Fast Car

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For other uses, see Fast Car (disambiguation).
"Fast Car"
Single by Tracy Chapman
from the album Tracy Chapman
B-side "For You"
Released April 1, 1988
Format
Recorded 1987
Genre
Length
Label Elektra
Writer(s) Tracy Chapman
Producer(s) David Kershenbaum
Tracy Chapman singles chronology
"Fast Car"
(1988)
"Talkin' 'bout a Revolution"
(1988)
Music sample

"Fast Car" is a song by American singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman. It was released in April 1988 as the lead single from her self-titled debut album. Her appearance on the Nelson Mandela 70th Birthday Tribute was the catalyst for the song's becoming a top 10 hit in the United States, peaking at number 6 on the Billboard Hot 100, and a top 10 hit in the United Kingdom, peaking at number 4 on the charts.

Critical reception[edit]

Rolling Stone ranked the song number 167 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.[1] It is Chapman's only song on the list (and the highest ranking song both written and performed by a female artist). Pitchfork Media placed the song at number 86 on their list of the 200 Best Songs of the 1980s.[2]

Chart performance[edit]

In April 2011 the track also hit the UK top ten at number 4 after Michael Collings performed it on Britain's Got Talent.[3] The single was certified Platinum in the United Kingdom by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) in 2014, based on digital downloads and streaming. The song has sold 661,500 copies in the United Kingdom, as of January 2016.[4]

Charts and certifications[edit]

Chart successions
Preceded by
"The Boys in Green" by Republic of Ireland Soccer Squad
Irish number one single
July 9, 1988 (1 week)
Succeeded by
"Nothing's Gonna Change My Love for You" by Glenn Medeiros
Preceded by
"I Don't Wanna Go on with You Like That" by Elton John
Canadian RPM Top Singles number-one single
September 3, 1988 (1 week)
Succeeded by
"Perfect World" by Huey Lewis and the News
Awards
Preceded by
Whitney Houston
for "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)"
Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance
1989
for "Fast Car"
Succeeded by
Bonnie Raitt
for "Nick of Time"

Jonas Blue version[edit]

"Fast Car"
Single by Jonas Blue featuring Dakota
Released 4 December 2015[19]
Format Digital download
Recorded 2015
Genre Tropical house
Length 3:32
Label
Writer(s) Tracy Chapman
Producer(s) Jonas Blue
Jonas Blue singles chronology
"Fast Car"
(2015)
"Perfect Strangers"
(2016)

In 2015, a tropical house cover of "Fast Car" was released by British record producer Jonas Blue. It is Blue's debut single and features the vocals from Dakota.[20]

Background and inspiration[edit]

In an interview with iHeartRadio, Blue stated, "When I was growing up, it was just a very varied type of music. My dad schooled me on soul, funk, disco, things like that. It was very varied. And then my mom was kind of more pop, and ABBA, things like that, Tracy Chapman. So it was a very varied sound growing up, lots of different big acts, and great songwriters. And [they all] definitely influenced me into what I'm doing today."[21] Regarding "Fast Car", Chapman's original 1988 hit is a favorite of Blue's mother's, who would often play it in the car. "It was a good song in London [during] that time when I was growing up, so it was always on the radio," he went on to say. "And it just kind of stuck with me. It was that song on the long journeys, and I loved it."[21]

Regarding Dakota, who provides vocals on the song, Blue said, "I met Dakota with my manager. I had actually finished the instrumental of 'Fast Car', and we were looking for a singer. But on this particular night, we went out, we weren't obviously looking for the singer. We just went to this pub for a beer, and this pub is kind of renowned for its new acts and unsigned artists and things like that. So, we're upstairs having a beer and all of a sudden we hear this voice from the basement downstairs of this pub, and I said, 'We've got to go down and check whoever that is up.' We went downstairs and Dakota was there, and we never met her before. At the end of the show, went up to her and said, 'I've done this cover of 'Fast Car' and I think you'd be great on it.' And she [said], 'Oh, I've never done dance music before or anything like that so, I'm not kind of sure.' And I was like, 'Listen, you'd be great.' And she came the next day to record it, and what you hear on the radio is her coming in the next day after her show to record it."[21] Blue also admitted that he wanted to create a Swedish-esque sound on the record: "I think with things like the synth lead lines in it, giving it that second hook, I was kind of going for a very kind of Swedish-y kind of sound. That's kind of the influence behind that kind of lead synth line, and that was something which I don't think people have picked up on yet, but they just like the song because of what it is."[21]

Chart performance[edit]

The Jonas Blue version peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart, behind Zayn Malik's "Pillowtalk".[22] Its UK peak meant it charted higher than Chapman's original, which peaked at number five on the chart in May 1988 and a position higher upon a re-release in April 2011.[23]

Outside the United Kingdom, the Jonas Blue version reached number one in Australia (Tobtok's version got more airplay).[24] and Hungary, whilst also peaking within the top ten in Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, New Zealand and Sweden. In the United States, the Jonas Blue version went to number one on the Dance Club Songs chart.

