Jagged (2021) - full transcript

Documentary centers on the life and work of Canadian singer-songwriter Alanis Morissette while making her breakout album 'Jagged Little Pill'

Alanis Morissette was one
of the biggest musical stars

of her generation.

Making this movie gave me a look

at these personal moments
behind the scenes,

getting to see what she was
up against at the time.

And there was still so much
that I didn't know about her.

♪ Is all I want to say to you ♪

We ready?

Let's get together.

God, time's flying,

so let's just seize as many
of the moments as we can



and enjoy the shows
for what they are,

enjoy the cover team tonight,
the vibe...

So have a good show, sweets.

Cheers.

Tank, don't fuck up.

Oh, you're asking
for karma right there.

I'm gonna be watching.

Jay, don't blow that last note.

♪ Do I stress you out? ♪

♪ My sweater is on backwards
And inside out ♪

♪ And you say
How appropriate ♪

♪ I don't want to dissect
Everything today ♪

♪ I don't mean to pick you
Apart you see ♪

♪ But I can't help it... ♪



The album opens
with the question,

"Do I stress you out?"

And then spends
the rest of its time

trying to live up
to that question.

♪ And it would knock me
To the floor ♪

♪ If I wasn't there already ♪

♪ If only I could hunt
The hunter ♪

At the time, almost
one out of every ten people

in America had the album.

Wherever you went, everyone
knew Jagged Little Pill.

It's so rare
for an artist

who's totally unknown

to come out with a debut album,

have one hit after another

to the point
where they're not only, like,

a national phenomenon,

they're, like,
a world-wide phenomenon.

♪ A way to get my hands untied ♪

♪ And all I really want... ♪

Her brutal honesty
is what empowered women.

It just gave you a chance
to let out your own feelings.

It's like, "I've got a voice.

I'm 19 years old,

and I'm gonna fucking well
tell you how I feel about that."

A lot of people would say,
"Wow, you're so brave.

"You're so empowered.
You're so strong," you know?

And I'm like, "Sometimes."

I can't write all these songs

without obviously having
been disempowered.

I mean, half these songs
are about attempting

to become empowered.

Alanis interview, take one.

A mark.

So Canada, eh?

Tell us about where
you grew up.

Ottawa is a sweet
hometown of mine.

Capital of Canada.

Every woman from Ottawa
that I know

is hyper-capable and competent,
outspoken,

slightly androgynous, and fun,
and knows how to party.

I lived in Ottawa for the first
three years of my life...

and then we moved to Germany
for a few years.

But I consider myself to have
grown up in Ottawa, primarily,

and then influenced
by the three-some-odd years

that we were in Europe.

And my parents
were both teachers.

I have an older brother
named Chad

and a twin brother named Wade.

My cousins used to say
that they were coming over

to see the three boys.

"Come on, boys."

And I'd be like, "Okay,
I guess that includes me."

I was eight and nine,

and I used to just sing songs
into a cassette tape.

I wanted to be a dancer, actor,
teacher, writer, nurse.

Archetypes.

Meet the parents. It's us!

Dysfunctional.

My mom is just breathtaking.

Anytime I feel beautiful,

I feel as though
I look like her.

And when I don't
feel so beautiful,

I don't look like her at all.

My dad always wanted to be
in the entertainment industry.

He loves music.
He loves film.

My dad definitely
had his eye out all the time.

He was pretty excited
to share anything

that would open those
doors for me.

Touch my brother, would ya?

-Hey, Stephanie?
-Yes, Alanis?

I auditioned for
You Can't Do That on Television.

It was a big cattle call.

It's a kids' show
that also winks to the parents.

Alanis, you must
have a good idea.

I don't know.

If you say "I don't know,"
you get slimed.

Alasdair, you did that
on purpose.

Now I will hate you.

It was too much
like a full-time job,

I mean, we were on a TV show.
So it was like, okay,

you're ten or you're 11
or you're 12,

and here are your hours.

I loved singing in church.

Basically a room every Sunday

where we're all singing
at the top of our lungs,

these songs of rapture
and gratitude and exaltation.

Yes!

I was singing,

and a woman tapped me
on the shoulder really quietly,

and she said,
"You have a beautiful voice."

And I remember thinking,
"I do? Thanks!"

And I just remember sitting
for the rest of Mass

just being, like...

My guest tonight
is Alanis Morissette.

And I welcome you in, Alanis,

because I think
you are the youngest guest

who I've ever had
on this program.

Twelve years old,
and you actually sing and write

- your own music, right?
- Yes, I do.

When I was ten, I just thought,
"Hey, why don't I write a song?"

And I did.

♪ What did you think
I'd be doing now? ♪

♪ While you left me
I was thinking aloud ♪

♪ Will there be no end
To my sorrow? ♪

♪ Will I make it
Through tomorrow? ♪

Ladies and gentlemen,
the 1987 CJOH

Youth Talent Search '87
grand prize winner

is Alanis Morissette!

This was when all the vision
for what was possible

for the rest of my life, like,
started getting flashes

of photos of me
traveling and touring,

and it all started
to feel possible.

♪ Fate, fate, fate
Stay with me ♪

I'd get on airplanes
when I was ten,

and my mom would tap
the gentleman's shoulder

and say,
"Could you just kind of

keep an eye
on my daughter on this flight?"

So I'd fly to Toronto
and do photoshoots

and music sessions
and interviews.

It was just a different era.

We're really enjoying kind of
the ride, if you wish, along.

And our basic purpose
is to try to make sure

that the right people
are surrounding Alanis.

My dad met Leslie Howe
at a restaurant.

He was pretty much the only
person in Canada who made music,

whom we knew of,
who lived in Ottawa.

So the thought
on my dad's part was,

"Well, this would be the perfect
person to speak with."

They came over
one day with some tapes

and approached me
on seeing if I would

be interested in producing her.

And they dropped off a tape,
and I said I'd listen to it.

I thought, you know, it's pretty
damn good for somebody her age.

I'm working with Leslie Howe
right now from One to One.

He's producing my album.

And all of that
having just turned 15.

Yeah.

Working with Leslie,
just singing and singing
and singing

and just cut my teeth
on vocal aerobics, basically.

His style of production
was much more...

Forty-two tracks of harmonies.

Sing it again, sing it again,
sing it again, sing it again.

So there was some element later
where I compensatorily was like,

"I'm not doing fucking 50 takes.
I'm doing one... or two."

That's when I started
writing songs

for what became
my self-titled record

with the song "Too Hot" on it,
that I released when I was 16.

♪ Always too hot
Never too cold ♪

♪ You make your best shot
Too hot to hold... ♪

We did a video for "Too Hot".

It was one of the most
fun parts of life.

♪ Hey, boy
You wanted all or nothin'... ♪

There was an element
of lack of hyper-protection,

no question.

I mean, I was shooting
music videos in Paris.

I put a bathing suit
on at one point

and jumped into the fountain.

Just as the police were coming
to boot us out, we...

We bolted.

And I guess
she's just got this...

charisma that people like.

And they want to hear her,
and they want to see her.

Alanis' summer has been spent

traveling with me
across the country.

I'm going to Florida
for Christmas.

On one level, I just thought,
"This is dream-come-true stuff.

"This is, like,
catalyst beginning

of a life of my dreams,"
you know?

And then on another hand,
it was like,

"Where is my protection?
Where is everybody?"

I lived to dance, so we'd go to
these huge, huge clubs in Paris

and dance.

You know, hit on a bunch
of times by people way too old.

Guys asking me to give them
blowjobs in the bathroom.

And I'm just like...

Everyone was just so excited

about what was going on
with music

and with the taking-off
of my career, I think,

that it became really enticing.

A gold record!

Representing sales
of over 50,000 copies

of her MCA debut album, Alanis.

