Biography

Tracy Chapman is an Afro-American rock-singer who restored wide audience’s attention to folk music and art of songwriters and singers back from the seventies. She was born in a poor family in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1964. Since her early childhood years, the girl was interested in music, learned to play guitar fast and started writing her own songs shortly after. Finishing her high school, Tracy earned scholarship to study at Tufts University, focused on research of anthropology and African cultures. As a student, she discovered Bob Dylan and became fond of folk music. Tracy gave her first performances at coffeehouses and clubs. Brian Koppelman, her fellow student, heard once her demo and recommended this musician to his father, Charles Koppelman, manager of SBK Publishing. This person helped Tracy sign a contract with the Elektra studio in 1987.

Tracy Chapman released her first album in 1988 to great critical acclaim. The singer took her chance to go on a tour as a supporting act for 10, 000 Maniacs. In a few months, she performed her own compositions at the concert dedicated to Nelson Mandela’s seventieth jubilee. This event was broadcast in a number of countries as Tracy was rewarded with storm of applause. This was followed by the rise of her single Fast Car up the charts. It eventually climbed the sixth position. This composition contributed to the increase in the sales of the albums, running multiplatinum by the end of the year. Early in the following year, this release won four Grammy Awards. Chapman wrote her music according to the patterns of the folk rock from the seventies, making it fresh and attractive by simple, yet catchy, tunes and sincere lyrics. Tracy’s following album, Crossroads, became available in 1989 and failed to go as far as the first one. It featured texts based on irksome political and social issues, which was too odd and hard to get for the fans who had expected something simpler. Although having earned critical acclaim, this released became a commercial flop.

Chapman took a long break before releasing Matters of the Heart (1992). It had mixed reviews and was a poor seller. Tracy seemed to have entered writer’s block and have no chance to produce anything better than the first effort. The next album, New Beginning (1995) was a ray of hope. It featured the bluesy Give Me One Reason, a smashing hit to prove that it was too early to disregard Tracy Chapman. This single became the highest selling in her discography and hit the third position on Billboard Hot 100. The subsequent album was released as late as in five years. Telling Stories hit the stores in the new millennium already and signified Tracy’s new approach with a shift from folk to rather rock-oriented sound. The following albums were released on a more regular basis. The title of the 2008 album, Our Bright Future, might imply Tracy’s declaration of her energy and whole set of new ideas.

Studio Albums

Tracy Chapman, Our Bright Future mp3Our Bright Future
Stylish, original and endlessly kind, Our Bright Future consisting of 11 amazingly heartfelt compositions about love and faith occupies a worthy position in Tracy Chapman's discography and stands out against the other pop works of the year
2008
  • Alt-Country
  • Folk Rock
  • Soft Rock
Tracy Chapman, Where You Live mp3Where You Live
Seventeen years on from her debut, Tracy Chapman is still unique. Chapman's new album boasts an airy, wide-open sound. Where You Live possesses an aural integrity and nuanced emotionalism rarely evidenced in contemporary pop music
2005
  • Folk Rock
  • Soft Rock
Tracy Chapman, Let It Rain mp3Let It Rain
2002
  • Folk Rock
  • Soft Rock
Tracy Chapman, Telling Stories mp3Telling Stories
2000
  • Folk Rock
  • Soft Rock
Tracy Chapman, New Beginning mp3New Beginning
1995
  • Blues
  • Folk Rock
  • Soft Rock
Tracy Chapman, Matters of the Heart mp3Matters of the Heart
1992
  • Folk Pop
  • Folk Rock
  • Soft Rock
Tracy Chapman, Crossroads mp3Crossroads
1989
  • Alt-Country
  • Folk Pop
Tracy Chapman, Tracy Chapman mp3Tracy Chapman
1988
  • Folk Pop
  • Folk Rock
  • Soul

Compilation albums

Tracy Chapman, Greatest Hits mp3Greatest Hits
2015
  • Folk Rock
  • Blue Eyed Soul