Tracy Chapman was signed by Elektra in 1987, released her “Debut Album” in 1988 and became internationally famous seemingly overnight.
Before Chapman had this platform for her art however, the Coffee houses of Massachusetts including: Night Stage, Nameless Coffee House, Me and Thee, Club Passim as well as Women’s events and festivals provided a more humble stage.
No matter what the size of the audience, Chapman’s simple yet truly compelling craftsmanship leaves no room for indifference. Though it can be hard to understand it if you haven’t seen it for yourself, ask anyone lucky enough to have attended a show and note the passion in their recounts.
To help us travel back in time to this important chapter in Chapman’s career, we have unearthed some very rare live footage of Tracy performing “For My Lover” at the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival. Have a watch you can see that everything was already there at only 22: the talent, the power, the intensity and the purity.
The Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival dusted off a photo from their archives and posted it on Facebook a while ago. Here we can see examples those impassioned reviews and testimonies from those who had attended the concert. Even before the fame, Chapman was already creating unforgettable memories.