Song Stories

“Last Kiss”

Pearl Jam | 1999

Teen tragedy songs were popular in the late 1950s and early 1960s. After Eddie Vedder heard this musical tale of a fatal wreck, written in 1961 and later recorded by J. Frank Wilson and the Cavaliers, he introduced the song to the band, who recorded it for $1,000 and offered it to fan club members as a Christmas gift. Later, the ballad--featuring Vedder's mournful vocals--became one of their biggest hits. "It just reaffirmed the fact that you don't have to think about it, and that a sound check record can do well," Vedder said.

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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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