I remember when I was, like,
15 or 16,

I started gaining weight because
I was going through puberty.

And I was called in to
the studio to "redo my vocals",

and when I got there...

the producer said...

"We're not doing vocals.

We're here to talk
about your weight."

Whenever I would go
to a video shoot,

I remember sneaking
Velveeta slice... cheese slices

from the fridge
at 3:00 in the morning.

And then the next morning
would come, and...

he would walk in and count them

and say, "Did you eat two slices
of cheese during the night?"

We'd go out to eat, he'd have
a whole-size large pizza,

and I was allowed to buy
a black coffee,

but I couldn't put milk in it.

So, yeah, that kick-started

a massive eating disorder
journey for me.

I've been in active recovery
for this eating disorder

my whole life.

My two best friends were
Steph Gibson and Cynthia Smith.

Cynthia's a good singer too.
She's underestimating herself.

Nah.

- Sure.
- Steph's coming on the road
with me for sure.

Yeah, right.

I don't know
that she opened up

even to us 100 percent with what
she was going through in life.

She probably struggled a lot,
but, you know,

not a lot of people knew.

And Steph was the one
that basically

caught me sticking my finger
down my throat.

I just wrapped
my arms around her

and gave her a big hug,
and, you know,

I think she knew at that point
that I was there for her,

and I would help
in any way I could.

It was the first time that
anyone said a word about it.

I'll be grateful to her
forever for that,

because there was no shame.

It wasn't like, "What are
you doing?"

It was like, "Should we
talk about this?"

So sweet.

I could see why somebody would
pick you out from the crowd.

-The camera does like you.
-Well, thanks.

♪ Why is true love
Just so hard to find? ♪

Something about me being 15,

that's when I really
started to be hit on.

Twelve, they were
a little scared.

Thirteen, they were
a little scared,

but they'd still, you know...

Fourteen, less scary,
but still scary.

Fifteen, all bets were off.

Somehow that seemed
like a safer number for people.

I was a young girl in a studio

from 3:30 or 4:00 p.m. every day

till 3:00 in the morning.

You know,
you don't leave her alone.

I just thought it was...

my fault, because almost
every single person

that I would work with,

there would be some
turning point

where the camera would
go Dutch angle.

And I would just wait for it.
I was like,

"Okay, this won't happen in
the first week for this one,

but it'll happen," you know?
And then sure enough, it would,

and it would either
end the relationship,

or then there would be
just some big secret

that we'd keep forever.

♪ It's not a game ♪

We went to shoot a video
for a song called "Real World".

The snake video.

MCA Records did not know
what category I would fit in

as I was evolving
from performer, pop princess.

You know,
they could handle that.

I was really starting
to write my own material,

and it was just going
in way too different

of a direction for them.

And a couple
of the head people there,

I remember they pulled me aside,

and they said, "What are you
doing with these new songs?

You should just keep doing
what you've been doing,

what people know you as

and what Uncle John Alexander
wants you to do."

I was in my apartment
in Toronto...

and I got a phone call.
"MCA's dropping you."

It was really terrifying
and painful

because I was standing up
to all these people

who had a very clear way
of doing it the way they wanted.

You know,
I had that people-please-y,

smiling-all-the-time thing,

but underneath it was
this churning

of how out-of-integrity
so much felt.

This is a song called
"Right Through You".

♪ Wait a minute, man ♪

♪ You mispronounced my name ♪

♪ You didn't wait for
All the information ♪

♪ Before you turned me away ♪

♪ Wait a minute, sir ♪

♪ You kind of hurt my feelings ♪

♪ You see me as a sweet
Back-loaded puppet ♪

♪ And you've got
Meal-ticket taste ♪

♪ I see right through you ♪

♪ I know right through you ♪

♪ I feel right through you ♪

♪ I walk right through you ♪

♪ You took me for a joke, yeah ♪

♪ You took me for a child ♪

♪ You took a long hard look
At my ass ♪

♪ And then played golf
For a while ♪

♪ Your shake is like a fish ♪

♪ You pat me on the head ♪

♪ You took me out
To wine, dine, 69 me ♪

♪ But didn't hear
A damn word I said ♪

♪ I see right through you ♪

The early part
of my songwriting,

I was working with people
who said I couldn't write.

One of the liberating factors
to being dropped by MCA Records

was that I promised myself

that I would not stop
until I was in a room

with someone who saw me
as a writer,

saw me as a human being
expressing herself.

♪ You ♪

Ooh, that smells like travel.

I knew it wasn't just luggage.

- There are some boxes mixed in.
- How exciting.

This is my record
from when I was, um...

ten and 11.

That's how I wrote it.
On that thing.

It's a Fostex 4-track,

and you literally record it
on a cassette tape

that would go backwards
and forwards,
like a reel-to-reel.

It's the only thing I could...

It was simple enough
for me to engineer.

It's such a fucking good movie.

When I read the script,
I was like, "Are you joking?

This is the greatest script."

Post-Catholic stress disorder
was very validated.

When I first moved
to Los Angeles.

Oh, this is just before
the mayhem.

Aw.

Letters to and from
all my ex-boyfriends.

"Dear Alanis..."

Ooh! I need to sage myself
tonight.

Okay, let's see.

Oh yeah, this is all writing
Jagged Little Pill.

I mean, there's gonna be
some gems in here.

This is the first version
of "Ironic" right here.

And the first version
of "Perfect".

I mean, it's basically what's on
the record, is the truth.

May 27, 1994.

I was dying to go to Los Angeles

because I felt as though I could
start with a clean slate.

People wouldn't have
any preconceived notions of,

"Oh, you can't be anything other
than who you were

when you were 15.
What are you, crazy?"

I think the cultural difference
between Canada and America

was severely underestimated.

The old saying, "LA can make you
or break you" is very true.

I think that I've learned a lot
from that city.

I've learned how
to be assertive,

I've learned to stand up
for what I believe in.

I've learned to walk away
from environments

that are just not happening.

I used to spend time
with anyone,

regardless of how
I felt with them.

And... I don't know.

It's helped me to be able
to spend time with people

that it's a mutually gratifying
kind of relationship.

I co-wrote with...

maybe four people in LA.
And then I met Glen.

When I met Alanis,
and she was 19 years old...

not knowing exactly
what she wanted to do,

but she knew damn well
what she did not want to do.

And she didn't want
to be stuck into a machine...

Big hair and dance moves.

She was looking for somebody
to be an artist with.

We talked very briefly, and then
went straight to the studio

and wrote "The Bottom Line".

It's verse and chorus.

♪ If somebody asked you
To surrender ♪

♪ And that was the only way
To win ♪

♪ If somebody offered you
The freedom to ♪

♪ Open your mind again ♪

♪ Would you take that flight?
Would you walk right in? ♪

♪ So meet me down
At the bottom line ♪

♪ And open my heart
With your hands ♪

♪ And we'll hear the sound ♪

-♪ Of pretenses falling ♪
-♪ Of pretenses falling ♪

Oh, what a line.
Oh shit.

I want to work with you.

♪ Down at the bottom... ♪

The way she was able
to turn phrases just, like,

right out of her psyche.
She's just a gifted writer.

His begged question was,
"Who are you?

What do you want
to write about?

What's going on for you?"
And what a lovely prompt.

No one's ever
asked me that ever.

I didn't have a budget,
so I just recorded it myself.

We did the demo
right on the spot.

She went in and sang it.
That was our first day.

Between February of 1994
and February of 1995,

twenty separate occasions,
that's it.

Twenty sessions, twenty songs.

- Ready?
- "You Learn".

Yeah, let's do it.

In every way, it was like
a secret, handmade project

that we just kind of
amused ourselves with.

I'm just sitting down,

dialing up a beat,
playing something on guitar.

She starts singing.

