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CNN PEOPLE IN THE NEWS

Profile of Carlos Santana, Alanis Morrisette

Aired August 23, 2003 - 11:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

ANNOUNCER: Next on PEOPLE IN THE NEWS, the legendary musician who is back at the top of the charts.
CARLOS SANTANA, MUSICIAN: My body is 56. My soul is 17 years old and very hungry to learn.

ANNOUNCER: He grew up on the streets of Tijuana.

SANTANA: I started with a hat on the floor, a guitar, a harmonica player and a conga.

ANNOUNCER: Played Woodstock with the stars of the '60s.

SANTANA: It's kind of scary. You're on mescaline or LSD, which I was.

ANNOUNCER: And rediscovered success with the stars of today. The spiritual and musical life of Carlos Santana.

Then, she's the voice of scorned women around the world.

GLEN BALLARD, MUSIC PRODUCER: Every word, every line, every phrase, would kind of fry her temper out of her soul.

ANNOUNCER: Before going platinum, she hit teen stardom in her native Canada. But don't make comparisons to a certain American pop star.

PETER CASTRO, MANAGING EDITOR, "PEOPLE" MAGAZINE: She would kill you if you ever compare her to Debbie Gibson.

ANNOUNCER: Her U.S. debut was one of the best selling albums of all time, but stardom came with a price.

ALANIS MORISSETTE, SINGER AND SONGWRITER: I didn't laugh for about two years.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The soul-searching journey of Alanis Morissette, their stories now on PEOPLE IN THE NEWS.

PAULA ZAHN, HOST: Hi. Welcome to PEOPLE IN THE NEWS. I'm Paula Zahn. Carlos Santana is a true rock and roll survivor. Distinct, colorful and hugely successful, Santana went from '70s super stardom to near obscurity in the 1980s. Now, after 30 years in and out of the spotlight, he is back from the brink and reconnecting with a whole new generation of fans.

Here's Kyra Phillips.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's music with a world beat. From a legend who flavors his rhythms with a heavy dose of spirituality.

SANTANA: If you listen to the inner voice inside your heart, if you follow your light, if you live your light, you're going to be rewarded.

PHILLIPS: Carlos Santana is at the pinnacle of a 40-yearlong career.

DAVID WILD, CONTRIBUTING EDITOR, "ROLLING STONE": This guy, you know, it just flows out of him and it's been blowing for decades and decades. You know he has a sort of fire in him, a musical fire.

PHILLIPS: A fire that has burned in the Mexican-born musician from his career-making performance at Woodstock. To his current come back, collaborating with some of today's hottest stars. But Santana's latest project reaches far beyond the pop charts.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Carlos and Deborah are giving the entire net proceeds of the U.S. Summer Santana Shaman Tour to launch ANSA Amandlar AIDS Foundation.

PHILLIPS: ANSA stands for Artists For A New South Africa. The group's focus has moved from fighting apartheid to fighting AIDS.

SANTANA: We invite you to join us in spreading a spiritual virus.

DESMOND TUTU, ARCHBISHOP: It's just a fantastic thing because it is going to save lives. It is, I hope, going to galvanize people.

PHILLIPS: But Carlos Santana wasn't always in a position to give his money away.

SANTANA: When we first landed in Tijuana from Autlan Jalisco in '55, we lived, not even a year, in a house with no running water, no electricity and so it smells the same thing in Tijuana or Hong Kong or India or Africa. Poverty smells the same.

PHILLIPS: Carlos was just a young boy when he moved to Tijuana with his parents and siblings.

SANTANA: But just because you're poor doesn't mean you have to be dirty. You know, my parents always made sure we were clean and that we had clean thoughts and stuff that like that.

PHILLIPS: It was here that he would first pick up a guitar; a major influence was his father, a popular mariachi violinist.

