I don’t think I’ve ever done a list of my favorite debut albums. I’m surprised, because that would be a fun list to compile given the many directions it could go.
I’m writing that down as an idea for a blog theme to come. Stay tuned.
One thing I know is Tracy Chapman’s self-titled 1988 release would be on that list. I never followed Chapman’s career after this record, but it remains a stunner. Its songs are eye-opening and tear-jerking, often at the same time.
As a lifelong David Letterman fan, I’m disappointed with myself for not paying closer attention to his show in the weeks leading up to his retirement.
I still have time to tune in, though. The official countdown began about a week ago with a prime time special that hasn’t aired as I’m writing this (and which I plan to watch). Guests such as Bill Murray, Oprah Winfrey, Ton Hanks, Steve Martin and Tina Fey are scheduled to hit the couch.
Best Albums of the 80s – #16
Tracy Chapman – Tracy Chapman (1988)
I might have neglected to list this album had I not been reminded of it by a random selection this past weekend. But revisiting it for that post, I once again succumbed to its earnest folk charm.
This album is half protest record and half romance. But, as the AllMusic review points out, even the love songs are laced with the sorrows of the lower class. Nearly 25 years ago, Chapman’s debut was the soundtrack of the 99%.
It’s hard to believe, but I’ve managed to post 1,379 songs without ever featuring a track by Tracy Chapman. You’d think she would have come up at some point.
True, I own only one Chapman album (her 1987 debut) but that record is a wonderful piece of work. And it’s an album of which I have very specific memories of exactly the sort I like to explore on this blog.
I guess she was just never high enough on my radar to break through. So thank you, Random iTunes Man, for the reminder.