Charts and certifications[edit]

Charts[edit]

Chart (2015–16) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[25] 1
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[26] 3
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[27] 3
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)[28] 7
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[29]
[30]
27
Czech Republic (Rádio Top 100)[31] 3
Czech Republic (Singles Digitál Top 100)[32] 4
Denmark (Tracklisten)[33]
[34]
6
Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)[35] 10
France (SNEP)[36] 14
Germany (Official German Charts)[37] 2
Hungary (Dance Top 40)[38] 10
Hungary (Rádiós Top 40)[39] 1
Hungary (Single Top 40)[40] 1
Ireland (IRMA)[41] 2
Italy (FIMI)[42] 5
Latvia (Latvijas Top 40)[43] 1
Lebanon (Lebanese Top 20)[44] 11
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[45] 3
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[46] 3
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[47] 2
Norway (VG-lista)[48]
[49]
9
Poland (Polish Airplay Top 100)[50] 30
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[51] 1
Slovakia (Rádio Top 100)[52] 7
Slovakia (Singles Digitál Top 100)[53] 3
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[54] 18
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[55] 2
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[56] 4
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[57] 2
UK Dance (Official Charts Company)[58] 1
US Billboard Hot 100[59]
[60]
98
US Hot Dance/Electronic Songs (Billboard)[61]
[62]
7
US Dance Club Songs (Billboard)[63]
[64]
1
US Dance/Mix Show Airplay (Billboard)[65] 17

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[66] 4× Platinum 280,000^
Italy (FIMI)[67] 3× Platinum 150,000double-dagger
New Zealand (RMNZ)[68] 2× Platinum 0*
Poland (ZPAV)[69] 2× Platinum 40,000*
United Kingdom (BPI)[70] Platinum 600,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[71] Gold 500,000double-dagger

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
double-daggersales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Tobtok version[edit]

"Fast Car"
Single by Tobtok featuring River
Released 4 December 2015[72]
Format Digital download
Recorded 2015
Genre Tropical house
Length 3:27
Label disco:wax
Writer(s) Tracy Chapman
Producer(s) Tobtok

In 2015, another tropical house version was released by Swedish record producer Tobtok, featuring the vocals from British singer River. Tobtok also released an accompanying music video. The Tobtok version also charted in a number of charts, notably Australia, getting more airplay and reaching number 19 on the charts.[73] The Tobtok version also charted in the Norwegian VG-lista, Irish IRMA and Danish Tracklistan official charts.

Track listing
  1. "Fast Car" – 3:27
  2. "Fast Car" (L'Tric Remix Radio Edit) – 2:57

Charts[edit]

Chart (2015–16) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[74] 19
Denmark (Tracklisten)[75] 29
Ireland (IRMA)[76] 25
Norway (VG-lista)[77] 32
Poland (Polish Airplay Top 100)[78] 15

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[79] Gold 35,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

Other cover versions[edit]

The song has been covered many times including by The Flying Pickets, Hundred Reasons, Xiu Xiu, Vertical Horizon, Darwin's Waiting Room, Amazing Transparent Man, MYMP, The Wilkinsons, Mutya Buena, Kristian Leontiou, Wayne Wonder, David Usher, Linda Pritchard, Boyce Avenue (featuring Kina Grannis), Christian Kane, Mark Wilkinson, Elizabeth Gillies and Hitomi Yaida.

In 2010, Kelly Clarkson and Daughtry performed a duet of the song in concert. It was also sampled by the rap group Nice & Smooth in their hit song "Sometimes I Rhyme Slow", making it a hit within the hip-hop community as well. British rapper Example also samples the song in his "I Need a Fast Car", which appeared on his mixtape We Didn't Invent the Remix.

In 1991, British soul singer Gabrielle recorded a demo of her song "Dreams" that featured a sample of "Fast Car". When it was released commercially in 1993 the sample was removed because of legal issues, but the version with the sample was still being played in nightclubs and DJ sets. Los Angeles-based turntablist DJ Quixotic is known to perform a cover of "Fast Car" by manipulating a tone record on a turntable to imitate the notes of the opening guitar riffs. In 1991, Hong Kong Band Soft Hard covered this song in Cantonese.