SANTANA: My father turned me on to European music, very sophisticated music. Later on, when we came to Tijuana he taught me traditional Mexican songs. But what I received in my DNA from my father is charisma. My father has a lot of charisma. My mother has a lot of conviction. So between charisma and conviction, viola, you know, you have me.

PHILLIPS: Santana's first gigs were hardly glamorous.

SANTANA: I started playing in the streets of La Cajara (ph) Revolution, which is like a Broadway, you know. Then later on, I graduated and went to the inside the strip joint.

WILD: Clearly, you know, in Tijuana he probably met some sordid characters. And what better preparation for rock and roll could you have?

PHILLIPS: But young Carlos met one character who left lasting scars. In a 2000 interview with "Rolling Stone," Santana admitted he was sexually abused by an American man. Almost every other day when he was 10 to 12 years old. It was a trauma that haunted him throughout his life.

DEBORAH SANTANA, WIFE: I think dealing with something that you have felt shame about is so important to healing. So for me, I saw him be able to not feel bad about himself anymore.

PHILLIPS: While he suffered in silence, Santana turned to music. As he listened to American radio stations on the border, Santana's traditional Mexican music began to merge with jazz, blues and rock.

WILD: You can't define his music and it wouldn't -- it's not worth doing. He's a guy who draws upon a whole world of music.

PHILLIPS: In the early '60s, Santana brought his distinctive sound to the United States. Moving to San Francisco where his father had been playing. The music scene was jumping. And Carlos found a hang out at the Fillmore West.

SANTANA: I probably shouldn't say this because my kids are going to see this. But I rarely showed up to school. You know, cut school a lot. I was always hanging out at the Fillmore West. Some people, they graduate from Stanford or Harvard, or you know -- my university was the Fillmore West. And I can say that I graduated with the highest of honors.

PHILLIPS: Standing in the audience, Santana would take in acts from Jimmy Hendrix to Jefferson Airplane. But it takes an experience at the day jobs at the Tick Tock Diner that pushed Carlos into music full-time.

SANTANA: Everything culminated to this time where the Grateful Dead pulled over in a couple of limousines to buy some hamburgers. They just did a gig and I was peeling to potatoes, bleaching floors, busing dishes and washing dishes, and I saw them you know. And something told me, if they can do this, I can do this. And so I quit that day. I quit washing dishes. I left my mom's house and I became a full-time hippy and a musician. That day was the beginning of the best part of my life because I discovered Carlos.

PHILLIPS: He formed his own band called the Santana Blues Band in 1966. Two years later, Santana would realize his dream of playing the Fillmore West. He was hired by the club's legendary promoter, Bill Graham.

WILD: Bill Graham loved sort of Latin music and jazz; and I think he was a very sophisticated cat.

But truthfully, the rock world of the late '60s was not that worldly. And here comes Santana bringing this stew of music. And somewhere along the line in between Tijuana and Fillmore West, I think he learned how to please a crowd.

PHILLIPS: When we come back, Santana pleases the crowd at Woodstock during the drug-induced haze of the 1960s.

SANTANA: The neck of my guitar, it looked like an electric snake.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We now return to PEOPLE IN THE NEWS.

PHILLIPS: Just a year after playing at San Francisco's Fillmore West, for the first time in 1968, Carlos and his band played a slightly larger venue in upstate New York.

SANTANA: We arrived like around 11:00 in the morning by helicopter because you couldn't drive in. It was disaster area. All the freeways were parking lots.

PHILLIPS: They were virtual unknowns sharing the stage at Woodstock with rock giants. It was all captured in this documentary: Woodstock, Three Days of Peace and Music.

WILD: It really was, I think, where Bill Graham, you know, showed a bit of genius. I think it was -- you know, there were a lot of big names at Woodstock. But I think very few people had the impact of one performance ever. But their performance at Woodstock really did introduce them to a generation.

PHILLIPS: It was a chance of a lifetime for Santana. The nervous musician performed "Sole Sacrifice" in a psychedelic haze.

