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Song Stories

“Hold On”

Wilson Phillips | 1990

This harmonizing trio may have had strong musical genes on their side — two were the daughters of Brian Wilson, the third had John and Michelle Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas as her parents — but their family connections also provided their share of heartbreak. Chynna Phillips, who wrote this song about difficulties she faced growing up, told Rolling Stone she had a lot of anger because her father was never there for her. "But there comes a time in your life when it keeps coming up and you have to face it."

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Song Stories

“You Oughta Know”

Alanis Morissette | 1995

This blunt, bitter breakup song -- famous for its line "Would she go down on you in a theater?" -- was long rumored to be about Alanis Morissette getting dumped by Full House actor Dave Coulier. But while she never confirmed it was about him (Coulier himself says it is, however), she insisted the song wasn't all about scorn. "By no means is this record just a sexual, angry record," she told Rolling Stone. "The song wasn't written for the sake of revenge. It was written for the sake of release. I'm actually a pretty rational, calm person."

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