Eight hours later,
I would have the music right,

she would have the lyrics right.

She'd be ready to sing it.

That was the track.

Sometimes the song
would start

before we were even ready.

Like, he'd hit a chord,
and I'd be like...

You know?

And then I'd start recording.

♪ It feels so good ♪

Once a song is written,

I think I maybe changed lyrics
after the fact

maybe twice in my whole career.

So they're pretty locked in
once it's written.

♪ You love, you learn ♪

When I would drive home,

I would listen to the song
we worked on that day,

and I wouldn't remember
having written it.

So it was almost like
it would be

wiped out of my memory
the second it was finished.

And I loved that process,

because I could actually
listen to these songs

with objectivity at the time.
Like, almost directly after.

Without even knowing
I was doing it,

I was carving out my voice.

I love going inside,
so that's not dangerous to me.

I'm not terrified of going in.
In fact, the scarier it is,

the more I know that
I've hit pay dirt.

We couldn't get signed.

Every major record company,
and all the secondary ones,

everybody rejected us.

In November, we wrote,
"You Oughta Know",

"Head Over Feet",
"Hand in My Pocket".

We were on this,
like, major roll.

Everybody was kind of like,
"Yeah, it's, like...

I don't know. What's her look?"

After multiple rejections,

I just said, "Hey, could we...

Can you just leave us alone?
And we're just gonna write."

When she went back
to Canada for Christmas,

I didn't think I would actually
ever see her again.

Somehow, they arranged
one more trip back for her.

♪ ♪

When she came back
from Canada, she was pale...

rail-thin, and she walked
in my studio,

and she had her sweater on
backwards...

and inside out.

♪ Do I stress you out? ♪

♪ My sweater is on backwards
And inside out ♪

♪ And you say
How appropriate ♪

Oh shit, she's still on it.
Even though she's suffering,

like, she's still got
this thing, you know?

♪ And all I really want ♪

♪ Is some patience ♪

♪ A way to calm
The angry voice ♪

♪ And all I really want ♪

♪ Is deliverance ♪

I remember when I first
played the record

and it was done to some people,

they were like,
"This record is too...

It's too in-your-face.
It's too urgent.

It's too emotional," you know?

And I'm just like,
"Well, I am that right now.

And when I'm 34, I won't be,

and you won't get
a record like that."

Hi, can I order some sushi?

I started at Maverick
at the age of 18.

I didn't really know much
about the music business.

Okay, hold on.
I'll call right back.

Okay, stop filming.

I got some serious news.

-What?
-I can't tell you on film.

I didn't even know
what I was doing.

I had a briefcase
that said "Wise Guy Records".

I didn't even know
what that meant.

I just thought, "Wise guy..."

My job was to find talent
and then develop it.

And then help that talent, um,
reach an audience.

We get a call from the lawyers,

and they said, "We have a young
executive at Maverick,

Madonna's label. Just go play
this shit for them."

And I said, "We can't come."

"We're writing a song right now,
and I am not presentable."

And he said,
"No, you got to go."

I think she was in workouts.

I just picked up the acoustic
guitar, threw it in the car,

and we drove over
to Maverick Records.

I go up to grab Alanis,
and she was there with Glen.

I'm like, "Oh, okay, that's..."
I thought they were a band.

It looked very, like,
could be hippie-ish.

I'm not even sure
what's going on here.

Like... But, okay.

And then we just walked into
Guy's office right at the end.

He's like a guy that
I went to high school with.

But, you know, he went to
Beverly High School,

so he's got a little
more experience.

He's hanging out with Madonna.

They put in a cassette tape.

First song I heard
was "Perfect".

♪ Sometimes ♪

♪ Is never quite enough ♪

♪ If you're flawless ♪

♪ Then you'll win my love ♪

♪ Don't forget to win
First place ♪

♪ Don't forget to keep... ♪

Within 30 seconds,
everything changed.

I was already floored.

I had not heard
anything like it.

♪ Try a little harder... ♪

The simplicity of the way
she was able to narrate...

yet how complex it was
at the same time.

♪ How long ♪

♪ Before you screw it up? ♪

Wow, we started with...

♪ Sometimes ♪

And then we get into...
♪ Before you screw it up ♪

And you're like,
"Wait, what?"

She goes a little edgy there.

And then comes back down again.

♪ That wasn't fast enough ♪

The song "Perfect"
is the plight
of the overachiever.

Having to be perfect according
to some odd, random standard

and that you're innately bad.

I had to comment on it.

I said, "I'm in."

I didn't have to hear any more.
"I love it. I'm all-in."

♪ If you're perfect ♪

I knew it was Madonna's
boutique label,

so I was just, you know,

"How's this place
gonna be decorated?"

And, you know, it was super hip.

Although I do remember her
coming in at one point

and turning the light on.

And the whole thing fell,
and she's like,

"Fucking cheap place."

And I had been held up
at gunpoint

just before this meeting
with her.

And when I walked in, you know,
they were kind of whispery,

like, "Hey, she just got held up
at gunpoint.

She's a little PTSD, you know?"

And she was like,
"I want to...

"I want to get held up
at gunpoint.

That's just such a cool story.

I want to be held up
at gunpoint."

And I remember sending
a fax going,

"Please, let's get this done."

This is...
I was so excited about it.

I couldn't wait to have
people hear it.

In the '90s,

the way most listeners
found their new music

and their new favorite bands
was the radio.

For an artist to get their music
on KROQ,

it didn't just mean they could
get heard in Los Angeles.

They knew it could mean,
"Oh, wow. If I get on there,

I might be able to get on
all these other radio stations

in the United States, possibly
stations outside of the US."

Guy Oseary called and said,

"We have got to play you
this new artist.

She's incredible. We want
to play the music."

And we're like, "Okay.
Yeah, sure, come on in."

We always listen to music
at a ten.

It was on full blast.

And they played us
"You Oughta Know".

♪ I want you to know ♪

♪ That I'm happy for you ♪

♪ I wish nothing but ♪

♪ The best for you both ♪

♪ An older version of me ♪

♪ Is she perverted like me? ♪

♪ Would she go down on you
In a theater? ♪

♪ Does she speak eloquently? ♪

♪ And would she have
Your baby? ♪

♪ I'm sure she'd make a really
Excellent mother ♪

♪ 'Cause the love that you gave
that we made ♪

♪ Wasn't able
To make it enough ♪

♪ For you to be open wide ♪

♪ No ♪

♪ And every time you speak
Her name ♪

♪ Does she know how you told me
You'd hold me until you died? ♪

♪ Till you died
But you're still alive ♪

♪ 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 ♪

The room is, like,

eyes popping out of our heads,
going, "Holy crap.

We got to hear that
on the radio."

We walked the CD down the hall,

basically interrupted
the whole hour,

handed it to the DJ and said,

"Brand-new artist,
her name is Alanis,

you're gonna play this
right now."

♪ Did you forget about me
Mr. Duplicity? ♪

♪ I hate to bug you
In the middle of dinner ♪

♪ It was a slap in the face ♪

♪ How quickly I was replaced ♪

♪ And are you thinking of me
When you fuck her? ♪

And the phone lines
blazed.

"Who is that? Who is that?
What song is that?

"Who was that?" I mean,
just boom, boom, boom,

wanting to know what
they had just heard.

♪ And every time you speak
Her name ♪

♪ Does she know how you told me
You'd hold me until you died? ♪

♪ Till you died
But you're still alive ♪

♪ And I'm here ♪

It was immediately our
number-one requested record

for many weeks.

"You Oughta Know",

this is the song
that really broke on KROQ radio.

- And suddenly, overnight...
- Life changes.

...people are singing
this song with you,

and your audiences are around
the block waiting for you.

♪ You, you, you oughta know ♪

You're not
gonna write

a better "fuck off" song
than "You Oughta Know".