SANTANA: When we arrived, to see a living organism of flesh and eyes and hair, teeth; it's literally an ocean of living people. It's kind of scary. Especially scary if you're on mescaline, iowaska or LSD, which I was. But at the same time, I kept hearing myself say to myself, please, God, keep me in time and in tune. I'll never do this again. Of course I lied.

But at that moment, I wanted -- I said God, please; help me just to stay in time and in tune because the neck of my guitar, it looked like an electric snake. It wouldn't stand still. First of all, you know, the neck is supposed to be like solid. But my guitar was moving all over the place.

So now when I see that video, I can see where I'm making such ugly faces. You know, because I'm kind of like trying to control this guitar and stand still and don't move around so much. And anyway, you know, I have great memories of Woodstock.

PHILLIPS: On stage and off, Santana immersed himself in the drug culture.

SANTANA: I got to see there was a lot of people like myself who were smoking pot. "Sacred sacrament" as Bob Marley would say and we opposed the Vietnam War. And it felt really encouraging that I wasn't alone, that a lot of people, kindred souls like myself, you know, we didn't have to hide in allies anymore to do the sacrament. Just like they drink wine at church every Sunday, you know, it's the same thing smoking a joint. It's no different, man.

PHILLIPS: For Carlos Santana, Woodstock was also a life changing, political lesson.

SANTANA: Well, I learned a lot from that experience about the generation that pulled people out of Vietnam and got Nixon out of power. You know, because let's face it, the hippies are the ones along with the Black Panthers who changed consciousness revolution in universities, Stanford and all, and Kent State. You know, it was the hippies.

PHILLIPS: Santana's performance at Woodstock solidified his place on the sound track of the '60s generation. His first two albums "Santana" in 1969 and "Abraxas" in 1970 went multi-platinum with classics such as "Evil Ways" and "Black Magic Woman."

Carlos had the sort of instant flowering with the early Santana band. That band, you know, those first few records, that's where all those classics came from. Albums like "Abraxas," that just -- they're still stunning and they're magnificent. And the albums after are really amazing and out there.

You know, I think he's one of those many people who at the end of '60s and early '70s started sort of taking music in every direction that interested them.

PHILLIPS: Like Santana's music, his life also began changing direction. In the mid-1970s, Santana disillusioned with the music scene after the drug related deaths of fellow musicians like Jimmy Hendrix and Janice Joplin.

He left the drug cultures, which you are for the teachings and meditations of eastern spiritual leaders, Sri Chinmoy. But the guru one of Santana's spiritual paths. SANTANA: We've accepted a lot of different teachings because I was raised a Christian. And we have moved beyond and through Buddhist thought and Native American thought. And we continue to grow and just try to touch more of who we are inside, what our essence is and why we're here. PHILLIPS: Though he's no longer a disciple of Sri Chinmoy, Carlos Santana continues his spiritual exploration.

SANTANA: Live your light and Jesus will be cheering for you. He's no bigger than us and we're not bigger than him. We embody the same light. And to me, if you live your light, Jesus will give you high five when you get to the other side. Sometimes take the time to ask yourself what religion is God?

PHILLIPS: Coming up, Santana's slide off the pop charts. And what propelled him back to the greatest commercial success of his career.

WILD: He had his first success in like '69. Here we are in, you know, 2003 still talking about him as a contemporary artist. I mean that doesn't happen.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Welcome back to PEOPLE IN THE NEWS.

PHILLIPS: Santana had found success at Woodstock and in his early releases. But as the 1970s became the 1980s, his career slowed.

WILD: After the initial success, there were years of ups and downs, but mainly sort of plateauing. There really were a couple of hits; I guess, at the end of the '70s, early '80s. And then after that it was really where things sort of slipped.

PHILLIPS: His 1987 solo effort, "Blues For Salvador" was on the Billboard Charts for just one week at No. 195. He was on his way to rock obscurity.

WILD: I mean there's virtually no artist for whom it doesn't slip. And he was fortunate enough and talented enough to be a major, live draw, always. But the remarkable thing is the second life. The second coming, it just doesn't happen.

