Telling Stories

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For the album by The Charlatans, see Tellin' Stories.
Telling Stories
A blurred photograph of a sign reading "TELLING STORIES"
Studio album by Tracy Chapman
Released February 14, 2000 (2000-02-14)[1]
Genre Adult Contemporary, Folk
Length 42:09
Label Elektra
Producer Tracy Chapman, David Kershenbaum
Tracy Chapman chronology
New Beginning
Telling Stories
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars [2]
Robert Christgau (dud) [3]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars [4]

Telling Stories is the fifth album by American singer/songwriter Tracy Chapman, released in 2000 (see 2000 in music). It was her first album in over four years, and her first since Crossroads to be produced or co-produced by David Kershenbaum. A special 2CD tour edition of this album was also released in May 2000, supporting the tour going on at the time. The album is composed of contemporary rock songs in the first half, and folk songs in the second half. The song "Unsung Psalm" was originally written for her previous album, New Beginning, but it didn't make it onto the album.

The record marked a return to shorter songs for Tracy, seeing as on New Beginning all of them had been very long.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Tracy Chapman.

No. Title Length
1. "Telling Stories"   3:57
2. "Less Than Strangers"   3:19
3. "Speak the Word"   4:12
4. "It's OK"   4:00
5. "Wedding Song"   4:36
6. "Unsung Psalm"   4:19
7. "Nothing Yet"   3:21
8. "Paper and Ink"   4:52
9. "Devotion"   2:48
10. "The Only One"   3:08
11. "First Try"   3:31
Tour Edition Bonus CD
No. Title Length
1. "Three Little Birds" (Live) 3:27
2. "House of the Rising Sun" (Live) 2:02
3. "Mountains O' Things" (Live) 5:06
4. "Behind the Wall" (Live) 2:09
5. "Baby Can I Hold You"   3:13


Additional musicians
Technical personnel
  • Duane Baron – engineering, mixing
  • Tim Hailand – artwork
  • Jeri Heiden – design
  • John Heiden – design
  • Renata Kanclerz – production coordination
  • David Kershenbaum – mixing, production
  • Martie Kolbl – production coordination
  • Curt Kroeger – assistant engineering
  • Iki Levy – drum programming
  • Bob Ludwig – mastering
  • Herb Ritts – portraits
  • Roger Sommers – assistant engineering


Chart (2000) Peak
The Billboard 200 33[citation needed]
Billboard Top Internet Albums 5[citation needed]
Swedish Albums Chart 16[citation needed]
Year Single Chart Position
2000 "Telling Stories" Billboard Adult Top 40 8[citation needed]
Billboard Bubbling Under The Hot 100 8[citation needed]


  1. ^ "Tracy Chapman – Telling Stories (Album)". Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  2. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. Telling Stories at AllMusic
  3. ^ "Robert Christgau review". Retrieved 2012-02-03. 
  4. ^ Rolling Stone review[dead link]