Who hasn't been dumped?

Who hasn't wanted to tell
an ex-lover to fuck off?

And who hasn't wanted to do it
in that way,

so openly and so angrily?

It's like when you dream
of walking up

and throwing the drink
in someone's face,

or just smacking them, whatever.

She did it in song.

We're all used
to the stereotype of the girl

who gets broken up with
and calls her friends crying.

And she sits on the couch,
and she eats ice cream.

She wasn't that.

Back in the '90s,

I cannot tell you
how many people were like,

"I identify with that song,
'You Oughta Know'."

And I'm like, "Who did you
blow in a movie theater?"

When that song
came out, I was, like, 12 or 13.

I...

I don't know what going down
on someone in a theater is,

you know? But I also knew
that it was something...

Like, my not knowing
made me feel like,

"Okay, this is dangerous
or different

or something far outside
my understanding."

Alanis comes along

and sings about going down
on someone in a theater,

and it's like,
"Oh, wow, that's crazy."

You know, "This is really
sexually explicit."

Really? 'Cause that's not
what I'm picking up from it.

Yeah, that's in there,
but that's not...

you know, what's speaking
to me about it.

And how about the individual

that "You Oughta Know"
is all about?

Is there a feeling that
this is almost your revenge,

-the success of your single?
-You know what?

The ironic thing is
I don't even think

he knows that the song
is about him.

-Maybe it's better he doesn't.
-You know what? I think it is.

'Cause the last thing I want
to do is to be that vindictive.

I don't think that I will be
hurt in the way that I was hurt

by the person that I wrote
"You Oughta Know" about

ever again, no.

This person,
I don't even really know

whether he knows it's about him.

And I didn't write it to get
back at him.

If I had, I think that
I'd be plastering

his picture everywhere and
telling everyone his name.

But I just really wrote it
for the sake of my own release.

Well, clearly, somebody
upset this girl.

Who is it?

And, you know, for years,
no confirmation.

She's classy. She didn't
talk about it and shit.

Everyone thinks it's...

the guy from some TV show.

It's funny, though,
because I was dating

so many more people
than just him.

But because of
"You Oughta Know",

and people saying it was
about Dave Coulier,

all this attention was like,
"She dated one person."

Who's the person?
Who gives a fuck?

It's the experience.

All I know is I wouldn't want to
be him, you know what I mean?

Like,
I don't care who he is.

But I hope whoever he is,

he went to therapy.

There's been about
eight people

who've claimed the song has
been about them.

So I'm always just like,
"Who said?"

You know, "Who said?"

Interesting that you think
that song is about you. Huh?

♪ Nails down someone else's back
I hope you feel it ♪

♪ Well, can you feel it? ♪

♪ Well, I'm here... ♪

She'd come in
at the right time

with the right attitude.

And it was very different
to what women were doing

at that time.
She really stood out.

♪ It's not fair... ♪

It was one of those
kind of songs

where you just pull over the car

and you remember, like,
"Wait, what is that?"

It doesn't sound
like anything else out there.

During that time,
it was regarded as a no-no

to play female artists
back to back.

I was not allowed to play
No Doubt into Alanis.

It was just the way things were.

Was there room
for Alanis in rock? No.

But it was simply, "You try
and ignore the song."

"You see what's gonna happen."

♪ You, you, you oughta know ♪

It happened very quickly.

As soon as that song
hit the radio,

it just picked up.

Who was this person?

And there was all the mystery,

because her first video,
her hair was in her face

and she was in the desert and
screaming, "You oughta know!"

I was sent an advance
of Jagged Little Pill.

There were no photos
that came with it,

or all the photos,
her hair was blurring her face.

My hair would cover me.

It's very convenient
having all that hair.

In the beginning,

there was definitely a style.

She kind of showed up like,

"This just came out
of my hamper."

We did a full cover
of Rolling Stone photoshoot

that had to be scrapped
because I couldn't speak up

about the fact that the clothes
that I was put in by the stylist

were not me!

You know, and then we reshot
the whole thing

with me wearing what I was
comfortable in,

and then it was great.

It definitely came up.

"Do we want to make Alanis
more beautiful?"

"Do we want to make Alanis
more grungey?"

"What's acceptable right now?"

For the first time
in the history of music,

there was a moment
where alternative artists

ruled the airwaves, ruled media,
ruled TV.

It was the thing that everybody
was buzzing on.

Alt music was your ticket
to the fair.

Whoa, one moment.

Scott Welch, the manager,

was really intent on it being
a rock band.

When it came time
to go on tour, we auditioned.

We auditioned tons of people.

Alanis put the band together
from tryouts.

And we'd play.
And I could play really loud,

and she didn't give a shit,
so...

I couldn't
remember her fucking name.

"Atlantis." I just...

"Alanis. I've never even heard
that word. That's not..."

"I don't know anyone else
named Alanis,"

so I couldn't remember the name.

In the mail, I get a cassette
of the three songs

you need to know.

The first song is
"You Oughta Know".

And that's all you
needed to hear.

That's gonna be fucking huge.

-So, Nick, where are you from?
-I'm very English.

Nick Lashley
was the guitar player,

an English cat.

And he can do
all the cool noise effects,

and he's really
a great lead guitar player.

So, Jesse, where are you from,
dude?

-From Austin, Texas.
-Yeah?

The guitar player,
Jesse,

played with the Chili Peppers
very briefly.

Jesse Tobias
and Nick Lashley

had a wonderful kind
of interplay

where they were able
to cover all the parts

that we had on the record

and add a huge amount
of power to it.

Chris, do you like to practice?

Ah!

I hate practicing.

The bass player,
Chris Chaney, was an accident.

She called the wrong
person back.

And we tried him out,
and she's like...

"I didn't mean to call
this guy."

"I didn't mean to call
this guy."

I swear.

- You ready?
- I just was me.

I just showed up
in what I was wearing.

No fashion sense.
No true "style," right?

I felt a little intimidated.

'Cause he was a jazz guy,
so he's like,

"I don't know."

He didn't even understand
if it was good music, really.

And I was like, "Well, you know,

you've missed
the last five years,

so here's fucking Soundgarden,
and here's Jane's Addiction."

Learn it, live it, love it.

And he gets it now.

He's in Jane's Addiction now,
which is...

"ironic."

In the '90s? I mean, yes.

But, no.

You know, I'd had my challenges
with women...

you know, women who wanted
to be in my seat or...

You know, there was always
such a scarcity mindset,

like there was only
room for one.

You know, for me, hanging out
with the guys was just easier.

Once we all knew none of us
were gonna be romantic,

it was like, "Oh, cool, let's
just make some shows."

And the first show
that we did,

we did a showcase
for sort of friends and family.

Literally,
it was our girlfriends

and people from
the record company...

Madonna's over there.

-Where?
-Right there.

...and Madonna.

It was like, "Fuck,
Madonna's right there."

For the last
few months,

since we signed Alanis,

everybody's been saying to me,
"What's she look like?"

You know, "What does she do?"

Anyway, I just want
to introduce someone

who we're real crazy about,
Alanis Morissette.

Maverick did a showcase
with her.

It was the first time
we saw her live.

She was amazing.
She was absolutely amazing.

♪ 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 ♪

♪ You like snow ♪

♪ But only if it's warm ♪

The next night, she played
at a place called Dragonfly.

We got to this little club,

and there were people lined up
around the block.

It was like in one day,
you couldn't get in the room.

♪ There's no sentimental value
to the rose ♪

The single had been out
for a week by then,

and there was literally 5,000
people trying to get in.

♪ 'Cause it's easy not to ♪

♪ So much easier ♪

This was the show
that everyone had to be at.

This was before she was massive,

but everyone knew
she was gonna be massive.

So, yeah, I was just 21.

- Yeah.
- Cheers, Glen.

