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Throwback Thursday: "Fast Car" by Tracy Chapman

Tracy Chapman

Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons

“Fast Car” as originally released in 1988 on Tracy Chapman’s self-titled album Tracy Chapman. The song is a beautiful ballad about love, suffering, and hope for a better life. In a 2010 radio interview, Tracy Chapman said the song represented the world she saw growing up working class in Cleveland, Ohio. Seemingly against all odds, “Fast Car” became a huge success. “A black folk singer with a nearly six-minute song containing more than 500 words…well, what were the chances?” (Tracy Chapman, “Fast Car” by Rick Moore, August 26, 2018, songwriter.com) Tracy Chapman got her first big break when Stevie Wonder fell ill and could not perform at Nelson Mandela’s 70th Birthday Tribute. Tracy Chapman was called in at the last minute and performed two of her songs from her album Tracy Chapman. One of the songs was “Fast Car,” and after her performance two million copies of the album sold. (The Story of… “Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman, September 26, 2018, smoothradio.com) The song topped the US charts at #6 and the UK charts at #5, and in 1989 “Fast Car” won the Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. (songfacts.com)