1964-03-30

TRACY CHAPMAN, American singer, born; Although Chapman has never spoken publicly about her sexuality, PulitzerPrize-winning author Alice Walker discussed her love affair with Chapman in an interview with The Guardian on December 15th2006. She explained why they did not go public with their relationship at the time (the mid 1990s), and said “[the relationship] was delicious and lovely and wonderful and I totally enjoyed it and I was completely in love with her, but it was not anybody’s business but ours.”

After waiting to graduate college, she signed to Elektra Records, releasing Tracy Chapman (1988). The album was critically acclaimed, and she began touring and building a fanbase. Soon after she performed it at the televised Nelson Mandela 70th Birthday Tribute concert in June 1988, Chapman’s “Fast Car” began its rise on the US charts, eventually becoming a Top 10 pop hit on the Billboard Hot 100. “Talkin’ ’bout a Revolution,” the follow-up, charted at #75, and was followed by “Baby Can I Hold You,” which peaked at #48 The album sold well, going multi-platinum and winning three Grammys, including an honor for Chapman as Best New Artist. Later in 1988, Chapman was a featured performer on the worldwide Amnesty International Human Rights Now! Tour. Chapman often performs at and attends AIDS charity events such as AMFAR and AIDS/LifeCycle