1988 Live Wembley Performance of Fast Car from Tracy Chapman

Country singer Luke Combs recently released a cover of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car,” which quickly climbed the charts. While I’m excited that the song is getting traction with a new audience, it’s surprising that there are listeners who are unaware of Chapman’s original version. They are missing out on her connection to the song and the emotion she communicates during her performance. However, after her re-introduction at last night’s Grammys, Tracy Chapman’s talent is undeniable, and everyone knows who she is.

In 1988, during a celebration for Nelson Mandela at London’s Wembley Stadium, Tracy Chapman performed “Fast Car,” a brand-new, unreleased song. Amidst a lineup of various artists, Chapman delivered a successful performance and exited the stage. However, when Stevie Wonder’s team required extra time due to sound issues, Chapman returned to the stage and delivered one of her earliest significant performances of the iconic song. Watch the moving performance below:

There was an urgent need to fill the gap Stevie Wonder had left, and Tracy Chapman, who had already performed her act, agreed to appear again. The two appearances shot her to stardom, with two songs from her recently released first album, “Fast Car” and “Talkin’ ‘Bout a Revolution”. Before the concert, she had sold about 250,000 albums. In the following two weeks, she was said to have sold two million.

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