- Cheers, queers, stairs, and...
- Cheers, queers.

- Cheers, Nicky.
- Cheers.

Whoo-hoo! Party on, Garth.

He went like this...

That's a big dick. This guy's
got the fuckin' rock...

It's me.

-Say hello.
-Hello.

I remember Scott Welch
pulled me aside

just after the auditions when
we hired our bandmates.

He just kind of yanked me in,
and he goes,

"You got to start being
a boss, Alanis."

And I said, "I'm 20.
I don't know how to be a boss."

He's like, "Well, you better
figure it out fast."

This is Alanis' room.

And it's a fucking mess.

She's got no clue.
Where are we going tomorrow?

-Where are we going tomorrow?
-We're here tomorrow.

-We're staying here tomorrow.
-Yes.

Okay, but we have no clue
where we're going.

We did a van tour.

The first two to three months
was in a van.

No messing around for John John.

This is a private moment.

White tablecloths
and silver linens,

that's all he uses.

What the hell is going on here?

And we fucking literally
went from the West Coast

all the way to New York.

At least get monitors together
to start with.

-You want me up?
-Yeah.

Okay.

At least get some
stage line together

-and monitor level together.
-Okay.

It's my perspective.

And it just fucking
went nuclear, man.

It was, like, it went
fucking nuclear.

Thank you.

This song's called
"Hand in My Pocket".

♪ I'm broke but I'm happy ♪

♪ I'm poor but I'm kind ♪

♪ I'm short but I'm healthy ♪

♪ Yeah ♪

♪ I'm high but I'm grounded ♪

♪ I'm sane but I'm overwhelmed ♪

♪ I'm lost but I'm hopeful,
baby ♪

♪ And what it all
comes down to ♪

♪ Is that everything's gonna be
fine, fine, fine ♪

♪ 'Cause I've got one hand
in my pocket ♪

♪ And the other one is giving
a high-five ♪

♪ Well, I feel drunk
but I'm sober ♪

I have the towel.

I have the towel she sweated on!

What did you think
of Alanis' show?

-I thought it was pretty wicked,
-She's the best.

I thought it was great.
I thought Alanis was great.

It was awesome.

Her show was, like, wicked.
It was really good.

♪ I'm wrong, and I'm sorry,
baby ♪

"Hand in My Pocket"
was the jam.

It's mulling over
all these contradictions,

and it's not exactly seeking
an answer,

as much it is seeking
an affirmation

that the contradictions
are okay to live with.

♪ 'Cause I've got one hand
in my pocket ♪

♪ And the other one is flicking
a cigarette ♪

Women historically
have always just been allowed

to have one approach,
one face, one message.

And here was this artist saying,

"Well, I'm this, but I'm
also that."

♪ 'Cause I've got one hand
in my pocket ♪

♪ And the other one is giving
a peace sign ♪

♪ I'm free, but I'm focused... ♪

Alanis Morissette
was one of those people

that came along
that I thought, "This girl

could do incredibly
well internationally."

They did launch her, obviously,
in America

with "You Oughta Know".
But the real hit,

the record that kind of
blew it all up,

was "Hand in My Pocket".

♪ Baby ♪

♪ And what it all
comes down to ♪

♪ Is that everything's gonna be
fine, fine, fine ♪

♪ 'Cause I've got one hand
in my pocket ♪

♪ And the other one is
playing the piano ♪

♪ And what it all comes down to
my dear friend ♪

♪ Yeah, yeah ♪

♪ Is that everything is just ♪

♪ Fine, fine, fine ♪

♪ 'Cause I've got one hand
in my pocket ♪

♪ And the other one
is hailing a taxi cab ♪

We played
The Prince's Trust.

That show was the biggest show
we did on the entire tour.

Bob Dylan was on that,
Eric Clapton.

And then Alanis Morissette.

All I know is I couldn't
hear anything.

I literally could not
hear me sing

because everyone was
singing so loudly.

Thank you very much.

You can go from being
unknown to known by everybody.

It was that one word.
It was "Alanis".

And you knew exactly
who you're talking about.

Radio made superstars back then.

And then you got the MTV
component

and it's mega-stardom.

When "You Oughta Know"
came out,

because it was blurry, I wasn't
being recognized on the street.

So I could still
walk everywhere.

Once "Hand in My Pocket" came
out, that was super clear.

And I remember walking
down a street in New York,

and all of a sudden,
people were...

running up to me.

Music videos in the '90s
were at their absolute apex.

MTV.

MTV was the path by which

any mainstream artist
had to travel.

There was so much
happening.

It was really an exciting
time in music.

That just speaks to how much
Alanis was up against

when Jagged Little Pill
dropped.

You know, for it to dominate
the way it did,

when you look at what else was
out there, that is really...

phenomenal.

♪ I recommend getting your
heart trampled on ♪

♪ To anyone ♪

♪ Yeah ♪

♪ Oh, yeah ♪

♪ I recommend walking around ♪

♪ Naked in your living room ♪

♪ Yeah ♪

♪ Swallow it down ♪

♪ What a jagged little pill... ♪

We've been to many
different countries.

-Where are we?
-Sydney, Australia.

We've been to Australia,
all over North America,

all over Europe,
Southeast Asia, Japan...

Mount Fuji.

I love being on a tour bus
at 3:00 in the morning,

going through the mountains
in Europe.

You know, there's so
many moments

where we'd look at each other,
bandmates, and just be like...

"Oh, my God!"

♪ You scream ♪

♪ You learn ♪

♪ I recommend biting off
more than you can chew ♪

Stop it, man.

Our next guest
is one of the year's

most provocative
and talked-about singers.

Her CD is called
Jagged Little Pill.

Please welcome
Alanis Morissette.

The best new artist,
Alanis Morissette.

-Alanis Morissette.
-Alanis Morissette.

Hi, I'm David Bowie,
but this is Alanis Morissette.

And the album of the year
is Jagged Little Pill.

And the winner is Jagged
Little Pill, Alanis Morissette.

Alanis Morissette.

-Alanis Morissette.
-Thank you.

It was so huge.

The biggest debut album
of any female artist ever.

Jagged Little Pill was
the second-best selling album

in the '90s and sold

33 million worldwide
up until now.

♪ You learn ♪

The industry
discovers, "Wait a minute."

"This is actually lucrative."

"Look, there's
a whole demographic

that we haven't tapped."

"You know, women who
actually, like,

want to hear from themselves."

"So let's do that.
Let's push that."

Lilith Fair became
a thing,

and I think Alanis played a huge
part in opening that door.

There was a lot
of women at that time,

whether it was Fiona Apple,
whether it was Missy Elliot,

whether it was Courtney Love.

There were so many of us,

but Alanis proved to the world

and to the music business
that all of us were viable.

So much energy.

It's like, the whole room is
like...

And I'm like...

It's like the perfect, perfect
poetic tantrum.

We would do
all the songs

from the record, no question.

We had all these segues
to just fill space.

We would do "We Will Rock You"
by Queen.

♪ Buddy, you're a boy
Make a big noise ♪

♪ Playing in the street
Gonna be a big man someday ♪

♪ You got mud on your face
You big disgrace ♪

♪ Kicking your can
All over the place ♪

Sing it!

♪ We will, we will
rock you ♪

One more time!
Come on, sing it!

♪ We will, we will
rock you ♪

We would do
an ABBA song.

♪ If you change your mind ♪

♪ I'm the first in line ♪

♪ Honey, I'm still free ♪

♪ Take a chance on me ♪

Or a Radiohead song.

♪ In the fake plastic earth ♪

♪ That she bought from
a rubber man ♪

♪ To get rid of itself ♪

♪ It wears her out ♪

♪ It wears her out ♪

She was in a position now
where it's like,

"Who do you want to open
for you?"

