Song Stories

“Satch Boogie”

Joe Satriani | 1987

While impressive how fast they could blast off a flurry of fast notes on their fretboard, the Eighties "shred movement" usually overlooked one tiny tidbit - the importance of songwriting. That's where Joe Satriani came in - utilizing single notes to play melodies that could have been supplied by a voice, or in the case of "Satch Boogie," blowing the roof off with some good old-fashioned blues-rock. As Satriani recounted to Guitar Player Magazine in 2007, "I started taking a ZZ Top/Van Halen-style-boogie, and injecting this warped two-handed tapping thing in the middle. But the devil on my shoulder urged me to do more, so I used pitch axis theory again. As a result, notes that make up the two-handed arpeggios in that section create some very odd tonalities that you wouldn't hear on a ZZ Top album." Before his solo career, Satch worked with Crowded House and Greg Kihn.

Song Stories Main Next

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."

More Song Stories entries »