You’ll know the song, even if you don’t know who originally sang it. A fast song about getting away from it all, ‘Fast Car’ was written by Tracy Chapman and released way back in 1988. Since then it’s been covered no fewer than 15 times, by artists such as Birdy, Boyce Avenue, Justin Bieber, Jonas Blue, Sam Smith, Passenger…the list is seemingly endless, with each the track their own flavour. And now it’s John Grimes’s turn, with his acoustic guitar cover, which he’s released as an IGTV exclusive.
’Fast Car’ was the lead single from Tracy Chapman’s self titled debut album, and is possibly her most famous song. Not only is it a fast song, it’s also a difficult one, with Chapman jam-packing it full of lyrics that she was able to faultlessly trip off her tongue.
It’s a testimony to John Grimes’s talent as both a vocalist and guitar playing that he can not only tackle this song with ease, but he is also able to put his own twist on the song. Like most of his other covers, this track is a bittersweet tune, which perfectly suits his vocals, and sees him make use of tremolo; he’s also able to control his breath superbly, hitting every note with pure emotion. It’s no feat considering the sheer number of words in each verse.
Unlike John’s other covers, which have been released on YouTube and Twitter, this one is exclusive to IGTV, and features John standing up to sing, and filmed in portrait mode, rather than landscape. It works well, and gives the cover a certain concert vibe.
Like all of John’s covers, it’s been shot straight to his phone, with no additional editing or production effects: it’s raw and pure, and altogether John – no added frills – but none are needed.
Listen to John’s cover of ‘Fast Car’ below.