Radiohead opened up
for us on tour.

♪ But I'm a creep ♪

I like to think
and tell myself

that I basically influenced
them heavily.

We would do our
sound check and then watch them.

Radiohead would take two hours
to sound check.

They were writing OK Computer.

I got along with the band
really good.

I got along with Thom good too.
"Thom." I call him "Thom."

Taylor was more hanging out
with them.

I tried at first.

Like, "I could be your friend,
and I'll come to your..."

"No, okay, bye."

You know, the fucking aloofness
killed me dead.

Fuck, Hollywood is ennui.

I was dying from the aloofness.

We were playing with Neil Young
in Europe,

a whole bunch of dates,
so I'm listening

to all his catalogue right now.

Everyone loves Neil Young.

It's good to play with him,
yeah.

He's Canadian,
and he's a great artist.

And he's got a lot
of sort of musical history,

and he's very sage.

So it'll be good to be around
that kind of a vibe for a while.

There were so many people
that came to her show.

Beck rode with us on the bus,
Dave Grohl rode with us.

We were with

the Foo Fighters
a lot of the time.

And the Foo Fighters rock.

Dave would leave notes sometimes

'cause they knew we'd
be playing the club

a week later or something.

♪ Ob-la-di, ob-la-da ♪

♪ Life goes on, wah ♪

♪ La, la, how the life goes on ♪

♪ Ob-la-di, ob-la-da ♪

♪ Life goes on, wah ♪

♪ La, la, how the life goes on ♪

♪ Ob-la-di, ob-la-da ♪

♪ Life goes on, wah ♪

♪ La, la, how the life goes on ♪

♪ Ob-la-di, ob-la-da ♪

♪ Life goes on, wah ♪

♪ La, la, how the life goes on ♪

Whoo!

Thank you, God bless you.

- Where? Did we miss it?
- Come back around.

I remember
being protective of her.

I remember playing clubs

and guys trying to sneak
backstage and stuff,

just a little bit.

But I just remember us being,
like, protective of her.

And her being sort of
protective of us

and also being like, you know,

"You guys being good boys
out here?"

Which, of course,
we were fucking not at all.

I mean, the most debaucherous
tour I've ever done in my life

was with Alanis Morissette.

Aloha.

We were just partying.

Like, that's what
our heroes did.

I remember Slash saying,

"God, I remember hearing about
how you guys were on that tour."

"I mean, I heard you guys were
partying harder than we were."

These, like, 24,
25-year-old guys.

We have, like, hormones on fire.

Now we're rock stars playing

with the biggest pop star
on the planet.

Chicago!

Hey, Taylor!

''Hey, there's the man.

-I started this. I started...
-Good job.

-That's her pen.
-He's so hot, isn't he?

-Yeah!
-Yeah.

As Alanis is rising,

strong woman,
standing up for, you know...

just, like, feminism,
you know, essentially.

And...

And we were all just,
the whole band was just...

trying to fuck as many chicks
as we possibly could

the whole time.

Here we have Jesse Tobias

getting in on
the autograph scam.

Got a lot of young ladies
that want to meet him.

Can we be your groupies and tag
along on the road with you?

These young women

are coming just to hear
what I have to say,

and then you're manipulating
the groupie conversation?

Even the word "groupie",
I'm like, "No."

You mean a human fucking being
coming to a show.

Agenda-d or not.
Doesn't fucking matter.

We had a stack of
after-show passes.

I can't believe I'm gonna
tell you this.

We literally had a room

on the other side of the arena,

and our guitar tech would
give out passes.

To bring women backstage
who just are dying.

They want to meet Alanis.
Maybe they want to meet us,

but we know they want
to meet Alanis.

The hypocrisy of what her music
and message was,

then here you have us,
like, scoundrels.

You know, trying to get laid.

You know what?
Taylor's out there stealing all

the young girls, Alanis.

-He's right there, hon.
-He's in here.

You fucking liar!

What are you talking about,
you turkey?

And then Alanis found out
about that,

and she got so fucking
pissed at us.

It did feel disrespectful to me.

Some of the behavior
just didn't match

my mission or my value system
at all.

But I'd only grown up
around men.

So I just thought, "Okay, well,

you gonna replace them
with five other men

that are gonna do the exact same
thing and won't sound as great?"

All those years of sitting in my
bedroom practicing my guitar,

how did they get me
to right now?

What can I ask you?

What's it like being a male
playing in a band with a woman?

I think, in a sense,

lead singers are
their own breed.

A dime a dozen?

No, they're
their own breed,

whether you're male or female.

You guys, this looks so amazing.
I'm dying.

When you are
the only woman

in a male-dominated environment,

no matter what the relationship
is with your peers

or your employees,

it's still, I think, very
complicated and complex.

Men have not been raised
to believe

that women should have

as much social and economic
power as they do.

I didn't pay attention to
who her band was. But...

were we supposed to?

- Michelle. There she is.
- Hi.

- Hi, cutie.
- Hi.

The fact
that the band wasn't

"Alanis Morissette
and the Heartbreakers",

the fact that they weren't

headlining with their names
and Alanis,

it might have been
hard for them.

It was what it was.
I mean, it's my record.

This is Jagged Little Pill.

And you're all knocking it
out of the park

and taking it to a whole
other level.

But there was no way around
the fact that it was me.

You auditioned for...

You auditioned to be
in the band for a solo artist.

So, if that's not what
you're okay with...

you don't have to be here.

♪ I want you to know ♪

♪ That I'm happy for you ♪

♪ I wish nothing but ♪

♪ The best for you both ♪

♪ An older version of me
Is she perverted like me? ♪

♪ Will she go down on you
in a theatre? ♪

♪ Does she speak eloquently? ♪

♪ And would she have your baby ♪

♪ I'm sure she'd make
a really excellent mother ♪

♪ 'Cause the love that you gave
that we made ♪

♪ Wasn't able to make it enough
for you to be open wide ♪

♪ No ♪

♪ And every time
you speak her name ♪

♪ Does she know how you told me
you'd hold me until you died ♪

♪ Till you died
But you're still alive ♪

♪ But I'm here to remind you ♪

♪ Of the mess you left... ♪

As soon as Alanis'
started becoming a thing,

of course came the idea
that she was Svengali'd

because she wrote the record
with Glen Ballard.

Therefore, clearly, it's good,
so it had to come from a man.

It's still an instinct
to diminish any woman

who isn't willing to participate

in the little box that has been
carved out for her in society.

All the
Jagged Little Pill
reviews that I read

were written by men

who could not move
beyond this binary of,

"Well, she's angrier
than we'd like her to be."

When I write really
angry songs about someone,

I'm not writing
to get back at that person,

I'm writing because
it's the only environment

where I can get angry and not
have it be destructive.

It's just an expression,
unjudged, uncensored.

It's a very pure, sacred place
to me.

"You Oughta Know"
created this perception

that Alanis was this
rageful, vengeful,

angry young woman.

And of course,
that's gendered, right?

Of course, so much of it was,
at its core,

"Well, why is this woman
so angry?"

Even in the reviews that praised
Jagged Little Pill,

there are people who were
just, like, "Well, gosh,

she's just so angry."

They were bearing witness
to someone who was

an immensely gifted writer.

It was easier to kind of, like,
backhandedly compliment

the writing while couching
it in, "But she's so angry."

Empowerment
as a young woman in the '90s

was exciting for a lot
of people.

But it was also not good news
for the patriarchy.

All of a sudden, I started
naming it or singing about it.

That was not welcome.

If you spoke up, you were just
immediately shut down...

and shamed.

♪ That you gave to me ♪

♪ You, you, you oughta know ♪

The point in my writing
these songs...

I was not writing to punish.

I was writing to express
and get it out of my body

because I didn't want
to get sick.

