Tracy Chapman was among 1200 cyclists participating in this third edition of the AIDS/ Life Cycle, the 7-day event (from June 6 to June 12) during which participants bicycle from San Francisco to Los Angeles is about AIDS and raising money for critical HIV and AIDS services and education.
It is the only long distance cycling AIDS fundraiser in California produced by San Francisco AIDS Foundation and the HIV/AIDS services of the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center that benefit from the funds raised by the event.
Tracy Chapman participated in her name as an individual but performed few songs on the 4th evening at the camp for all the riders.
On Friday June 11, 2004 CBS Five interviewed Tracy about her participation to the ride: The AIDS LifeCycle reached Ventura County Today. The final destination is Dodger Stadium.Fifteen hundred cyclist and volunteers are biking five hundred and eighty five miles to raise money and awareness for HIV and AIDS.
CBS Five’s Dr. Kim Mulvihill is taking part in the ride. She asked fellow first time cyclist and grammy award winner Tracy Chapman if the ride was worth it.
Tracy Chapman: Oh yeah absolutely a great experience, even with the hills and the sore spots on various parts of my body i can’t talk about. Yeah, it’s great. I love this sense of community and there is so much heart here.
The fundraiser has raised five million dollars for local AIDS services.
- AIDS / Life Cycle
- Videos from the 3rd edition of AIDS / Life Cycle (on Day 4, you can see Tracy Chapman performing “Stand By Me”).
- S.F. AIDS Foundation
- L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center
RIDERS ARE TALKIN’BOUT TRACY CHAPMAN
LORRI L. JEAN, L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center (Day 4): Another person who got a standing ovation tonight was internationally renowned singer/songwriter Tracy Chapman. As a rider on this event, she has been out there pedaling with the best of them. Her celebrity status has not made her immune to the need for butt balm, the use of porta potties, Gatorade or any of the other exciting accoutrements of the ride. Nor has she expected special treatment. Instead, she has been enormously gracious to cyclists and roadies all along the route. Tonight, even after the LONG day of riding, when she probably would much rather have been sleeping to prepare for tomorrow, she agreed to perform. She talked about her experience as a cyclist, about the friends she has lost to AIDS, about the need to do what we can to fight this epidemic, and then she sang several songs, including Give Me One Reason, Talkin’Bout A Revolution, and Stand By Me, all to the tremendous delight of the crowd.
After Tracy finished singing, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a camp empty as fast as this one did. People headed directly for their tents, leaving only the volunteer crew and staff to continue with all the work that is necessary to support the cyclists tonight and tomorrow. After 4 days of cycling, spirits may be high but bodies are tired, be they young, old, or somewhere in between.
FERNANDO “ROMAN”, SF Cyclist #2221(Day 5): “So last night, we got one of the best surprises … Tracy Chapman, who is actually riding this year, gave a live concert for us. It was amazing … I wish there were more people like her making these journeys and contributions, as they do make a difference. She shared some words, and in her own gentle yet powerful way, made us all feel a part of what she was feeling, and the emotions that brought her to the ride. We were all overwhelmed and the soft melodies rang across the park. It was a good night.”
TOM KUNZE, LA Cyclist #6170 (Day 6): “Most of the morning was contemplative as I reviewed my list of all the special things from this week. I asked my fellow riders what made their experience this week, what one moment, what one thing that would stay with them after the ride. The list is here.
1. Rest stop 1 team saving a cow delivering a stillborn calf when the farmer and vet were not available.
2. Tracy Chapman riding, singing and sitting down with riders saying, “Hi, my name is Tracy, what’s your name?”
3. The chick with the megaphone hiding in the bushes on the various hills playing songs and dancing to get riders up the hills. I stopped today to meet her. Her name is Elaine.
GILBERT MIXON, LA Cyclist #6094 (Day 4): “…After dinner the entire camp was treated to a mini concert by Tracy Chapman, who is also riding this year. She provided not only great music, but also excellent commentary on why she is riding.”
PAUL GOLDIE, LA Cyclist #6211: Just wanted to thank Tracy for doing the Aidslifecycle3 Bike ride with us from San Fran to LA this past week. Tracy rode side by side with the other 1200 heros riding the almost 600 miles to help people with AIDS. After a day of hard riding Tracy found the strength to entertain us at camp, singing several songs to a very happy and grateful bunch of riders and crew members. Tracy’s being there showed the world that AIDS can touch anyone and everyone. Thank you Tracy for being there and giving the other riders the strength to climb the hills and ride for hours upon hours each day!!! Rider number 6211.