Jagged Little Pill Acoustic

Studio Album by released in 2005

Jagged Little Pill Acoustic review

Alanis Morissette was one of the most unlikely stars of the mid-'90s. A former child actress turned dance-pop diva, Morissette transformed herself into a confessional alternative singer/songwriter, in the vein of Liz Phair and Tori Amos. However, she added enough pop sensibility, slight hip-hop flourishes, and marketing savvy to that formula to become a superstar with her third album, Jagged Little Pill. The biggest-selling album by a female artist in history, Jagged Little Pill is 16 times platinum and Billboard's Top Pop Album of the 90's. Now, celebrating its 10th anniversary, Morissette and producer/co-writer Glen Ballard have recorded the entire album in an acoustic version. Jagged Little Pill Acoustic features the songs in their original order.

Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill Acoustic seems like a stronger, more contemplative album than the original, not so much a pure acoustic album as a second draft. Not The Doctor stands up best of all, and takes on layers of depth completely beyond the original track. It doesn't even sound like the same song, and in fact this is true of much of the disc. Perfect is introduced with echoey auditorium reverb on the vocals and a simple piano accompaniment, giving the unmistakable impression of a junior high talent show performance. Perhaps most dramatically, the heavy overproduction that killed Forgiven on the original record is replaced with a faintly latin-ish flavor that finally lets you hear what Alanis is singing. The wonderful little a capella bonus track on the end of Jagged Little Pill Acoustic, Your House, is on the album as well, similarly uncredited. Jagged Little Pill Acoustic is just what the doctor ordered.

Morissette was born and raised in Ottawa, Canada. In her childhood, she began playing piano and writing songs. In 1991, she moved to Toronto and released her debut album, Alanis. Alanis was a collection of pop-oriented dance numbers and ballads selling over 100,000 copies. In 1992, she released Now Is the Time, an album that closely resembled her debut. Following the release of Now Is the Time, Morissette relocated to Los Angeles, where she met Glen Ballard in early 1994. Ballard had previously written Michael Jackson's hit Man In The Mirror, produced Wilson Phillips' hit debut album, and worked with David Hasselhoff. Despite the duo's mainstream pop pedigree, they decided to pursue an edgier, alternative rock-oriented direction. The result was Jagged Little Pill, which was released on Maverick Records, Madonna's label.

On the strength of the single You Oughta Know, Jagged Little Pill gained attention upon its release in the summer of 1995. Soon, the single received heavy airplay from both alternative radio and MTV, sending the album into the Top Ten and multi-platinum status. The second and third singles from Jagged Little Pill, Hand in My Pocket and All I Really Want, kept the album in the Top Ten. In early 1996, she was nominated for six Grammys. Shortly after the nominations, Morissette released her fourth single, Ironic, which proved to be her biggest crossover success. Morissette won several Grammy awards in 1996, including Album of the Year and Song of the Year. Her much-anticipated follow-up, Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie, was released in the autumn of 1998. An Unplugged set appeared a year later, and in 2002 Morissette released Under Rug Swept. So-Called Chaos followed in 2004, and one year later she took Jagged Little Pill on the road as an acoustic tour, also released on CD.