When I was younger, I spent
a lot of time with adults.

And I immersed myself in
an industry that, you know,

forces you to have an
accelerated growth.

So you have to grow up
in order to control

what's happening to you,
I suppose.

Yeah, self-protection,
self-preservation.

I mean, I had no idea what
the concept

of "professional boundary"
meant.

But it was me getting
a sense of...

boundaries, or lack thereof.

Have you had
some bad loves?

Yes, definitely.

I've had a lot of sort of
negative relationships,

definitely. Um...

partly... you know, partly my
responsibility, really.

I take... You know,
I take responsibility for those.

No, no, no, you don't have
to blame yourself.

I'm not blaming myself.
I'm taking part responsibility.

Me not telling specific
information about

my experience as a teenager

was almost solely around
wanting to protect.

Protect my parents, protect...

my brothers,
protect future partners,

protect myself,
protect my physical safety.

Yeah.

I'm gonna need some help,

'cause I never talk
about this shit.

There was a lot of shame

around having any kind of
victimization of any kind.

And it took me years in therapy
to even admit

that there had been any kind
of victimization on my part.

I would always say, you know,

"I was consenting."
You know?

And then I'd be reminded, like,
"Hey, you were 15."

"You're not consenting at 15."

Now I'm like, "Oh yeah,
they're all pedophiles."

"It's all statutory rape."

I did tell a few people
and they...

You know, it kind of fell
on deaf ears a little bit.

It would usually be a "stand up,
walk out of the room" moment.

So a lot of people say, "Why did
that woman wait 30 years?"

I'm like, "Fuck off, they didn't
wait 30 years."

"No one was listening, or their
livelihood was threatened,

or their family was threatened."

So, yeah, the whole
"why do women wait" thing,

women don't wait.

A culture doesn't listen.

Whenever people talk
about the album,

they are often quick to talk
about the anger in it,

but not about the release or
the joy or the pleasure in it.

Because Jagged Little Pill
is also a humorous album.

And it's also playful,
and it's also layered.

It's also heartbreaking,
but promising.

None of the rest of that album
is that angry.

What about songs like
"Head Over Feet"?

What about songs like
"You Learn"?

I mean, come on,
you throw

a fucking rock at that album,

you hit a song that somebody
sang, anthem-like,

over and over and over again.

There's only one song that
I wanted on the record

that nobody really wanted
on the record.

It was called "Ironic".

I begged. And we put it
way down the list.

♪ An old man ♪

♪ Turned 98 ♪

♪ He won the lottery ♪

♪ And died the next day ♪

The idea of something that's
almost perfect

and then something ruins it.

♪ It's a death row pardon ♪

♪ Two minutes too late ♪

♪ Isn't it ironic? ♪

♪ Don't you think? ♪

For her to write, "It's like
rain on your wedding day..."

It's like...

What a hook.

I'm sorry, she just
fucking nailed it.

♪ It's like rain ♪

♪ On your wedding day ♪

♪ It's a free ride ♪

♪ When you've already paid ♪

♪ It's the good advice ♪

♪ That you just didn't take ♪

♪ And who would've thought? ♪

♪ It figures ♪

♪ Mr. Play-It-Safe
was afraid to fly ♪

♪ He packed his suitcase
and kissed his kids goodbye ♪

♪ He waited his whole damn life
to take that flight ♪

She almost writes
with communal gathering in mind.

Alanis is one of those artists
who has mastered

the shout-along crescendo.

♪ It's like rain
on your wedding day ♪

♪ It's a free ride
when you've already paid ♪

♪ It's the good advice
that you just didn't take ♪

♪ And who would have thought?
It figures ♪

A-one, and a-two,
and a-one, two, three.

♪ Well, life has a funny way
of sneaking up on you ♪

♪ When you think
everything's okay ♪

♪ And everything's going right ♪

♪ And yeah, well ♪

♪ Life has a funnier way
of helping you out ♪

♪ When you think
everything's gone very wrong ♪

♪ And everything blows up
in your face ♪

It's a female artist
singing about

a female life and identity

that transcended gender,

where dudes could be like,
"I feel the same way."

She's also great
with imagery.

While people were arguing over
the linguistic use of irony,

I think they missed out
on the imagery.

♪ It's like 10,000 spoons ♪

♪ When all you need is a knife ♪

Ten thousand spoons
when all you need is a knife.

Who comes up with that shit?
Alanis, you know?

♪ Isn't it ironic? ♪

When you talk about rain
on your wedding day,

I can see and feel
the disappointment

that comes with that.

I didn't know what that was
when I was 13, 14.

♪ It's like rain ♪

♪ On your wedding day ♪

♪ It's a free ride ♪

♪ When you've already paid ♪

♪ It's the good advice ♪

♪ That you just didn't take ♪

♪ And who would have thought? ♪

♪ It figures ♪

♪ Yeah, yeah, well ♪

♪ Life has a funny way
of sneaking up on you ♪

Hey, do you want me
to go straight

-and we'll come back around?
-Want to get down?

Here you go.

God.

I couldn't leave
my hotel room.

We'd land somewhere, and there'd
be 10,000, 20,000 people.

And I'd walk through, and people
would snip pieces of my hair

or just punch me.

That's where I was like,
"This can't be personal."

"This isn't personal."

"This is just... a thing...

that has almost nothing
to do with me."

Being in the public eye is not
a normal social construct.

I used to will myself to go
back to sleep,

because my waking life
felt like such a dream.

And when I would sleep,
it felt like a normal life.

♪ And all I really want ♪

♪ Is some comfort ♪

♪ A way to get my hands untied ♪

♪ And all I really want ♪

♪ Is some justice ♪

♪ All I really want ♪

You're in a lot
of positions

where you want
to connect with people.

There was less of a sense
of community

than I thought there would be.

And there's a lot of illusion
within all of what I do.

There's a lot of mystery
surrounding it.

And when you really get inside
of it and you realize

that success as such may not
give you what it has

promised it would give you,

it can be very disheartening
but equally exciting

because it allows you
to question everything.

So how are you?
How was this tour for you?

The most intense thing
probably in my entire life.

Really?

We toured hard.

Eighteen months
of hard-core touring.

I mean, it was literally 18
months of just fucking,

"Where are we?"

"Here's your hotel key."

My work addiction
wasn't really addressed.

I didn't even know there
was such thing.

If we say we work
till 5:00 in the morning,

someone would go,
"Oh, that's great."

"You must have gotten so
much done," you know?

But if I said I did heroin
till 5:00 in the morning,

people would be concerned,
understandably.

Life changing, good
or bad, is still traumatic.

And all of our lives changed
on that tour.

Thank God our last show's
in Hawaii.

What a beautiful place
to finish it out.

Yeah, in Hawaii,
I just thought, "Oh my God...

this is over for now," you know?

And I hadn't lived anywhere.

I didn't have a home
for the whole tour.

And, you know, friendship-wise,
it was a very tenuous time

in terms of, who do I trust?
Who's a real friend?

Who's here for opportunistic
reasons?

Who's here for exploitation
reasons?

Who's here because they
actually love me?

You know?

Thank you very much, everyone.

Thank you so much,
it's been great.

Bye.

We finished
that last show in Hawaii.

Yeah, I wasn't sure what was
gonna happen.

What are you gonna do
when you're done for a while?

God, I don't know.

- Go crazy for a little while.
- Yeah?

You know, just play drums, surf.

Surf?

And that's when I heard
on the radio

that Foo Fighters
were looking for a drummer.

And I knew I'd better
figure out my next move.

-Okay, we won't use that.
-Okay.

I went on to join
the Foo Fighters.

I remember calling her,
and she cried. And I felt...

Like I was leaving her,
you know?

But I also knew she didn't
need me.

It was definitely kind of
a "breaking up of a family"

sort of thing.
After 18 months of that,

I think that was hurtful to her.