The song was parodied as "I Write a Fast Song" in the In Living Color sketch "Making of a Tracy Chapman Song", in which Chapman (portrayed by Kim Wayans) writes a song by looking out her window and witnessing events such as an old man getting hit by a bus and a domestic dispute.

The song was featured in an episode of Jake and Amir, however the words are changed to "I got a fast Jake".

In mid-2008, Swimming With Dolphins released a recording of the song as a B-side track to their EP, Ambient Blue.[80]

In December 2010, Boyce Avenue[81] and Kina Grannis did an acoustic arrangement; as of October 2014 it had over 25 million views on YouTube and remains one of their most popular songs on iTunes.[82]

In April 2011, Michael Collings auditioned on Britain's Got Talent by singing his version of "Fast Car". As a result, the song peaked on number four in the UK Singles Chart in the United Kingdom, a position higher than its original peak in the country 23 years prior.[83]

In September 2014, Sam Smith covered the song on BBC Radio 1's Live Lounge.[84]

British singer Jasmine Thompson released a cover of the song in a tropical style in January 2016.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The RS 500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Rolling Stone. 2004-12-09. Retrieved 2010-01-15. 
  2. ^ "The 200 Best Songs of the 1980s". Pitchfork. August 23, 2015. Archived from the original on June 14, 2016. 
  3. ^ "Britain's Got Talent helps Fast Car speed into chart". BBC News. 24 April 2011. Retrieved 1 February 2016. 
  4. ^ a b Jones, Alan (January 29, 2016). "Official Charts Analysis: Bowie album chart domination continues". Music Week. Intent Media. Retrieved January 29, 2016. (subscription required (help)). 
  5. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Tracy Chapman – Fast Car". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  6. ^ "Ultratop.be – Tracy Chapman – Fast Car" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  7. ^ Canada peak
  8. ^ "Musicline.de – Tracy Chapman Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  9. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Fast Car". Irish Singles Chart.
  10. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Tracy Chapman – Fast Car". Top 40 Singles.
  11. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Tracy Chapman search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40.
  12. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Tracy Chapman – Fast Car". Singles Top 100.
  13. ^ a b "Tracy Chapman: Artist Chart History" Official Charts Company.
  14. ^ a b c "Fast Car: Rolling Stone". Rolling Stone. 2004-12-09. Retrieved 2010-01-15. 
  15. ^ "Tracy Chapman Album & Song Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved 2010-01-15. 
  16. ^ "Danishcharts.com – Tracy Chapman – Fast Car". Tracklisten.
  17. ^ "Italian single certifications – Tracy Chapman – Fast Car" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana.  Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter Tracy Chapman in the field Filtra. Select 1988 in the field Anno. The certification will load automatically
  18. ^ "British single certifications – Tracy Chapman – Fast Car". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Fast Car in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search
  19. ^ "Fast Car (feat. Dakota) [Radio Edit] - Single by Jonas Blue". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 8 February 2016. 
  20. ^ Deen, Khyle (25 January 2016). "Jonas Blue releases music video to global smash hit Fast Car feat. Dakota (VIDEO)". Purple Revolver. Retrieved 8 February 2016. 
  21. ^ a b c d Mastrogiannis, Nicole (March 24, 2016). "INTERVIEW: Who Is Jonas Blue? Everything You Need to Know". iHeartRadio. Retrieved July 11, 2016. 
  22. ^ Gibsone, Harriet (February 5, 2016). "Zayn Malik's debut solo single Pillowtalk goes straight to No 1". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved February 8, 2016. 
  23. ^ Myers, Justin (1 February 2016). "12 cover versions that charted higher than the originals". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 9 February 2016. 
  24. ^ Ryan, Gavin (30 January 2016). "ARIA Singles: Jonas Blue 'Fast Car' Is Australia's No 1". Noise11. Retrieved 30 January 2016. 
  25. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  26. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  27. ^ "Ultratop.be – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  28. ^ "Ultratop.be – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car" (in French). Ultratop 50.
  29. ^ "Jonas Blue – Chart history" Canadian Hot 100 for Jonas Blue.
  30. ^ http://www.billboard.com/charts/canadian-hot-100.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  31. ^ "ČNS IFPI" (in Czech). Hitparáda – Radio Top 100 Oficiální. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: insert {{{year}}}{{{week}}} into search.
  32. ^ "ČNS IFPI" (in Czech). Hitparáda – Digital Top 100 Oficiální. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: insert {{{year}}}{{{week}}} into search.
  33. ^ "Danishcharts.com – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". Tracklisten.
  34. ^ http://hitlisten.nu/default.asp?list=t40
  35. ^ "Jonas Blue: Fast Car (Feat. Dakota)" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland.