PHILLIPS: And it didn't just happen. It took the return of long time music producer Clive Davis to marry Santana's guitar with the voices of today's most popular artists.

WILD: It's not surprising that Clive Davis would have him working with all these cool, young acts. The surprise is how brilliantly it works, because that's sort of thing traditionally has never worked. But I think between the two of them, they had such a great sense of the songs, and a sense of keeping Carlos' integrity through these collaborations that it worked.

PHILLIPS: Santana teamed up with eight artists to release "Supernatural" in 1999. It was an instant success. SANTANA: The CD before "Supernatural," we sold 500,000 copies worldwide. Five hundred copies; we were sold out in a week, you know. For I forget how many months we sold 25 times platinum and I think it's still going.

PHILLIPS: Santana used the same recipe for success in 2002 with his latest album "Shaman," working with artists from famed tenor Placido Domingo to alternative rockers, POD.

SANTANA: My body's 56; my soul is 17 years old and very hungry to learn. It's not a gimmick, gizmo, gadget or formula. Basically, it's the principle to compliment. Compliment whatever they put in front of me. Even to the point of silence. If you don't hear anything, don't play anything. But if you're prepared to compliment, you're going to be around for a while.

PHILLIPS: Santana's success with new artists also meant a new generation of fans. Songs like "Smooth," featuring Rob Thomas of Matchbox 20 and the "Game Of Love" featuring Michelle Branch became favorites of radio station play lists.

WILD: The kids that bought, you know, "Smooth" weren't giving extra credit for having been at Woodstock. I mean if anything, they're like, you know, he could have easily been seen as old and in the way. But instead, you know those songs just spoke to everybody.

PHILLIPS: With two hit records under his belt, Santana has hit the road again returning to his live roots.

SANTANA: Peace, peace, in the Middle East.

WILD: You will see everyone at a Santana show, which wasn't true, you know -- 15 years ago, I went to a Santana show when it really was a bunch of classic old rock fans. But you go to a Santana show now, you'll see, you know, the whole family. You know, you'll see kids to grandmas. And that's very appropriate for the music he makes.

PHILLIPS: It takes five trailer trucks and tons of speakers to make Santana's sound come alive. But it's people like drum tech Davey Crockett who make the experience possible. He's been on the road with Santana for 25 years.

DAVEY CROCKETT, DRUM TECH: Carlos is the kind of guy, you know, who makes a difference, you know, not just in his music but in his actions. He does stuff, you know, for the betterment of people, you know? There aren't many artists, you know, that take that much compassion and enjoy in doing what he does.

PHILLIPS: On this tour, that compassion translates into a donation to fight AIDS in South Africa.

KEVIN CHISHOLM, PRODUCER, SANTANA TOUR: We're going to take all the net proceeds from the tour which you know, should be hopefully around 2 to $2.5 million, and let that go right to South Africa. You know, so it can hopefully make an impact immediately. PHILLIPS: Touring is important, but Santana says his first priority is his three children, and Deborah, his wife of 30 years.

SANTANA: I would never envision myself with anyone other than Deborah. So for us, sacred is not Jerusalem or the Vatican or Stonehenge. Sacredness to us means the family.

PHILLIPS: He limits his touring to four or five weeks at a stretch, leaving plenty of time for his home life.

SANTANA: Yes, whatever rock star, take the garbage out. You know and I'm not what I do. This is what I do but this is not who I am. I'd rather be that other person who's like this with Deborah. You know, eye-to-eye contact.

SANTANA, D.: Any relationship is work, our relationship with ourselves, our relationship with a higher spirit, a higher power. And yet, it's been rewarding work. And I think we have a deep, lasting friendship, soul-mateness.

PHILLIPS: The family man is also a music icon. One who has come a long way from playing in the streets of Tijuana.