And I think she felt
a little bit like I,

you know, betrayed her.

Okay, Taylor.

-Simple messages. Little things.
-All right.

I was full devastated.

You know, you spend time
with these people,

and you witness each other
in these contexts

that are really unusual,

and then you go your
separate ways.

And it's almost like...

their view of what had happened

goes with them.

And so it's almost like certain
chapters and eras disappear

when the witnesses disappear.

♪ What's the matter Mary Jane? ♪

♪ Had a hard day? ♪

♪ As you place the don't disturb
sign on the door ♪

♪ You lost your place
in line again ♪

♪ What a pity ♪

♪ You never seem to want
to dance anymore ♪

♪ It's a long way down ♪

♪ On this rollercoaster ♪

♪ The last chance ♪

♪ Streetcar ♪

♪ Went off the track ♪

♪ And you're on it ♪

This is the most peaceful I've
ever been in my whole life.

With what this last year
and a half has given me,

you'd think that I wouldn't be
peaceful right now.

But I think it's forced me to go

either to a peaceful place
or a crazy place.

♪ You're the sweet crusader ♪

♪ And you're on your way ♪

♪ You're last great ♪

♪ Innocent ♪

♪ And that's why I love you ♪

I'm really happy right now,
happy for my own reasons.

Not happy because
I've sold millions of records,

not happy because...

Not happy because I am
playing stadiums,

not happy because I'm touring
the world necessarily,

not happy because I'm "winning
awards", quote, unquote.

But I'm happy because I've
finally reached a place

where I can create what I want

and where I don't have to worry
about putting food on my plate.

For an artist
who comes into it as themselves,

with messy hair,

with the clothes from
their closet

rather than what the record
company dressed them in,

somebody whose image
wasn't concocted and fabricated,

it's pretty phenomenal that she
broke through as big as she did

and has had the longevity
that she has had,

because none of that
should have ever happened

if you went along with
what the rules are

in rock and pop fame.

But nobody told her that,
apparently.

Alanis opened a bunch
of different doors

for artists that came after her.

She inspired a generation

of confessional female
singer-songwriters.

♪ And I'm here ♪

♪ To remind you ♪

Only in hindsight
am I aware of what Alanis did

for every woman that's
come up behind her.

♪ To deny me ♪

♪ Of the cross you bear ♪

When you're battering
down 30 million doors,

that's helping everyone.
That's helping every woman

have just that little more
chance of being successful.

After
Jagged Little Pill,

her two next albums debuted
at number one on Billboard.

And even as music is changing,

even as, you know, the names
of the artists

at the top of those charts
are changing,

she's dropping in at the top.

From Jagged Little Pill
all the way up to Broadway,

what is the core thing
that pulled her through

and kept her sane

and made it so she
didn't implode

like a billion other artists
was the music.

To get shot out of
a fame rocket,

it's a very isolating
experience.

I'm so thankful that
she survived it...

that she is surviving it,

because, you know,
it's a one-way street.

And that she just has done it
with such grace

and constant self-preservation.

I take it really seriously.

I take my healing and recovery
work really, really seriously.

And I've done a lot of therapy,
copious amounts of therapy.

I feel very open.

I feel like the future
is limitless.

All of this has just begun.

All of this exploration
has just begun.

I knew pretty intuitively that
there was no way to re-create

something that ineffable
and magical.

And I thought the idea
of chasing some kind

of repetition was ridiculous.

But I also trusted
the ebbs and flows

of fame, under a rock,
fame, under a rock,

fame, loved, hated,
hated, hated, loved, loved,

fame, under the rock.

I mean, that's just how
my whole life has been

to this day.

You know, I'm either super
public, or I'm in my sweatpants,

writing, creating, generating,

stepping out, public,
and then hiding again.

I mean, that's just how it is.

That's how I survive it.

Work it.

Yeah.

All right, I'm gonna see
what I can get done.

I got a bunch of stuff here,
but...

No, and the thing is, is like...

she could also sign them

tomorrow, like,
when you and I have

our call with her
at 3:00, you know what I mean?

Hello, it smells good in here.

Okay.

Hi, Mommy.

-Hi, gorgeous.
-What are you doing?

I'm singing the song
about you and Winter and Ever.

Would you like to sit on a chair
next to me,

or would you like me
to hold you?

I want you to hold me!

Ready?

Ready, ready, ready, ready.

Why do we need that?

'Cause if I go...

...and some spit goes on there,
it sounds like "poof",

as opposed to...

- Here we go.
- Okay.

Performing
the song "Ablaze"

from her first album
in eight years,

here's the one and only
Alanis Morissette.

The music's playing, Mommy.

It is. It's an intro.

Okay, then sing it.

♪ First thing
that you'll notice ♪

♪ Is some separation
from each other ♪

♪ Yes, it's a lie ♪

♪ We've been believing
since time immemorial ♪

♪ There was an apple
There was a snake ♪

♪ There was division ♪

♪ There was a split ♪

♪ There was a conflict
in the fabric of life ♪

Sorry, but that's not
the same time as...

Okay, sorry.

♪ To my boy ♪

♪ All that energy, so vital ♪

♪ Love your hues ♪

♪ And your blues
in equal measure ♪

♪ Your comings
And your goings-away ♪

♪ My mission is to keep
the light in your eyes ablaze ♪

-Hi, Mom.
-Hi, baby.

I really like that, and that.

♪ To my girl ♪

♪ All your innocence and fire ♪

♪ When you reach out ♪

♪ I am here hell or high water ♪

♪ This nest is never
going away ♪

-Did you say "nest"?
-Nest.

My mission is to keep...

-Well, why did you say "nest"?
-'Cause it's a nest.

Oh.

♪ Ablaze ♪

So, are you gonna sing soon?

-Sure.
-Okay.

Five one way,
five the other way.

-Five one way.
-The whole stack?

And then while she's
doing the stack,

you can make
the next stack...

-Tidy.
-Homogenous.

-Facing the same way.
-Okay.

There's one.

This is huge to have...

- Huge.
- Manpower.

That one's good.

I love these signatures.
It's like, every time...

You're the only one, believe me.

- People are like, "Oh."
- Yeah.

I'm like, "What?"

- They're like, "Oh."
- All right, you want...

Fine, you want a nice,
neat fake-ass one?

You want me to just print it?

Yeah.

Strangely satisfying.

When I hear Jagged Little Pill,

whether it's through
the beautiful voices

of the Jagged Little Pill
musical,

or whether it's while
I'm singing it,

or hearing it on the radio...

There's a kindness.

It's like this velvet kindness.

No matter how pissed off
she is...

It's like there's mercy in it.

There's empathy in it.

There's hope,
even when the song is hopeless.

There's a little dreg of...

Of "everything's gonna be okay,
no matter how horrible it gets."

♪ I couldn't help it ♪

♪ It's all your fault ♪

♪ You've already won me over ♪

♪ In spite of me ♪

♪ Don't be alarmed if I fall ♪

♪ Head over feet ♪

♪ And don't be surprised
if I love you ♪

♪ For all that you are ♪

♪ I couldn't help it ♪

♪ It's all your fault ♪

♪ Your love is thick ♪

♪ And it swallowed me whole ♪

♪ You're so much braver ♪

♪ Than I gave you credit for ♪

♪ That's not lip service ♪

♪ You've already won me over ♪

♪ In spite of me ♪

♪ And don't be alarmed
if I fall ♪

♪ Head over feet ♪

♪ And don't be surprised
if I love you ♪

♪ For all that you are ♪

♪ I couldn't help it ♪

♪ It's all your fault ♪

♪ You are the bearer ♪

♪ Of unconditional things ♪

♪ You held your breath ♪

♪ And the door for me ♪

♪ Thanks for your patience ♪

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