Nate Ruess was asked to guest on Just Give Me a Reason because Pink realized while she was writing it that the song sounds more like a “conversation between lovers”. She also called the lead singer of Fun her “favorite voice right now, aside from probably Adele.” Within the context of Pink’s sixth studio album – The Truth About Love – the song stands out as being a pop ballad among more rock-influenced tracks.
Critics appreciated the contrast, with Pop Crush noting that Just Give Me a Reason “gives fans a respite from the fiery anthems”. They also added: “We like the soft, warm and fuzzy side of Pink, since even when she is vulnerable, she’s still edgy”. In the same line of thinking, Rolling Stone praised the fact that Pink lets the melody and sentiments do their work and that for once she focuses on actual singing, instead of yowling.
The track was produced by Jeff Bhasker, who’s also responsible for Grammy-winning songs Run This Town by Jay-Z, All of the Lights by Kanye West and Fun’s very own We Are Young. The song’s production was characterized as simple and spare by About Entertainment, while Billboard admitted that the song “would fit right at home on [Fun’s] Some Nights” because of it.
Just Give Me a Reason spent 3 consecutive weeks at number one in Billboard Top 100 before being dethroned by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ Can’t Hold Us (featuring Ray Dalton).