SANTANA: I started with a hat in the floor, a guitar, a harmonica player and a conga. We say 50 cents a song, mister, 50 cents a song, mister. I'm the same person. The hat just got really, really, really big.

PHILLIPS: The hat has gotten bigger thanks to Santana's distinct sound, a style still infused with his characteristically cosmic views.

SANTANA: It's easier for me not to get so caught up with guilt, shame, judgment, condemn and fear cage. Because that's exactly what it is, man. Guilt, shame, judgment, condemn and fear, get rid of that skin, man. That's an old skin.

The new skin is beauty, elegance excellence, grace, dignity. I salute you and invite you to discover your own new skin. Peace.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: With his U.S. tour now complete, Santana and his wife Deborah just this Thursday donated $2.5 million in proceeds to fight AIDS in South Africa.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When PEOPLE IN THE NEWS continues, she was queen of pop in Canada but her life and her music would take a dramatic turn.

MORISSETTE: And there was a part of me that was like sick of walking on eggshells and being perfect.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How Alanis Morissette found her voice and a new audience, just ahead.

(NEWSBREAK) ZAHN: Welcome back to PEOPLE IN THE NEWS.

Alanis Morissette made her name as rock's angry, young woman with her unprecedented debut album "Jagged Little Pill." But there's a lot more to Alanis than angst and heartbreak. It's been quite a journey to teen pop star; to the soul-searching songwriter she is today.

Here again is Kyra Phillips.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PHILLIPS: When she exploded on the music scene in 1995, Alanis Morissette was dubbed a prophet, the voice of a generation. Her "Jagged Little Pill," anything but hard to swallow.

GUY OSEARY, CEO, MAVERICK RECORDS: I didn't grow up on Carole King but to me, this was mine; "Jagged Little Pill."

PHILLIPS: Generation X couldn't agree more. Taking ownership in the blisteringly honest, sometimes X-rated album to the tune of 30 million sales. At the age of just 21, Alanis Morissette had the biggest selling female debut of all time.

MORISSETTE: Very overwhelming. Very exciting. Hugely defining. Literally, every two seconds I was being given an opportunity to really define who I was. And I wasn't entirely sure who I was; so, therein lay some of the struggle during those years.

PHILLIPS: "Jagged Little Pill's" ride would have its repercussions: exhaustion, withdrawal, and a less than stellar follow up.

CASTRO: You know, it was almost a curse because it was so successful that her next album in comparison was a complete flop.

PHILLIPS: And now she's back. Last year's "Under Rug Swept," and the single, "Hands Clean," topped the charts in 15 countries: Eleven tracks, written and produced entirely on her own.

WILD: "Under Rug Swept," it says that she's here for good; that she's going to be an artist, who's not just some sort of kid phenomenon, but that she's a singer, songwriter worth following through her adulthood.

PHILLIPS: An adulthood that has run the gambit from teen pop star to angst-ridden superstar.

Alanis Nadine Morissette was born on June 1, 1974, in Ottawa, Canada, three years after brother, Chad, and just 12 minutes after her twin Wade.

MORISSETTE: I grew up in a very masculine environment. So I was around a lot of men, my brothers and their friends. There was just a lot of guys around.

PHILLIPS: Georgia and Alan Morissette were teachers, and raised the three children in a seemingly idyllic, Canadian home.

MORISSETTE: Somewhat patriarchal. Very communicative. We didn't really watch television. Had to read half an hour a day, and we were only allowed to watch half an hour's worth of television.

PHILLIPS: But movies were allowed. By four, Alanis developed an obsession with the 1978 film "Grease." Two years later, she took up the piano.

MORISSETTE: I started playing piano when I was 6. And I knew that wanted to be involved in that form of expression, whether it was through music, or acting, or dancing, or painting, or writing. You know, I was always writing all the time.

PHILLIPS: Opportunity came in the form of a local folk singer, Lindsey Morgan; a friend of the family who made a living making music.

