Before Alanis Morissette‘s definition of “Ironic” confused a generation of young students of English, the abrasive alt-rock starlet wasn’t abrasive at all. She cut her teeth as a child actor, dabbling in teen pop in Canada over two albums. Though following a sojourn through America en route to L.A. to find a collaborator that would encourage her darker side, the then 21-year-old threat dropped Jagged Little Pill on this day in 1995.
Adding to the darkness in L.A., Morissette was robbed at gun point. Which explains some of the feminist-spawned tongue-lashings on the record. Maybe not the most lyrically dynamic tongue-lashings – “I recommend getting your heart trampled on to anyone,” “Are you thinking of me when you fuck her?” – but wrought with the singer’s angsty octave drop she became infamous for, many young women – and men – identified with the pop-bent crudeness of it all. That vindictive sex line on “You Oughta Know” was also fun to swear over on the radio edit, which was impossible to escape, as the lead single propelled her into a fine limelight glow with this coming-of-age sing-song chorus:
And I’m here to remind you
Of the mess you left when you went away
It’s not fair to deny me
Of the cross I bear that you gave to me
You, you, you oughta know