Albums turning 20 in 1995
Later this month, Alanis Morissette will be releasing a special collector’s edition of her breakthrough album Jagged Little Pill to commemorate its 20th anniversary. The 4-CD box set will come with the original album remastered along with the acoustic version of the album that was released on its tenth anniversary, a live concert CD from the same year and a CD of unreleased songs that didn’t make the album, including the track Superstar Wonderful Weirdos (hear it here)
Along with Jagged Little Pill, here’s a list of some other key albums to come out in 1995 that will help make you feel just a little bit older. Which of these did you own?
Amanda Marshall pretty much dropped off the map after her Greatest Hits album came out in 2003 due to unresolved record label disputes. She doesn’t even have Twitter, though she does still perform occasionally. 20 years ago, her first album came out and became a staple on Canadian radio for the next two years with seven consecutive hits including Birmingham and Let It Rain, which still get played occasionally. This was one of the few releases by Canadian artists to sell over a million copies in Canada.
This album didn’t take off until over a year after its initial release when Who Will Save Your Soul became a hit. After that, two more tracks from it became even bigger for Jewel, although both in remixed versions that weren’t on this record. Even still, Pieces Of You became a blockbuster hit over the next few years, even with its raw recording and very minimal production.
Jewel just released the bookend to this album titled Picking Up The Pieces a few weeks ago, as a sort of answer to the inevitable Where Is She Now.
Mariah was the biggest pop star of the 90s and it all came to a peak for her fourth studio album Daydream, which contains the song that to this day is the longest running #1 ever, One Sweet Day. While that song luckily burnt itself out soon after its release, Daydream does have classics like Fantasy as well the delectable Always Be My Baby – easily her best song.
Like Jewel’s album, Tragic Kingdom didn’t gain in popularity much until the next year after Just A Girl and Spiderwebs became hits, but it was Don’t Speak that really sold the album, making it a best seller a year after its release. I got it for Christmas in 1996, the same year I had chocolate oranges for the first time. They will always remind me of each other because the liner notes of Tragic Kingdom is covered with photos of “Sun Pist Oranges”.
Not overly fond of Oasis but you can’t ignore the fact that songs from this album belong in a time capsule for the mid-90s. Wonderful, Don’t Look Back In Anger and Champagne Supernova are all 90s essentials, classics even, not to mention the impact this record had on Britrock and the general popularity of it, selling over 20 million copies around the world and consistently making all-time lists.
This album isn’t in the same league as all the others here but as a euro-dance album released during the height of europop in the 90s, it did quite well. On a personal note, it was one of my favourites as a pre-teen so it’ll always be a classic in my books. Don’t even say you don’t like Another Night or Run Away because that answer does not compute.
Before Shania became the biggest country star in pop music, she was a huge country star. The Woman In Me sold over 20 million copies, rare for any album, especially a country music one, and spawned 8 hits. Even people who never ventured into the world of country music knew Shania’s songs. (If You’re Not In It For Love) I’m Outta Here and Who’s Bed Have Your Boots Been Under were instant classics and helped put Shania, and Canadian music, on the international stage in the mid-90s.
This double-album seemed to be the definition of alternative rock the year it came out with songs like Bullet With Butterfly Wings and 1979 being constantly played on MuchMusic. I’d always been fond of the video for Tonight Tonight, which was inspired by the silent film A Trip to the Moon by Georges Méliès. It rightfully won six MTV VMAs.
Soundtracks were big in the 80s and 90s, but few had as big an impact or as solid a tracklisting as Waiting To Exhale. Most of the songs were written from a woman’s perspective by Babyface, the go-to songwriter and producer of R&B and pop in the 90s, who also produced this soundtrack. It had some of the biggest names in R&B like Whitney, Chaka Khan, Patti LaBelle and Aretha Franklin, not to mention classic hits by Brandy and Mary J. Blige’s epic Not Gon’ Cry.