Ellie Goulding ‘never’ dated Ed Sheeran, claims his song ‘Don’t’ is not about her


I’ve gone from not really caring about Ellie Goulding’s music to being actively annoyed by her voice in the past year. I think it was that song she did for the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack that finally did it for me: that song is crazy-annoying and Ellie’s voice grates on my last nerve. If Ellie is your jam, more power to you. But I’m not into it. Anyway, Ellie covers the new issue of Elle UK and she ends up talking about a tabloid story that’s been out there for more than a year: that she is the subject of Ed Sheeran’s slam-song “Don’t”. Sheeran seemingly confirmed that he was sort of dating Ellie but then she cheated on with Niall Horan. Ellie says it’s not true (Sheeran has said it’s not true as well and that it was made up by a UK paper). Some highlights:

The Ed Sheeran-Niall Horan thing: “I did go on a few dates with Niall, but I was never in a relationship with Ed. I have absolutely no idea where that came from and why it was turned into such a big thing.”

The Taylor Swift complaint: “I find it so frustrating that female musicians are constantly defined by the men they have or haven’t dated. It’s something I’ve talked about with Taylor a lot. She definitely feels that. She gets bothered by it. It’s like, you can be a great artist, you can write great songs, but the thing that everyone is going to talk about is some relationship they think you have had or not had. It’s definitely something we both think happens to female artists over male artists.’ ”

Her current boyfriend Dougie Poynter: “He is definitely the one forever. He’s been through a lot, and he has a quiet depth that I love. And you know what, when I was a teenager, I fancied him, but I thought he was out of my league. Way too good-looking for me….Calvin Harris has already offered to play at our wedding. Not that we’ve organized one. But the offer has been made.”

She was never confidant: “When I started out, I couldn’t cope with it. I felt embarrassed by it. I didn’t quite know who I was supposed to be. I was never confident in my looks. I hated my chin, my nose, my eyebrows. I was told by people at my record company to watch videos of other girls, like Little Boots, and Elly Jackson from La Roux, and try and look like them. I had panic attacks so bad I couldn’t leave my flat; I couldn’t bear people looking at me. I would worry that I would never be able to sing because I couldn’t even get up. I was also horribly ashamed of myself because I felt like some sort of drama queen and all I wanted to be was strong.”

[From People & E! News]

So if “Don’t” isn’t about Ellie and Niall, who is it about? That’s the real question. Ellie fit into the theory really well, although my initiation reading of the song was that it was about… Rita Ora. Because that fits as well, especially since Rita apparently cheats on every boyfriend she ever has.

As for Ellie’s Taylor Swift-specific complaints… besides the Ed Sheeran gossip, which was mostly about Ed not Ellie, I couldn’t care less about who she’s dating. Unless a pop star is dating someone really gossip-worthy or scandalous, who cares? That’s the thing, though – they want you to care. That’s why Tay-Tay is dating the richest DJ/producer in the world, a man with his own high-profile dating drama. That’s why these pop stars air their dirty laundry for the world to see. That’s why they write thinly veiled blind-item songs about their high-profile loves. It’s all because they don’t want you to pay attention to them, right?


Photos courtesy of Elle UK.

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27 Responses to “Ellie Goulding ‘never’ dated Ed Sheeran, claims his song ‘Don’t’ is not about her”

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  1. Allie says:

    You guys, I’m a really serious artist and I don’t want to be defined by the people I date.

    But did you know I’m dating Doug? I’m so in love with him and he’s so great and another celebrity you may know, Calvin Harris, ya know the one that is currently dating Taylor Swift, yeah he’s totally going to play at our wedding.

    But like take me seriously guys. I’m private.

    • OhDear says:

      To be fair to her, I think nearly every celebrity does this (with exceptions, obviously). But it’s still annoying.

    • LB says:

      And then to invoke the name of Taylor Swift to give her point credence? Taylor Swift? Who has expanded her career out of her dating shenanigans (embarrassing nearly every famous ex boyfriend she has had in the process by being so obvious about who she was singing about) and continues to do pap walks with her famous boyfriend?

