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More Than A Fast Car: Tracy Chapman on The Friday Ride Home

Tracy Chapman
Kevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
Tracy Chapman

Today's Friday Ride Home focused on the one and only Tracy Chapman who recently thrilled and delighted fans when she made a rare public appearance at this year's Grammy Awards. She performed her 1988 hit "Fast Car" with Luke Combs which originally appeared on her debut album and helped make her a household name. Country star Luke Combs recorded the song in 2023 and it went to number 1 on the Billboard Country charts. The song earned Chapman Song of the Year at the recent CMA's, making her the first black artist to ever receive that award. Thanks to Luke's version, a whole new generation is getting to know Tracy Chapman, too.

For many of us who grew up with her music, it was a very special moment to see her again, performing a song with so much nostalgia attached to it. It was like seeing an old friend you haven't seen in years but still love dearly. And yes, I cried a little, simply moved by the beauty of her voice, her guitar playing, her superb songwriting, and the memories seeing her evoked.

And who knows when we'll see her again? Her last album came out in 2008 with very few public appearances. But even with just a handful of albums in her catalog, there's no denying she's been a hugely successful and impactful artist, and judging by the overwhelming response on social media and elsewhere about her appearance on The Grammys, a living legend. I hope you enjoy this snapshot of Tracy Chapman's music and dig deeper beyond "Fast Car" although I never tire of that song!

Laura is the afternoon host from 3-6 pm weekdays. Email Laura at lshine@lpm.org