  36. ^ "Lescharts.com – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car" (in French). Les classement single.
  37. ^ "Musicline.de – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  38. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Dance Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége.
  39. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Rádiós Top 40 játszási lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége.
  40. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége.
  41. ^ "Chart Track: Week 8, 2016". Irish Singles Chart.
  42. ^ "Top Digital - Classifica settimanale WK 15 (dal 2016-04-08 al 2016-04-14)" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved 15 April 2016. 
  43. ^ "Latvijas Top 40". Latvijas Radio. 3 April 2016. Retrieved 3 April 2016. 
  44. ^ "The Official Lebanese Top 20 - Jonas_Blue". The Official Lebanese Top 20. Retrieved 10 April 2016. 
  45. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Jonas Blue Featuring Dakota search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40.
  46. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  47. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". Top 40 Singles.
  48. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". VG-lista.
  49. ^ http://lista.vg.no/liste/topp-20-single/1/dato/2016/uke/11
  50. ^ "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 100. Retrieved April 11, 2016.
  51. ^ "Archive Chart: 2016-01-29". Scottish Singles Top 40.
  52. ^ "SNS IFPI" (in Slovak). Hitparáda – Radio Top 100 Oficiálna. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: insert {{{year}}}{{{week}}} into search.
  53. ^ "SNS IFPI" (in Slovak). Hitparáda – Singles Digital Top 100 Oficiálna. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: insert {{{year}}}{{{week}}} into search.
  54. ^ "Spanishcharts.com – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car" Canciones Top 50.
  55. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". Singles Top 100.
  56. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". Swiss Singles Chart.
  57. ^ "Archive Chart: 2016-02-05" UK Singles Chart.
  58. ^ "Archive Chart: 2016-02-05" UK Dance Chart.
  59. ^ "Jonas Blue – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Jonas Blue.
  60. ^ http://www.billboard.com/charts/hot-100.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  61. ^ "Jonas Blue – Chart history" Billboard Hot Dance/Electronic Songs for Jonas Blue.
  62. ^ http://www.billboard.com/charts/dance-electronic-songs.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  63. ^ Illegal name entered Jonas Blue feat. Dakota/Jonas+Blue+feat.+Dakota/chart?f=359 "Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Chart history" Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs for Jonas Blue feat. Dakota.
  64. ^ http://www.billboard.com/charts/dance-club-play-songs/2016-04-09.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  65. ^ "Dance/Mix Show Airplay". Billboard. April 16, 2016. Retrieved March 29, 2016. 
  66. ^ "ARIA Australian Top 50 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. July 11, 2016. Retrieved July 9, 2016. 
  67. ^ "Italian single certifications – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved March 18, 2016.  Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter Jonas Blue feat. Dakota in the field Filtra. Select 2016 in the field Anno. The certification will load automatically
  68. ^ "New Zealand single certifications – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved April 1, 2016. 
  69. ^ "Polish single certifications – Jonas Blue – Fast Car" (in Polish). Polish Society of the Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 28 September 2016. 
  70. ^ "British single certifications – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved February 12, 2016.  Enter Fast Car in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search
  71. ^ "American single certifications – Jonas Blue feat. Dakota". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  72. ^ "Fast Car (feat. River) [Radio Edit] - Single by Tobtok". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 11 February 2016. 
  73. ^ Wass, Mike (January 4, 2016). "Battle of the "Fast Car" Covers: Jonas Blue Ft. Dakota Vs. TobTok Ft. River". Idolator. Retrieved February 8, 2016. 
  74. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Tobtok feat. River – Fast Car". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  75. ^ "Danishcharts.com – Tobtok feat. River – Fast Car". Tracklisten.
  76. ^ "Chart Track: Week 3, 2016". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  77. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Tobtok feat. River – Fast Car". VG-lista.
  78. ^ "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 100. Retrieved March 14, 2016.
  79. ^ Ryan, Gavin (March 5, 2016). "ARIA Singles: Lukas Graham Is No 1 for Third Week". Noise11. Retrieved March 5, 2016. 
  80. ^ ""Fast Car" (Swimming With Dolphins cover) on SoundCloud". SoundCloud. Retrieved May 9, 2014. 
  81. ^ Fast Car. YouTube. May 18, 2013. 
  82. ^ "Boyce Avenue", iTunes, May 18, 2013 
  83. ^ "Britain's Got Talent helps Fast Car speed into chart". BBC News. 2011-04-24. 
  84. ^ Blistein, Jon (September 4, 2014). "Sam Smith Offers Delicate Cover of Tracy Chapman's 'Fast Car'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved September 12, 2014. 

External links[edit]