Kelly Clarkson Reveals She Bought Her First Dictionary Because of Alanis Morissette

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Kelly Clarkson has Alanis Morissette to thank for her interest in words. On the Thursday (Oct. 19) episode of the American Idol alum’s eponymous talk show, she revealed that she purchased her first dictionary because of her love for the “You Oughta Know” singer’s album Jagged Little Pill.

Clarkson kick off the interview by gushing about Morissette’s songwriting capabilities, noting that the “Ironic” singer has a unique ability to contextualize universal experiences in her music. “You have this very amazing way of saying what we really want to say or we don’t know how to identify it, and ‘Hands Clean,’ that’s a really rough song,” she said. “Is that from childhood trauma and on?”

While Morissette did not confirm or deny whether the track is about her childhood experiences, she recalled the video treatment her record label at the time suggested, and how it didn’t match what she had in mind at all.

“I remember the record company having said, ‘Let’s do this video where it’s a karaoke and there’s kids and it’s joy.’ And I asked them, I said, ‘Have you heard the song?’ And they said, ‘Yeah, it’s great.’ I was like, ‘OK, so you haven’t heard the song,’” the seven-time Grammy winner explained. “It just felt like this incongruent kind of thing, but it’s a lovely way to present a song that otherwise might not have even been listened to, I think.”

Clarkson remarked that Morissette’s ability to bring “Webster Dictionary words” to her music fascinates the Idol alum. “I bought my first dictionary because of you,” Clarkson shared. “I was very young, and I was like, ‘What are these words? They mean something and I just need to look them up!’ Literally you are the reason why I owned a dictionary for the very first time.”

The “Since You’ve Been Gone” singer kicked off Thursday’s episode with a rousing rendition of Morissette’s “Smiling.” With the help of her backing band, she ripped through the track with ease, peppering his signature high notes and belt thoughout the song. “This is my first wave of my white flag/ This is the sound of me hitting bottom/ This, my surrender, if that’s what you call it/ In the anatomy of my crash,” she sang on the chorus.

Watch Clarkson’s interview with Morissette in the video above.

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