With Fiona Apple's 'The Idler Wheel...' making a strong debut on the Billboard Album Charts at the No. 3 slot, we're taking a look back on the singer-songwriter's intensely creative career. Although four albums in 16 years isn't exactly prolific, all of them—from 1996's 'Tidal' to her recent June 19 release—are clear-cut classics. Given Fiona's peerless, fearless ability to express her thoughts in a way that is both candid and literary, it's not hard to be in awe of her talents. Above, Fiona Apple poses for a portrait in New York prior to the release of her debut.
18-Year-Old Singer-Songwriter in New York
When Fiona stepped on the scene in the mid-'90s, she was lumped in with the era's radio-friendly songstress boom. Now we know she's much too strange for that classification.
Soul Blaring, Midriff Baring
Fiona Apple performing in December of 1996.
Just a Couple of Girls Who've Had It Up to Here
Gwen Stefani and Fiona Apple at the 39th Annual Grammys.
Fashion Criminal at the 1997 VH1 Vogue Fashion Awards
That was a cell phone back in the '90s.
"This World Is Bullsh*t"
After winning the 1997 VMA for Best New Artist, Apple delivered an ill-received acceptance speech: "This world is bullsh*t, and you shouldn't model your life on what we think is cool, and what we're wearing and what we're saying." She's pictured here with magician David Blaine.
Joanna Newsom was taking notes.
Fiona Apple Teams with PETA
For Thanksgiving 1997, Fiona Apple teamed with PETA for a 1-888-VEG-FOOD hotline that attacked Butterball turkey and advocated vegetarian holiday alternatives. "There's no proper way to kill and cook these beautiful birds," Apple said in a recorded monologue. "Millions of people are learning that a vegetarian diet is the healthy choice for themselves, the earth and animals. And incidentally, they taste a lot better."
A Whiter Shade of Pale
Fiona Apple and Bob Dylan at the 40th Annual Grammy Awards in 1998.
Apple Stares, Madge Makes An Insane Face
Madonna arriving with Fiona Apple at the 70th Annual Academy Awards in 1998.
Tidal Wave of Hair
Fiona Apple during the 1999 KROQ Almost Acoustic X-Mas in Los Angeles.
All They Wanna Do is Win Some Grammys
Nine-time GRAMMY winner Sheryl Crow and one-time Grammy winner Fiona Apple at the 43rd Annual Grammy Awards in 2001.
Fiona Apple and Fashion Designer Richard Tyler
At the Mercedes-Benz Show in 2003.
Such Devoted Sisters
Fiona Apple and her sister Amber at the EMI post-Grammy party in 2004 at the Los Angeles County Museum.
Fiona Apple and Jon Brion at Hurricane Katrina Benefit
Jon Brion and Fiona Apple performing at the Benefit Concert for Katrina Relief in 2005. Brion produced the first version of Apple's 'Extraordinary Machine,' although most of the album was re-recorded with different producers, delaying its release by three years.
Promoting 'Extraordinary Machine'
Fiona Apple at Virgin Records in NYC in 2005.
Fiona at Tower Records in West Hollywood
In-store performance and album signing at Tower Records in West Hollywood, October 7, 2005.
Granny Smith Apple
Fiona Apple at the SF Weekly Theatre on November 25, 2005 in San Francisco.
Common, Fiona Apple and Chuck D in a Grammy Kickline
At The 48th Annual Grammy Awards in 2006.
Michael Caulfield Archive
Pounding the Piano
Fiona Apple at L.A.'s Greek Theater in 2006.
Channeling Edvard Munch
At the 2006 Vegoose Music Festival in Las Vegas.
Fiona Apple with Nickel Creek in 2007
Fiona Apple performing with Nickel Creek in Central Park on August 14, 2007.
Fiona Apple with Then-Boyfriend Jonathan Ames
Jonathan Ames and Fiona Apple attend the premiere of HBO's "Bored to Death" in 2009. The song "Jonathan" from 'The Idler Wheel...' is about a day they spent at Coney Island.
At the Venice Family Clinic Silver Circle 2011 Gala in Beverly Hills, CA.