Interview #2: Alanis Morissette

Alanis Morissette helped define the nineties, a decade already awash in combat boots, tragically hip alternative musicians, and female empowerment. Her first album, Jagged Little Pill, sold over 30 million copies worlwide and helped her win four Grammys, including Album of the Year. Subsequently she released Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie, Under Rug Swept, Feast On Scraps, So-Called Chaos, and Flavors of Entanglement, among other things.

1. What I found refreshing was learning that you went to India, as many celebrities were doing at the time, in search of something - enlightenment, whatever - and yet you were disillusioned by what you found. Describe what that was and how you interpreted it.

2. You have referenced 'God,' 'Spirit,' and other ways of naming a higher power. How would you describe yourself religiously?

3. In my opinion, SFIJ is one of those albums that young people will discover decades from now and absolutely adore. With it being the follow-up to your massive hit of a debut, how do you think of SFIJ now, in retrospect? Did you accomplish what you set out to do with a follow-up?

4. My personal favorite album of yours is Feast on Scraps. (It's comprised of songs left off of Under Rug Swept) Not only is it some of your best work, period, but the songs are much more edgy and haunting than the album on which they didn't make it. Why did you feel compelled to keep them off the original?

5. In the same vein, Under Rug Swept is probably your most 'pop' album. Describe the decision-making process in selecting the songs that made the final cut; and did they accurately portray the kind of sound you wanted for a follow-up to SFIJ?

6. With an Alanis album, I can always expect the quiet, haunting songs as well as the hardcore, in-your-face dark stuff. What parts of your personality help to create each of those disparate sounds? Which type of song do you prefer more?

7. The paradox of the music industry is: stick with a tried-and-true formula and be criticized for not trying new things; try new things and be criticized for veering away from your fans. Have you felt that you personally experienced this in your career?

8. With your latest album, Flavors of Entanglement (which has gorgeous album art, by the way), you introduced a more synthesized production. What are your thoughts about how it turned out? Do you feel in some ways the synthesizer is better equipped to provide the sounds you hear in your head?

9. Where do you see yourself headed next?

10. Be honest, now - what exactly did you see in Dave Coullier?!


1 comment:

Rebel Mel said...

Heh. I like these interviews. I hope one day you can meet alanis and actually ask her these questions.

This post reminded me of my letter to dane cook. I wish he would read it and respond. Maybe one day.

I hate to admit it, but I like alanis, a lot. if you ever confronted me and asked me about it, I would probably deny it for the sole reason that she was nude in that video - I hated that video!

But she totally paved the way for a lot of artists. I personally enjoy the weird al parodies of her stuff better, but I can't say that I don't know every word to ironic.