New Beginning

New Beginning

by Tracy ChapmanTracy Chapman


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One might assume that the difference between Tracy Chapman's third album, which spent less than three months in the charts (and took nine years to reach gold status) after her first two albums had sold in the millions, and her fourth, which restored her to substantial commercial success, was the album's hit single, "Give Me One Reason." In fact, after a disappointing start, New Beginning turned around and started selling a few months after its release and before the single took off. It went gold the week that "Give Me One Reason" hit the charts. Of course, having a hit single helps, too, but since "Give Me One Reason" is a nearly generic blues song that isn't particularly characteristic of Chapman or of the album, it may have brought in an audience that didn't get what it expected. Though she has added a backup band, Chapman continues to take a simple musical approach that focuses attention on her voice and to sing lyrics that alternate between intimate emotional portraits and broad political generalizations that seem more felt than deeply thought out. Three songs here, "Heaven's Here on Earth," "The Rape of the World," and the title cut, are about the state of the whole world, which is viewed in either excessively sunny or gloomy terms. As such, Chapman's relationship songs, though they too can be a little vague, register more powerfully because they are so personal. As the title suggests, Chapman is adopting a more open and hopeful posture in both her feelings and her politics on New Beginning, and while the surprise success of "Give Me One Reason" is heartening from a career perspective, that's the real news here.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/14/1995
Label: Elektra / Wea
UPC: 0075596185028
catalogNumber: 61850
Rank: 40692

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Tracy Chapman   Primary Artist,Organ,Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Vocals,Background Vocals
Lili Haydn   Violin
John Philip Shenale   Keyboards
John Thomas   Piano
Eric Rigler   Human Whistle,Scottish Small Pipes
Cameron Stone   Cello
Scott Roewe   Didjeridu
Rock Deadrick   Percussion,Drums,Background Vocals
Andy Stoller   Bass,Background Vocals,Tamboura
Adam Levy   Electric Guitar,Background Vocals
Glenys Rogers   Percussion,Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Tracy Chapman   Composer,Producer
Don Gehman   Producer,Engineer
Lee Cantelon   Art Direction

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