Jagged Little Pill: The story of Alanis Morissette's classic 1995 album

13 June 2021, 19:00

Released on 13 June 1995, this was the album that turned the Canadian singer-songwriter into a worldwide star.

Alanis Morrisette photographed in London in 1996
Alanis Morrisette photographed in London in 1996. Picture: Mick Hutson/Getty Images

Alanis Morissette delighted her fans across the world with the announcement of a global Jagged Little Pill 25th Anniversary Tour for the autumn of 2021. But how much do you actually know about this classic 90s album?

Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill album artwork
Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill album artwork. Picture: Album Artwork
  1. Jagged Little Pill was technically NOT a debut album

    While Jagged Little Pill - which came out on 13 June 1995 - was the first album Alanis Morissette released internationally, it was technically her third studio album overall.

    It was preceded by two records, which were released in Canada only; Alanis (1991) and Now Is The Time (1992).

  2. The album was initially rejected by every major label

    According to Alanis. who spoke on the on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, no record labels were interested in what she had at first.

    "Not an uncommon thing for rejection," she told the late show host. "I had written 10 initial [songs] to get my whistle wet, and then when we got the rejections I asked everybody to stop so I could go back under my rock and keep writing."

  3. It was eventually picked up by Madonna's co-founded label, Maverick Records

    Maverick, which was founded by the Queen of Pop in 1992 with Frederick Devan and Veronica Dashev, was formerly owned and operated by Warner Music Group.

    Alanis told Fallonl: "I went back and wrote more, and then once I was writing All I Really Want - which is the last song on the record - with Glen (Ballard) we got a call from Maverick, Madonna's label [...] so we played [for the A&R guy] You Oughta Know, and Perfect and Hand In My Pocket and he was very excited..."

    Alanis Morissette shooting the video for Hand In My Pocket in New York City in 1995.
    Alanis Morissette shooting the video for Hand In My Pocket in New York City in 1995. Picture: Ebet Roberts/Redferns/Getty Images
  4. Ironic wasn't the album's lead single

    Alanis might most be known across the globe for her Ironic single and video, but it was actually You Oughta Know that was released first, on 7 July 1995.

    After the brutally honest and scathing track was played on radio and the likes of MTV, further singles in All I Really Want and Hand in My Pocket helped her secure a No.1.

    Only then did her fourth, Ironic - which was released on February 27 1996 - go on to be her biggest hit.

  5. Dave Navarro and Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea both feature on the album

    The album's lead single You Oughta Know features music from the RHCP bassist Flea and one-time guitarist Dave Navarro.

    The pair created the song in the studio together, and were asked to re-write the music for Alanis.

    Chad Smith, Flea, Dave Navarro and Anthony Kiedis of Red Hot Chili Peppers at the1995 MTV Video Music Awards
    Chad Smith, Flea, Dave Navarro and Anthony Kiedis of Red Hot Chili Peppers at the1995 MTV Video Music Awards. Picture: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc/Getty Images
  6. Jagged Little Pill is one of the best selling albums of all time

    If you were alive in 1995 then this fact probably won't surprise you, but if for some reason you were living under a rock - Jagged Little Pill was absolutely MASSIVE.

    It went to No.1 in thirteen countries, won four GRAMMY Awards and made Morissette the first Canadian artist to achieve double diamond sales.

    In fact, Jagged Little Pill sold over 33 million copies worldwide and went 10 times platinum in the UK alone.

    Alanis Morissette onstage circa 1995
    Alanis Morissette onstage circa 1995. Picture: Lester Cohen/Getty Images