MORISSETTE: And I used to peak my head in through the emergency exit door, and just watch them, because obviously, I wasn't allowed in.

LINSEY MORGAN, FRIEND: So, the twins stood there. And especially to this day, I can still see Alanis standing there. I can see her eyes.

MORISSETTE: So I thought, OK, so you can love what you do. This is exciting. So, I just started writing, and didn't think it was unusual or odd at all.

PHILLIPS: Two years later in 1984, an audiocassette, this audiocassette, landed in Morgan's mailbox. On the tape, the rough beginnings of a song.

MORGAN: There was a line that came out, "Fate Stay With Me." I remember thinking; this is not just a little girl singing words. There's something there. It was unstructured. It was like words after another. But it was there. I talked to Alanis and I said, write some more.

PHILLIPS: Months later, Morgan was shocked by his protege's progress.

MORGAN: And she came down with her book, this notebook. And she hesitated. And she said, you promise you won't laugh? And I remember saying, Alanis, I'm not going to laugh.

MORISSETTE: One, two, three. Your father ain't man in the right place. Once in a while you meet him face to face...

MORGAN: I remember sitting there and I remember feeling the hair come up on the back of my neck. And she just went right through the song. I knew right then that there was something incredible here.

PHILLIPS: Her first big break came in the spring of 1985. Ten- year-old Alanis landed a role on the Canadian children's show, "You Can't Do That On Television." MORISSETTE: Because one thing I know is how to get attention at a party.

PHILLIPS: Using money earned from the show, Alanis and 42-year- old Morgan formed a label. Her first single, a recorded mastered version of the song left in his mailbox.

MORISSETTE: I think we printed up 2,000 copies of it, and pretty much gave all of them away. I think I sold three of them.

PHILLIPS: Although the single received little airplay, it did provide exposure. And at 13, Alanis took home the top prize at a local TV station talent search. But finally, in 1988 fate stepped in. The single "Too Hot" debuted in spring of 1991. Her debut album "Alanis" quickly went Platinum. There were tours and sexy videos like "Feel Your Love."

Coming up, from pop tart to queen of angst. Alanis Morissette is radically transformed by a "Jagged Little Pill." It's an about face that many people will question.

WILD: Anytime you sell that many records, you're going to have naysayers. And from the beginning there were people who thought she's a fraud.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now back to PEOPLE IN THE NEWS.

PHILLIPS: With big hair, shoulder pads, and hits like "Feel Your Love," by 1991, Alanis Morissette was Canada's queen of pop. But with that label came a nickname she despised.

CASTRO: She would kill you if you ever compared her to Debbie Gibson.

WILD: And I think she came out the other side of it, wanting to be real, wanting to be herself, not some sort of Canadian Debbie Gibson.

PHILLIPS: Her second album, "Now Is The Time" hit the stores in October of 1992. Audiences were in for a surprise. With ballads like no apologies, the album was less glitz and much more thoughtful. The result: a flop.

MORISSETTE: I knew that I wouldn't stop in terms of looking for someone to collaborate with until I felt like I was being myself, whatever that was.

PHILLIPS: The wait wouldn't be long. In the winter of 1994, she headed to Los Angeles. There, she was introduced to producer, Glen Ballard.

BALLARD: We were laughing and having a cup of tea, within five minutes. And then, ten minutes later, kind of diving into a creative no man's land, really. MORISSETTE: I thought, wow, here's someone I can delve into some subject matters that may offend or trigger or bother some other collaborators. Glen was embracing it. And he was saying, keep on, let's do it.

PHILLIPS: And with that creative pairing, barriers collapsed. Hidden anger and frustration from the past poured out. And the music flowed freely.

MORISSETTE: It took a minute or two for me to come out of my shell. And then once I did, I thought, OK. This is -- this is who I am.

BALLARD: We were in the middle of writing another song. And for whatever reason, I think we got bored or frustrated with a particular passage. And I just went to an E -- and then resolved it. And she said, sometimes. Then I went up to an F Sharp Minor 9. It's never quite enough.

