01. Say Hallelujah
02. Mountains O’ Things
04. Behind The Wall
05. The Promise
06. For My Lover
07. Talk To You
08. Telling Stories
09. Another Sun
10. Fast Car
12. House Of The Rising Sun (The Animals cover)
14. Give Me One Reason
15. Talking ‘Bout A Revolution
16. Get Up, Stand Up (Bob Marley cover)
17. Baby Can I Hold You Tonight
Setlist submitted by MyMusicGems
VIDEO Extract of America
- MyMusicGems: Tracy Chapman in Stuttgart
My first Tracy Chapman concert, and what an awesome one! Tracy Chapman, Ladies and Gentlemen, officially ROCKS and I mean it literally. She rocked. Awesome – I’m still blown away and in awe; Mainly because she exceeded my expectations in 2 ways: As Tracy Chapman is a rather ‘quiet’ singer-songwriter, I expected the concert also to be a quite intimate, mellow one — the concert had e-guitars and some songs had an astonishing rock drive! Second, I thought of the Tracy Chapman fans to be also of the more mellow kind — they shouted, clapped hands and sang along many times which surprised me in a great way.
Last but not least I’m more than amazed by the personality of Tracy Chapman. And gosh, seeing this artist live is really something special…the way she expresses herself, you know.
The concert began right on time at 8:30pm with support act Ben Taylor. Mh, let’s say he’s a VERY mellow and soft singer-songwriter; armed only with his acoustic guitar he played for around 30 minutes. He was a very cool guy, he talked between the songs, joked around and congratulated us for the German victory over Argentina, plus he praised Tracy ;). Highlight for me was his cover of Macy Gray’s “I try”. After he left the stage, I’d say it took another 20 minutes until the lights finally dimmed again and Tracy and her band, consisting of drummer, keyboarder and bass/guitar player. The location (Liederhalle’s Beethoven-hall) was great, too btw. Not only that it was sold out, the acoustic and setting itself was just perfectly fitting for the concert. The setting of the stage was also very decent: behind a dark background (its colour should change to greenish- and reddish throughout the concert) there were 7 or 8 kind of *no clue how to call that*s…decent.
So Tracy got on stage with her band and for the next maybe 90 minutes I should totally be blown away, amazed and in awe (as already mentioned above hehe)
Acknowledged with applause Tracy took her place. The stage was faintly lighted so that you could basically only see Tracy’s contour. The concert began with an a capella intro of the song Say Hallelujah. The song was, like several other songs, played in a “clap your hands”-style, and the lyrics made it such a fine opener (“Throw your hands up high” felt like an order towards the audience).What I also loved throughout the concert was the apparent devotion Tracy puts into her facial expressions. For this opener she didn’t play an instrument but stood there, gesticulating slightly with her right hand as if
she wanted to emphasize what she was singing to us.
One of six (!) songs from her self-titled debut (released 1988) followed with Mountains o’ Things after she picked up her guitar. The transformation of the song(s) was excellent – the band did a phenomenal job and it was a great pleasure to listen and take in. After the song it was so sweet to get to see how cute Tracy is. I mean she smiles sooooo softly and has this humble and simply very nice way of behaving, yet at the same time you can immediately feel that she is also pretty self-conscious when she’s speaking. After the song she thanked us for coming, had some (funny!) little comment on the world cup and introduced the next song with the words “It’s a song I wrote years ago. Well, I don’t remember the exact date, but it was around a time when our president did some bad thing …well, today nothing much changed, uh ?” – Subcity was this next song and a first real big, big personal highlight. This live version was beyond being awesome, it was larger than life! I mean, as I said the acoustic was great, and then the lyrics, and how she sang it – especially the part with “Here in Subcity, life is hard” was so ‘giving-you-the-creeps’!
The next song was a true surprise of the touching kind. Now the band left the stage, Tracy put down her guitar, the light dimmed, and she started to sing Behind The Walls a capella. But she didn’t sing alone because everybody in the audience ‘helped’ her through the song. By that it gave the song a bit of an ambiguous meaning if you know what I mean… It gave me the creeps again, unbelievable feeling.
To be honest I cannot recall when exactly she sang The Promise, but I’m pretty sure she played it after “Behind The Walls”. However, this song knocked me down. It brought tears into my eyes for its unique beauty. Tracy still was basically alone on stage, light still was dimmed with only one spotlight being pointed at her. The keybord played sneaked onto the stage to support her Acoustic guitar play now. The soft guitar play with the slight strings, and her voice. It was so beautiful. The only bad thing about it was that she didn’t add “Save A Place For Me”…..
