You Learn (3:59)

Cover of Jagged Little Pill

From Jagged Little Pill and 31 other releases

“You Learn” is a rock song written by Alanis Morissette and Glen Ballard, and produced by Ballard for Morissette’s third album Jagged Little Pill (1995).

In the song the first glimpse of Morissette’s insightful, new-age guru appears for the first time, speaking of the importance of poor decision making in life and explaining that every decision that people make will teach a valuable lesson. A line from “You Learn” is the source of the title of Jagged Little Pill. It refers not to drug use, but rather to the lessons of life being hard to accept (“Swallow it down, what a jagged little pill/ It feels so good swimming in your stomach”). The phrase is often mistaken for the title of the song, which Morissette has performed at nearly all her concerts. The arrangement of the song has changed repeatedly (particularly parts of the chorus melody), but the lyrics have remained the same.

In the United States the track was number one on Billboard’s Hot 100 Airplay chart for five weeks. After its radio airplay had started to decline, “You Learn” was released as a retail single and debuted and peaked at number six on the Billboard Hot 100. Because the CD single includes a live version of “You Oughta Know” from the 1996 Grammy Awards as an A-side, Billboard credited the chart position to “You Learn”/”You Oughta Know”. An acoustic version of the song from Morissette’s live album Alanis Unplugged (1999) was released as a single in some countries in 2000. Another acoustic version was recorded for the album Jagged Little Pill Acoustic (2005) and charted at sixty-six on the Tokio Hot 100 radio chart in Japan.

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  • DeathByPOGs

    THROWBACK! yeah I can't actually get through this song though.

    2 Jul 5:33pm Reply
  • Britch2

    what a jagged little pill [2]

    23 Apr 3:00am Reply
  • ShakiFanatic

    what a jagged little pill

    17 Apr 1:09pm Reply
  • RuhFernandes

    ...Senão a minha preferida <3

    29 Mar 12:21am Reply
  • wylloliveira

    lindaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa ♥

    8 Mar 9:11pm Reply
  • joshsaussey

    Another powerful song, from what is such a classic album that stands the test of time so far.

    31 Jan 6:11am Reply
  • LekuBauer

    Q 2014 seja muito melhor <3

    1 Jan 2:38am Reply
  • idoubledare

    her voice is perfect in this song :3

    8 Oct 2013 Reply
  • princeelaurent

    12 Aug 2013 Reply
  • vesituli

    Every time that first beat in the very beginning of this song plays, I'm in heaven.

    10 Jun 2013 Reply
  • tresfoufou

    You live, you learn.

    9 Jun 2013 Reply
  • niqart

    Most powerful lyrics. Fabulous ANTHEM song!

    24 Apr 2013 Reply
  • Rock_n_Robin

    Alanis doesn't have the prototypical beautiful voice, but it's distinctive and easy on the ears. This song...it's iconic...who doesn't like it? But sadly, some don't seem to learn.

    28 Mar 2013 Reply
  • userabc123

    one of the few I like by her

    18 Feb 2013 Reply
  • drownd_in_sound

    one of life's hardest and most important lessons

    11 Feb 2013 Reply
  • lovesoundd

    3 Feb 2013 Reply
  • miafan89

    gd song love it

    20 Dec 2012 Reply
  • bicknor

    What the lyrics say is that as one goes through life one lives and learns, assuming the person is reasonably intelligent. Hardly profound and no more than an obvious insight into psyche...............

    1 Dec 2012 Reply
  • flickothewrist

    Fabulous song from a remarkable album, incredible lyric content, amazing insight into the human psyche, a mark of genius

    23 Oct 2012 Reply
  • bruno__alves

    You live, you learn, You love, you learn, You cry, you learn, You lose, you learn, You bleed, you learn, You scream, you learn <3

    20 Oct 2012 Reply
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