MORISSETTE: There's a part of me that's like I'm sick of walking on eggshells and being perfect.

BALLARD: Perfect. And then you're in my life. And so she jumps the melody up a whole step there, which is really brilliant.

MORISSETTE: And it was still just this inner conflict of, you know, wanting to be a people pleasing, perfect girl.

BALLARD: Don't forget to win first place. It was like, OK. I don't know what's going on here but this is great. I mean because she was coming up with it on the spot.

MORISSETTE: And part of me that just wanted to be authentic and raw. You know? Not -- not lie.

BALLARD: And that whole overwhelming sense of childhood sort of pulling on you, I think she encapsulated in four bars. So, it was a beautiful moment.

PHILLIPS: In the coming weeks the album seemed to write itself; locking themselves in the studio, 12 songs emerged. In some cases, a song a day. And when "Jagged Little Pill" was released in June of 1995, it immediately caused a stir.

KEVIN SMITH, FRIEND: Anytime somebody mentioned oral sex in a movie, their ears prick up and listen. No pun intended. But who is this? Who the hell -- the heck is this chick?

PHILLIPS: The song was "You Ought To Know," taken directly from Alanis' journal, a scathing ode to an ex-boyfriend.

MORISSETTE: I was worried about some of the subject matter in it. And I remember Glen turning to me and saying, is this how you feel? And I said, yes. He said, well then don't change a damn thing.

PHILLIPS: But there were detractors, especially, when the Canadian, pop tart past was discovered by the press.

JOHN ALEXANDER, FMR. MCA RECORDING A & R EXE., CANADA: I was blindsided by someone from the "L.A. Times." He started asking questions like, how come those first two albums that you made aren't available anymore, and are you embarrassed by them?

WILD: People assumed that Glen Ballard had created this persona for her, and created this music for her.

BALLARD: The idea that I did anything other than just empower what was already there, ignores the fact that she's just an enormously talented singer, gifted lyricist, powerful personality, and a very spiritual and strong person.

PHILLIPS: Naysayers aside, there was no denying the momentum. Four Grammy's later, "Jagged Little Pill," was on the way to selling 30 million copies, the biggest female artist debut of all time.

MORISSETTE: And it was so scary and so great and I was humbled and blown away. It was just a catapulting into who are you-ness? Who are you in the face of this mayhem?

PHILLIPS: Coming up, after two years on the road, the enormity of "Jagged Little Pill" blindsides Alanis, forcing her to take a break.

WILD: The rest of the world around her was going crazy: People were expecting her to save a generation. And that was just not going to happen.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On this week's BREAKING BIG, the men behind Clodhooper mania. They are the Canadian version of Ben and Jerry. But instead of ice cream, they manufacture clodhoppers: graham wafer fudge clusters. Chris Emery and Larry Finnson founded Craves Candy Company in 1996. JULIE SLOAN, FSB WRITER: Chris and Larry come across immediately as so full of energy. You think that they've eaten many bags of their own candy. The two of them love what they're doing.

Chris and Larry have been best friends since 10 grade and they were always looking for a way to get into business together. Chris' grandmother had a candy recipe that she would make for all her grandchildren. And Larry found that when he had this candy in this apartment, all his roommates would steal it. And I just thought, you know, maybe we have something here.

Clodhoppers are currently sold only in Canada. But with their caution, "highly addictive," slogan, Chris and Larry hope to sweeten the teeth of Americans soon.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Welcome back to PEOPLE IN THE NEWS.

PHILLIPS: By the winter of 1996, the world, it seemed, had fallen head over feet for 22-year-old Alanis Morissette. The "Jagged Little Pill" tour had taken her around the world twice. And with 30 million albums sold, six top 40 hits, and four Grammies, the Canadian transplant was being called the most successful new female artist in pop music history.

WILD: She sold 30 million records with a very intense, psychological artful, non-pandering, piece of work. That's really unprecedented.