I said that Tracy rocked. Why did she rock ? Because she played the electric guitar in the next song, but not only that coz it was arranged in a quite rocky way! The song I’m talking about is For My Lover. It was great, and what emphasized it was that every time the chorus set in they played it like an extra start with their guitars. The audience also joined her singing
The first song of her most recent album “Where You Live” premiered now with Talk To You. It’s one of my faves from the album: the atmosphere and tone of it is one of a kind, of course accompanied by her great way of singing. Another time the live-version was more than great – the beginning, and then when the drums set it, and then when the lead guitar starts – aaaaawesome. Btw, I didn’t know Tracy Chapman was one of a great guitar player – LIVE!
Another highlight which in the middle part of it knocked me down again happened with Telling Stories. Kick ass song from my favourite album. Unfortunately this was the only song she played from it but well, this one was more than amazing – again. The play was good and all, but in the middle something happened that totally surprised me and, as already written, knocked me down because I was so overwhelmed. In the middle of the song there was a kind of instrumental bridge that was more than awesome [I wonder how many times I yet write this word ???]. I cannot describe it really…it was neat, it was great…awwwwww….loved it.
*Sigh*, you know…Tracy Chapman is one of a kind when it comes to songwriting. Her songs seem to be of plain meanings, easily to understand and easy to see through. But when you have a closer look you will find deep meaning(s) and intensity. I think that is why she is loved so much by her fans…straightforward songs and lyrics that yet have somewhat a ‘hidden-meaning’ or tone to it. Another Sun is such a song. Introduction of the band fllowed now.
The second part of the show began with the classic Fast Car where again everybody sang along with her. I just can repeat myself: the lyrics are so righ-into-your-heart that you feel like what she sings about is happening to you, that she’s singing about your experiences. AGAIN: the band was so gorgeous (about 2:15 mins into the song…)!
Her most recent single Change followed and was, if I recall correctly, prolly the most ‘normal’ one. Solid performance.
Yet another highlight of the surprising kind was her cover of the classic House Of The Rising Sun, originally by The Animals. I’m sure you all know the song, it has this gloomy and dark touch in its guitar line. However, this version was less dreary but as intense. I really, really, REALLY was more than pleased with Tracy’s entire performance again.
For the next song, two Tom Toms were placed on the right and left side of Tracy’s microphone. Tracy got a guitar, and then started drumming on the Tom Toms with her hands, the beat of America! What now followed was a gorgeous live performance that at the end had her playing a superbly feeling solo/reprise (sorta) of it. Not being very fond of the album version, this live perfo really had something ;).
A few seconds break and then one of her most known songs took place. No, not that certain revolution song but Give Me One Reason. I don’t know what people love so much about it, but it gained an extra big applause when the first chords of it started. However, I have to admit that it’s a cool and great song in a way coz once, yes once again her playing and singing makes it all just perfect! The audience really went a tiny littly bit crazy every time she began singing the lines with “Baby” and “But”. It was cool, but what for the third or fourth time surprised me in an aaaaamaaaaaaaaazing way was that at the end of the song, the band and her suddenly started to get right back to playing, and played an aaaaaaamaaaaaaaaaaaazing reprise-like version of it, a bit faster than the actual version, and sang the main lines over and over again. *Jesus*, that was so great I couldn’t believe my eyes and ears! Ok I might exagerrate, but it was really special to me.
Still being shocked for this great version, Tracy and co started to play the closing song, the ever gorgeous Talkin’ ’bout A Revolution. It was AWESOME (!) coz again everybody sang along with her, and the parts with “runrunrunrunrunrunruuuuun” where so cool, wow! (and the part with “tables” as well!) Oh, and we also whispered the “like a whisper” :)!
The last song was played and Tracy and co left the stage, but of course she was clapped back, so to speak ;). Get Up, Stand Up opened the encore. The feeling was good, let alone the atmosphere when Tracy animated us to throw up our hands, singingout loud “Don’t give up the fight!” with her.And then, of course, the grande finale: Baby Can I hold You. No words…everybody sang along, and you felt so embraced by the song and the 2000 voices around you, it was awesome.
… awesome awesome awesome.
Mountains O’ Things
Behind The Wall
For My Lover
Talk To You
House Of The Rising Sun (The Animals cover)
Give Me One Reason
Talking ‘Bout A Revolution
Get Up, Stand Up (Bob Marley cover)
Baby Can I Hold You Tonight