the UK top 5, a feat that remained unequalled for 35 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 honor of what would have been his 70th birthday the following day, iTunes released remastered albums, iTunes LPs, and a free track, the 2010 remix of "(Just Like) Starting Over".

Chart performance

This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (December 2016) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)


Region Certification Certified units/sales
Japan (RIAJ)[35]
1997 release
Gold 50,000^
New Zealand (RMNZ)[36] Gold 10,000*

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.

See also


  1. ^ a b Onobox (liner notes). Yoko Ono. Rykodisc. 1992. RCD 10224/29.((cite AV media notes)): CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  2. ^ "Review: John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over" (PDF). Billboard. Vol. 85, no. 44. 1 November 1980. p. 91. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 30 May 2020 – via American Radio History.
  3. ^ a b c d Blaney, John (2005). John Lennon: Listen to This Book (illustrated ed.). [S.l.]: Paper Jukebox. p. 177. ISBN 978-0-9544528-1-0.
  4. ^ "Just Like Starting Over" by Chris Hunt, Uncut John Lennon Special, 2005
  5. ^ 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.
  6. ^ Madinger, Chip; Raile, Scott (2015). LENNONOLOGY Strange Days Indeed - A Scrapbook of Madness. Chesterfield, MO: Open Your Books, LLC. pp. 520, 528. ISBN 978-1-63110-175-5.
  7. ^ "Top Single Picks" (PDF). Billboard. 1 November 1980. p. 91. Retrieved 8 July 2020.
  8. ^ Bronson, Fred (2 August 2013). "Hot 100 55th Anniversary: The All-Time Top 100 Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 9 August 2013.
  9. ^ Billboard Year-End Hot 100 singles of 1981
  10. ^ 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. Archived from the original on 1 May 2022.
  11. ^ Blaney, John (2005). John Lennon: Listen to This Book (illustrated ed.). [S.l.]: Paper Jukebox. p. 326. ISBN 978-0-9544528-1-0.
  12. ^ "John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  13. ^ "John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  14. ^ "50 Singles". RPM. Vol. 34, no. 6. 20 December 1980.
  15. ^ "John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over" (in German). GfK Entertainment charts. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  16. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Startin' Over". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  17. ^ "Classifiche". Musica e Dischi (in Italian). Retrieved 27 May 2022. Set "Tipo" on "Singoli". Then, in the "Artista" field, search "John Lennon".
  18. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 3, 1981" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 23 December 2020.
  19. ^ "John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 23 December 2020.
  20. ^ "NZ Top 40 Singles Chart". The Official New Zealand Music Chart. 18 January 1981. Retrieved 18 June 2021.
  21. ^ "John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over". VG-lista. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  22. ^ "SA Charts 1965–March 1989". Retrieved 5 September 2018.
  23. ^ "John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over". Singles Top 100. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  24. ^ "John Lennon – (Just Like) Starting Over". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  25. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 388. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  26. ^ "John Lennon Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved June 18, 2021.
  27. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1993). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961–1993. Record Research. p. 138.
  28. ^ a b "australian-charts.com - Forum - Top 100 End of Year AMR Charts - 1980s (ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts)". Archived from the original on 6 October 2014.
  29. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 Singles". Archived from the original on 15 September 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2020.
  30. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  31. ^ "Top Annuali Single 1981". Retrieved 29 January 2022.
  32. ^ "The Official New Zealand Music Chart". THE OFFICIAL NZ MUSIC CHART.
  33. ^ "Pop Singles" Billboard 26 December 1981: YE-9
  34. ^ Bronson, Fred (2 August 2013). "Hot 100 55th Anniversary: The All-Time Top 100 Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  35. ^ "Japanese single certifications – John Lennon – Starting Over" (in Japanese). Recording Industry Association of Japan. Retrieved 26 December 2020. Select 1997年5月 on the drop-down menu
  36. ^ "New Zealand single certifications – John Lennon & Yoko Ono – Starting Over". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved 16 May 2020.