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Song Stories

“Push It”

Salt-N-Pepa | 1987

Originating as a B side to their cover of the Stax classic “Tramp,” Cheryl “Salt” James, Sandi “Pepa” Denton and Dee Dee “DJ Spinderella” Roper came up with the goods on this career-making, Grammy-nominated platinum single about working it on the dancefloor. “Push It” has been sampled and spliced to death since it debuted in 1987, yet the original track is as fresh and fly as when SNP — among the few original women of hip-hop — debuted it. “Most men will never believe ‘Push It’ was never about sex,” said James. “And that’s why the record went to Number One,” said Denton. “Everybody thought it was about sex.”

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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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