Tracy Chapman, who has been away from public performances for quite some time, is set to make a comeback. He will be sharing the stage with Luke Combs at the Grammys this Sunday night to perform a duet of “Fast Car”, as reported by Variety.
Luke Combs, who had a huge success with his cover of “Fast Car” last year, was already slated to perform at the show. The news of Chapman’s participation is quite unexpected, considering she has only performed on camera three times since her last tour ended in 2009. Despite the renewed popularity of “Fast Car” worldwide, she had so far resisted the call to capitalize on it.
Combs’ rendition of “Fast Car” was named the fifth biggest song of 2023 in the U.S. reported by Variety in their annual Hitmakers list published in late November, even surpassing big hits like Taylor Swift’s “Anti-Hero.” The song was a cross-genre hit for the country music star, leading Billboard’s Radio Songs chart for four weeks, reaching No. 1 on both the adult pop and country charts for two weeks each, and peaking at an impressive No. 6 on Top 40 radio and No. 2 on the Hot 100.
Tracy Chapman’s original “Fast Car” was released in 1988 and reached No. 6 on the Hot 100, which didn’t fully capture its widespread popularity at the time. The song made it to the top 5 in the U.K. twice, first in 1988 and then again in 2011, 23 years later.
While Chapman expressed her support for Combs’ cover of her song, she has largely remained out of the public eye since her song resurfaced in popularity last year. Combs’ team sought and received Chapman’s permission to release their version as a single, even though they could have legally done so without her consent. Combs stated last year that he hadn’t spoken directly with Chapman about the song, but her approval was all he needed. In addition to royalties, Chapman has also received recognition for her song, including a Song of the Year award from the Country Music Association.
In a statement shared on stage during the CMAs, where she won Song of the Year, Chapman said,“I’m sorry I couldn’t join you all tonight. It’s truly an honor for my song to be newly recognized after 35 years of its debut. Thank you to the CMAs and a special thanks to Luke and all of the fans of ‘Fast Car.’”