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Watch Tracy Chapman and Luke Combs’ Stunning Performance of “Fast Car”

Feb 19, 2024

Since the Grammy Awards ceremony on February 4, the country and folk music worlds have waited with bated breath for the Recording Academy to share a stand-alone video of Tracy Chapman and Luke Combs’ stunning collaboration on their mutual, cross-generational hit, “Fast Car.” Late last week, the Academy made our dreams come true – you can now watch the performance in its entirety. (View above.)

The song was a highlight of the Grammys’ primetime telecast and, to its global audience and more than one commentator, signaled a sense of unity and come-togetherness that many feel is woefully lacking in the current zeitgeist, news cycle, and pop culture content machines. Chapman seemed to glow while Combs quite obviously basked in her limelight, content in sharing the stage and the iconic song with one of his childhood heroes. Chapman, something of a recluse in the past two decades, occupied the enormous Crypto.com Arena stage with a quiet confidence and an undercurrent of joy. An electric energy emanated from her guitar strings as she picked the unmistakable melodic hook. Then, on the song’s soaring chorus, the two sang in unison, finding power and common ground in a lyric that has now been sung, heard, and enjoyed by millions more – and entirely new generations.

In the audience, celebrities and musicians like Taylor Swift, Michael Trotter of the War and Treaty, Brandi Carlile, and many more sang along boisterously, indicating the staying power of the song and its lyrics – and the long-lasting adoration held by so many for Chapman.

“Fast Car” will continue to resonate long into the future – and not just on road trip playlists. It’s a perfect, sonic example of the angst endemic to the American dream, of queer placemaking and history-telling, and of all the ways a story so specific, granular, and microscopic could feel entirely universal and relatable. There’s a reason why so many listeners have needed reminding that Combs didn’t, in fact, write the song himself – no matter who we are, where we come from, or who we love, we all so easily see ourselves reflected in “Fast Car.” We’re each hungry for that reflection; “Fast Car” is satiating and then some.

For a brief moment during the Grammys’ 66th Awards Ceremony, we were all contented, joyful passengers in Chapman and Combs’ cosmic “Fast Car.” Let’s each take time to continue to inhabit that moment, as we navigate the traffic of our busy, distinct, distracting, and often divided lives.


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Watch Tracy Chapman and Luke Combs' Stunning Performance of
Watch Tracy Chapman and Luke Combs' Stunning Performance of