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Tracy Chapman Import

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Audio CD, Import, October 25, 1990
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Tracy Chapman helped restore singer/songwriters to the spotlight in the '80s. The multi-platinum success of Chapman's eponymous 1988 debut was unexpected, and it had lasting impact. Although Chapman was working from the same confessional singer/songwriter foundation that had been popularized in the '70s, her songs were fresh and powerful, driven by simple melodies and affecting ... Read more in Amazon's Tracy Chapman Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Original Release Date: April 5, 1988
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Elektra Records
  • ASIN: B000002H5I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (192 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,386 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Talkin' Bout A Revolution
2. Fast Car
3. Across The Lines
4. Behind The Wall
5. Baby Can I Hold You
6. Mountains O' Things
7. She's Got Her Ticket
8. Why?
9. For My Lover
10. If Not Now...
11. For You

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Certified Multi-Platinum (6 times) by the RIAA. (11/01)


One of the most striking debut albums ever released, this disc instantly established Chapman as a musical force, and with good reason. Immediacy, integrity of purpose, and unqualified artistry are apparent in nearly every song. And while "Fast Cars" remains Chapman's best-known work, "Talkin' Bout a Revolution" is that rarest breed: a song which is both topical and timeless. Any exploration into Chapman's work should begin with this at times stunning effort; it's a disc of remarkable uniformity and clarity that Chapman has yet to improve on. --Wayne Pernu

Customer Reviews

It's one of my favorite albums of all time.
Her Lyrics are filled with great messages that really allow you to get to know her, it's impossible to listen to the tracks on this album and not feel something.
Tracy Chapman's voice is so beautiful, and soulful.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

70 of 76 people found the following review helpful By Wendy Kaplan on March 2, 2002
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
It's almost impossible to believe that this was a debut album, it is that good. There is nothing about it that would indicate a young, untried musician. On the contrary. Tracy's intensity, her poetry, her strong convictions, her musical soul are here for all the world to cherish.
Unlike her two later CDs, where Chapman softened a bit, these songs are pure, hard, protest, and what a joy it is to listen to them; what a joy to know that there is a pure, clear, voice out there that is challenging one's conscience. I haven't had the pleasure of such a listening experience since the early Joan Baez. And even though their voices are literally octives apart and completely different in tone and timbre, I rate Tracy Chapman right up there with Baez. Like her, Chapman has a voice that needs no accompaniment; it is an instrument unto itself. But unlike Baez, Chapman writes ALL her own music.
This CD is nothing less than a work of genius. I cannot say enough about it except to tell everyone I know to buy it and listen. You'll see for yourself!
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Ms Diva on May 27, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I genuinely don't think this disk could be any better. There is not a single song on here that isn't a work of art. I owned this on tape initially, but I had to get the CD because the tape was getting worn out, because I listened to it constantly - particulary to Baby Can I Hold You, Why, and Talking About A Revolution.
Chapman's voice is stunning, particularly on the a capella Behind The Wall, which never ceases to bring a chill down my spine. I always thought I didn't like folk music, but Chapman has made me reconsider that belief. Her lyrics are meaningful, and the collection of songs come together to form an overall feel, a mood, that is extremely moving and empowering. She exemplifies how music can bring people together and be an impetus to change, ala the greats like Bob Dylan. Make no mistake -- this is a political album and Chapman wears her left wing leanings like a badge of honour. If you can't tolerate her political views, you probably won't like the album as much as her core fans. That said, her voice and the music itself may make it possible for you to give it at least an intial listen. Chapman is more than a singer and musician - she's a poet, and her message is one that I believe we all need to heed.
I highly reccommend this album to everyone. Even if you don't agree with her politics, hopefully she'll make you think. At the very least, you'll be listening to one of the purest, best voices in modern folk/r&b/soul around today.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Tim Brough TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 7, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Tracy Chapman exploded onto the scene in 1988 with her debut single "Fast Cars." I was working in radio at the time, and recall when my Elektra rep told me she was going to send me something she knew I would love (she had a pretty good take on my personal taste). The CD single of "Fast Car" arrived, and it hit me like a sucker punch. The devastating lyric about social class and poverty entrapment was unlike anything on the radio at the time, and I knew it was something special. I am still proud to say that the station I worked for at the time was one of the very first to add the single to our playlist, and I had a platinum album of Tracy Chapman's debut in my office when the album hit number one.

"Tracy Chapman" is one of those fantastic moments in popular music; when an artist emerges fully formed with a debut that is prescient and fearless. Chapman had both a husky voice and a strong sense of melody, and yet the social voice she invested into her songs stormed over the average easy-listening pop. Her vocal assault of "Behind The Wall" is stark and haunting, echoing the violence of the song's lyric. "Talking About A Revolution" went straight for a lyrical jugular, there was no passive resistance here.

There was also a core of tenderness to be found here as well. "Baby Can I Hold You" was sentimental enough that Neil Diamond once recorded it. "If Not Now" is a plea to a lover to commit. And as a simple plea for peace amid the contradictions, "Why" is hard to beat. ("Why are the missiles called peace-keepers when they're aimed to kill?") Chapman also exudes confidence for the CD's 11 songs, enough that her notorious shyness is something you'd never guess at.

"Tracy Chapman" re-zoned the playing field in 1988 and won Chapman a best new artist Grammy.
Read more ›
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Robert G Yokoyama VINE VOICE on February 7, 2000
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Fast Car is a song about never giving up on your dreams, and that is why I never get tired of listening to it. Tracy Chapman writes powerful songs with timeless themes and that is what makes this CD so good I really loved her delivery on Talking Bout A Revolution. It is very inspiring song about the problem of unemployment. Baby Can I Hold You is about how people have difficulty saying how they feel about each other. Across The Lines is about the hope for racial equality for all people. Mountains O things is about trying to find happiness with the things you have. This CD is a must in your collection.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By "endofthegame" on November 7, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Many years ago Tracy Chapman's debut album captured a part of heart where it still resides to this day. Its introspective and vulnerable lyrics are timeless, rare and about all else, enduring. No matter how many times I listen to "Fast Car" it always leaves me hopeful and full of promise. It's a song about the limitless possibilities of life and urgent need to grasp opportunities before they escape us.
The tune "If Not Now, But When" is an incredibly poignant song about the desire to be loved and the disappointment that not receiving love brings. There is no one on this planet that cannot relate to that experience.
By all means listen to this recording. It's ironic mix of melancholy and beautifully textured acoustic rhythms will set your spirit to rest......and Tracy Chapman sings like an Angel.
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