      All these people know how to keep their lives more private (maybe never completely private but definitely more private). They choose not to and then complain. I cannot. I just cannot.

  2. Abbott says:

    I can’t with the name Dougie on a grown man.

    • Greek Chic says:

      it’s nice for a dog though.

    • Norman Bates' Mother says:

      And Douglas sounds so much nicer than Dougie. But it could be worse. According to Google, his sister is a grown woman who goes by Jazzie.

  3. Mila says:

    oh come on, Taylor certainly isnt treated in a sexist way. there is not one man (or woman!) who has her habit of doing pap walks with teenage heartthrobs and then writing songs about them. Taylor is the one selling her boyfriends. Same as Jennifer Aniston. You dont hear about Meryl Streeps husband all the time, do you? Angela Merkels husband? Natalie Portman? Cate Blanchett? Or to take a male example: Matt Damons wife? The reason is those people dont sell out their love life like Taylor does. Guess why we hear more about Jen Garner and Benny? Same reason, Taylor.
    seriously, those people are so absorbed that they not only dont get it but they are also co opting important causes with their narcissism.

    this whole MEMEME-“feminism” makes me sooo angry.

  4. Loopy says:

    I have seen pics of her and Dougie and almost everyone always says Dougie does not look into it AT ALL. She is usually draped around him and he looks like he is somewhere else.

  5. Shambles says:

    I think her lesser-known music is really good. Halcyon (her latest album, as far as I know), had some great backbeats and lyrical depth. I can relate to a lot of the songs on that and her first album, Lights. I think the FSOG tune was a made-for-the-soundtrack song, so she probably didn’t put her entire soul into it. And I mean really, it’s associated with FSOG. Sh*t by association.

    • Bridget says:

      I agree with Kaiser on this one, I just can’t with her voice. It’s so treacly.

      Though to be fair, I can’t stand Ed Sheeran either. That “73” song is probably on a loop in thw waiting room for hell.

      • Shambles says:

        Ed Sheeran will only love you til you’re 70, but not a day after.

      • Diana B says:

        I freaking HATE her weak @ss voice,

      • jugstorecowboy says:

        My four-year-old loves her, and when I told her that EG is not my cup of tea she asked “Is her voice too sweet?” Even a preschooler hears the cloy!

  6. Franca says:

    I liked Ellie’s music before she went all eletronic.

    Isn’t she 6 or 7 years older than Niall? And went on a date with him when he was what, 18? Weird.

    Dougie is pretty famous in the UK. I like them as a couple.

    And I feel for her, she did get nasty comments about her looks when she started. Even now people say Dougie is to pretty for her.

  7. Maria says:

    I loathe that song by Ed.

    Like, he specifically states that wasn’t looking for a commitment but spends the entire time crying because the girl screwed someone else 😑, Cry baby.

    • Laura says:


    • Ceree says:

      I hate Ed Sheeran because of this, “Hey girl, I like you, wait, don’t get too close, I still want to eff my eff buddy but wait for me, huh, you have another guy, you cheating whore!”

      Because that’s basically the song. He is a misogynist in sheeps “nice guy” clothing Blech,

  8. The Original Original says:

    I think it was about her, and hes that nice of a guy that hes retracting it so she doesnt have to look like crap.

  9. someone says:

    Can someone solve a mystery for me about Ellie’s Shades of Grey song Love Me Like You Do. I swear she is saying “what are you waiting for…on” To me it sounds like she is starts the last word out as “for” but then ends up after holding it out for awhile at the word “on”. Am I the only one that hears it that way?

    • Jessica Fletcher says:

      I didn’t, but now I can’t unhear it!

      As if I needed another reason to be bugged by that fecking song.

  10. kri says:

    I think “Don’t” was written about that horrific outfit she is sporting on the cover. Ed was trying to give a warning.

  11. Lexie says:

    Jennie Garth is looking pretty good these days!