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"Shut Up" (stylized in all lowercase) is the opening track from Ariana Grande's sixth studio album, Positions. It was released on October 30, 2020 through Republic Records. Grande confirmed the song as the opening track of Positions on October 24, 2020, through her social media.[1]

Background[]

This song instrumental features orchestral strings and layered vocals, which combine for a cinematic opener and serves as the opening track for her sixth studio album, Positions. The song is an update on how she’s been feeling since her last album, Thank U, Next, and it aims at her critics in the chorus.

Ariana responded to fans on Twitter the day the track-list was posted, revealing that not only is "shut up" the first song on the album, but that it was the first track written. Ariana replied to a fan's tweet on October 24, 2020: "it was actually the first track! 'shut up'. i promise this is me answering the question and not telling u to shut up."[1]

In an interview with Zach Sang, Grande revealed the process of "shut up": "So me, and Tayla and Mikey did "shut up". We just used all the notes on the scale. We were like 'how can we make something that's fun lyrically and also so musical at the same time?' so that it feels orchestral and sophisticated but lyrically it just fun and chill."

She furthers explained in the interview: "with 'shut up', we didn't want it to be too aggressive or preachy, it's kinda like an invite to act different and not spend so much time being negative and trying to waste your energy about people you hate."[2]

The song had a scrapped visual of her lip-syncing the song, the first snippet leaked on April 13, 2023. A week later, the full visualizer was leaked on April 21, 2023, alongside three other scrapped visuals that was "positions", "motive", and "obvious".

On June 17, 2023, the behind the scenes studio footage of "shut up" leaked in full. The creation date of the studio footage was March 23, 2020.

The full session was leaked on January 22, 2024.

Audios[]

Critical reception[]

According to NME's Hannah Mylrea, "shut up" sets a "precedent for the entire record." On her review of the parent album Positions, Alexa Camp from Slant Magazine highlighted Grande's "cascading vocal lines propped up by plucky strings and orchestral flourishes" on the song, but she felt that it "sputters out soon after it reaches its swirling, cinematic climax."[3] Bobby Olivier of Spin wrote that, despite the song being "quippy and fun", its golden-era Hollywood outro "doesn't really fit."[4]

Chart performance[]

Shut Up debuted at #47 on the Billboard Hot 100 during the chart week of November 14, 2020.[5]

Trivia[]

  • This was one of the first song written and recorded for Positions.
  • The song has been described as "a jewel box of an orchestral-pop number in which the singer tells off people too concerned with how she spends her time".[6]
  • The first 4 demos were recorded within the end of the scrapped Thank U, Next deluxe recording sessions.

Lyrics[]

[Verse 1]
My presence sweet and my aura bright
Diamonds good for my appetite
Guess it fuckin' just clicked one night
All them demons helped me see shit differently
So don't be sad for me

[Pre-Chorus]
How you been spending your time? (How?)
How you be using your tongue? (How?)
You be so worried 'bout mine (Mine)
Can't even get yourself none
You know you sound so dumb (So dumb, so dumb)
You know you sound so dumb (So dumb)

[Chorus]
So maybe you should shut up, mmm
Yeah, maybe you should shut up
Said if only you would shut up (Mmm)
Yeah, that's right, you should shut up (Ah)

[Verse 2]
I vibrate high and my circle lit
We ain't really with drugs and shit
Love the game so I ain't never miss
Keep opinions muted for the hell of it
'Cause I like my shit (Mmm, yep)

[Pre-Chorus]
How you been spending your time? (How?)
How you be using your tongue? (How?)
You be so worried 'bout mine (Mine)
Can't even get yourself none
You know you sound so dumb (So dumb, so dumb)
You know you sound so dumb (So dumb)

[Chorus]
So maybe you should shut up, mmm
Yeah, maybe you should shut up
Said if only you would shut up (Mmm)
Yeah, that's right, you should shut up (Ah)

References[]

Positions
October 30, 2020 • 41:07 • Republic Records
Songs
Released 34+35Just Like MagicLove LanguageMain ThingMotiveMy HairNastyObviousOff The TablePositionsPOVSafety NetShut UpSix ThirtySomeone Like UTest DriveWest SideWorst Behavior
Unreleased 90s Heartbreak95 MillionAnti ShitBabymakingBlueberriesBopBowzerBrandy MelvilleCommunicateComplicatedComptonCount Me InDan E Elf ManDashin ItDo DatDon't Talk To My ManDirty SecretsDisco DanceEarly 200sEverything I DoFor SureFresh White TeeFuck Around With The Fuck AroundGirl Is MineGodsfavorGrande. 1Groovy BabyHandy ManHe Had It CominHerguitarHeroHersHomeHow Do YouI Like Your PartInternational Friendship DayI'm ReadyIntroezyIt's A-Jedi MindJoccyJust Happy 4 NowLakortleLalalaLaniLet's StayLofi 1Lofi 2Love Me NowMacking ShitMade Of TheseMet Him Last NightMy FaultNeighborhoodNew House-PopNo Free PromoNorthshoreNot TodayOrganic OOOOOOOOutgrownOweeePick ChordsPink RoseShortySmoooothSweet DreamsTake CareTennis BallThe GodfatherThrasherTommy 3Tommy 4Quiet KidWanna See Something CoolY Is Everyone So In Love With Me
Artists
Ariana GrandeBryson TillerCarmen ReeceDemi LovatoDoja CatLil WayneMegan Thee StallionNjomzaRoddy RicchTayla ParxThe WeekndTy Dolla SignVictoria Monét
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