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You Were Meant For Me by Jewel
Album: Pieces Of YouReleased: 1995Charted:
Jewel wrote this song with Steve Poltz from The Rugburns, who also appeared in the video with Jewel - they were a couple at the time. At a 2007 concert in Sydney, Poltz explained that he wrote the song with Jewel while in Mexico, and at one point the lyrics flew out of the car window when they were driving. He went back to get it, but almost abandoned it. Poltz would go on to start the "Frasier Fair" in 1998, which was a male response to the Lilith Fair.
This was Jewel's second single, providing a follow up to her debut hit "Who Will Save Your Soul?
" and quickly taking her out of one-hit-wonder consideration.
This was the most played song on US radio in 1996.
Two music videos were made. The original was directed by Sean Penn in 1996 and featured the less popular "Juan Patino Radio Mix."
Lawrence Carroll directed a second video for the hit "radio version," which features Jewel and Steve Poltz as lovers struggling to be together. Jewel has said the "shedding" of her clothes in the video symbolizes "being free with a lover or friend. Being stripped and surrender yourself to them."
The Lawrence Carroll-directed video won the award for Best Female Video at the 1997 MTV Video Music Awards.
Poltz told Entertainment Weekly that this song was "written on a drug bust in Mexico." He and Jewel met a couple of cops who agreed to take them whale-watching until duty called. "We were way out on the water and they got a call and said, 'We don't have time to drop you off. We're trying to catch these drug smugglers, and there might be a shoot-out.' They asked us if we wanted AK-47s, so we had guns, and they caught the guys. We helped them load the pot back onto the boat and they took us back to shore." Luckily, no shots were fired.
Jewel recorded this song three times before she found a version that made her and her record label happy. She told Billboard of the original version: "When I got my album in my hands for the first time, I sat down crying because I hated the way I sang the song so much. The choruses really bothered me. To hear that it was going to be the single, it was like, no, that's my worst nightmare come true I was appalled." After a lukewarm remix that spawned the Sean Penn-directed video, Jewel still wasn't satisfied and insisted on recording the third and final version, which became a hit.
This was used on The Office in the 2007 episode "Phyllis' Wedding."
Jewel performed this, along with "Who Will Save Your Soul?
," on a 1997 episode of Saturday Night Live
, hosted by actor John Goodman.
At the time, this was the biggest-selling single in the history of Atlantic Records, and Jewel became the label's first artist to grace the cover of TIME magazine (July 21, 1997).
The Pistol Annies, a country music trio featuring Miranda Lambert, Ashley Monroe, and Angaleena Presley, joined Jewel on this track for her 2013 Greatest Hits album.
Jewel wrote the song during the time she was homeless and living in her car. During that period she started having panic attacks and anxiety, and came up with her own way of coping, using mindfulness exercises to retrain her brain. In an interview with ABC radio, she said the line, "Dreams last for so long even after you're gone" is about "the love of fantasy versus the actual reality."