PHILLIPS: But with newfound icon status bearing upon her, pressure was building. Fame, it seems, was not everything she thought it would be.

MORISSETTE: I didn't laugh for about two years. One has to almost experience it to be able to truly see that it doesn't offer what it's touted as being able to offer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Alanis.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Morissette.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Alanis.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Morissette.

PHILLIPS: The wild ride had to stop and as the "Jagged Little Pill" juggernaut approached the second year with no sign of slowing down, a decision was made. The tour would end. And on December 14, 1996, a visibly drained Alanis said good-bye to her fans, hugged her band mates, and set off to find herself.

In the coming months, friends and family were met by an altogether different Alanis: closed off and distant.

ALEXANDER: I think she started to maybe isolate herself a little bit from some of the people she was very close to. I could sense that something was amiss. Something was wrong.

PHILLIPS: Adding to the pressure, the industry was pushing for another album. Paralyzed by expectations, those closest to her say, she nearly walked away.

MORGAN: We went to see her down in Los Angeles. I remember her saying, I thought of walking away from it many times. It's that brutal.

PHILLIPS: With the help of yoga and eastern spirituality, Alanis turned inward. And following a life-altering trek to India in January of 1998, she began to write again. When she returned to Glen Ballard's studio months later, the angst was behind her and a peaceful Alanis Morissette walked in.

BALLARD: When she walked in the door that day, we went right to it. Within an hour, there it was. It was the song that had the easiest time being created. And that certainly was, I think, a gift to me from her, through India. PHILLIPS: The album "Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie" was released on November 3,1 998. Like "Jagged Little Pill" autobiographical but something was different. The anger was gone and fans didn't know what to think.

WILD: On "Jagged Little Pill," it was about everybody in the world related to this record. On the second record, her experiences were things that no one else could relate to.

PHILLIPS: The 17-track album sold 10 million copies; just one third of what "Jagged" had taken in.

CASTRO: Immediately, they talked about the sophomore jinx, which was rubbish. You know, if any other people had that album out at the time, they would have been deliriously happy.

PHILLIPS: By the spring of 2002, Alanis, the singer-songwriter returned. This time, however, there was a hitch. No collaborations, no producers. Her third album was all her own and aptly titled "Under Rug Swept. "

WILD: A lot of people were expecting her to fall on her face and come up with something inferior. I think it's one of the best things she's ever done.

PHILLIPS: Rocketing to No. 1 the first week in release, it's debut single "Hands Clean," immediately sparked controversy.

CASTRO: Beginning at age 14, she started to date a much, older man who she hasn't named and it bothered her for years. It is really a no holds barred song. The lyrics are pretty intense and they are pretty incriminating.

MORISSETTE: It's a song about a relationship that I was not emotionally prepared to kind of deal with at the time. So I wanted to speak the truth about it, without seeking revenge of any sort, but seeking a liberation that comes from my speaking the truth.

PHILLIPS: It seems honesty will always at the core of Alanis Morissette, learning through the music, just as audiences can continue to live by the words. And although "Under Rug Swept" sales at 3 million to date, is nowhere near 30 million, by all indications, her story is far from over. And truth continues to set her free.

BALLARD: Alanis has a lot to say. Her voice is clearly one of the great instruments for expressing just about anything that she may be thinking about.

WILD: This is a woman who has a story she wants to tell. And I think she'll spend a lifetime telling the story.

MORISSETTE: I'll be writing songs till I die. There's just no question.

(END VIDEOTAPE) ZAHN: In addition to working on a new album, Alanis has just lent her voice to the sound track of a movie about the legendary Cole Porter.

That's it for this edition of PEOPLE IN THE NEWS. Coming up next week, the royals, on the anniversary of their mother's death: a look at William and Harry.

I'm Paula Zahn. Thanks so much for joining us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For more on the people and personalities shaping our world and how they're being shaped themselves, pick up a copy of "People" magazine this week.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com




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