Tracy Chapman quotes:

  • I dressed up as a veterinarian for a Halloween costume party. I had the lab coat. I got a couple of stuffed animals for patients and put bandages on them.

  • I'm still thinking and hoping there's an opportunity for people to have better lives and that significant change can occur.

  • Songwriting is a very mysterious process. It feels like creating something from nothing. It's something I don't feel like I really control.

  • I meet people in my daily life, people who seem to experience some change and some growth on a personal level, and that gives me hope.

  • Music was never just a hobby for me. I'd pick up a guitar every day to work on whatever I was writing at the time. I would put my ideas in songs the way some people might put them in diaries or journals.

  • I often write either really early in the morning, or really late at night.

  • You got a fast car But is it fast enough so we can fly away We gotta make a decision We leave tonight or live and die this way.

  • I love living in California and being able to go to the beach or go to the woods.

  • People's real hopes and dreams can be distorted and misdirected and packaged until you're not sure what you really want or what you even really need.

  • I don't know - I'm not sure about anything as far as religion and spirituality go.

  • Some things remain fragments, just the lyrics and melodies or a line or two or a verse.

  • After it's finished, sometimes I can trace a path that goes back to the possible source of inspiration.

  • I really love playing music with other people. It's more fun to be on the road with others. It's kind of lonely out there when you play on your own!

  • Men are able to sustain a career into their 50s and 60s and still present themselves as sex symbols. With women, on the other hand, people say, 'Why doesn't she retire?'

  • I'm not sure about anything as far as religion and spirituality go.

  • We have more media than ever and more technology in our lives. It's supposed to help us communicate, but it has the opposite effect of isolating us.

  • If you are living a life that feels right to you, if you're willing to take creative chances or a creative path that feels like it's mostly in keeping with your sensibilities, you know, aesthetic and artistic, then that's what matters.

  • I've seen and met angels wearing the disguise of ordinary people living ordinary lives.

  • At this point in my life I'd like to live as if only love mattered.

  • I see some recurring themes: things that feel threaded together, some symbolic references, and songs about some of the big questions, like death. There are a lot of references to weather, too!

  • What does the future look like if the heads of society ask our young people to risk their lives for questionable causes? I think it looks rather bleak.

  • I think many people would say that writers like Stephen King have hypergraphia.

  • I think religion played a huge part in Bush's re-election.

  • When you feel like you've had a good show, you go backstage and you talk to yourself about it, and if you have a bad show you talk to yourself about it.

  • Love's a recurring theme through my work.

  • It's fun playing small venues.

  • I may be revered or defamed and decried; But I tried to live my life right.

  • I end up writing about all kinds of things. I never make an attempt to write about anything in particular. I don't have a little list of topics to write about.

  • Love is hateWar is PeaceNo is YesAnd we're all free.

  • So much has happened to obscure the dialogue about race and about gender and discrimination in general, especially where those things touch on economics.

  • With other people, you're always swapping music. Somebody is always listening to something you've never heard. It's a great way to hear all sorts of new things.

  • There are good reasons for being in jail - for protesting.

  • I found myself in the middle of a race riot when I was about 14 years old, and I found someone pointing a gun at me and telling me to run or they'd shoot me.

  • Everyone is looking for connections between the songs. I don't usually approach a record as a concept. There's no overriding theme I'm trying to represent. It's all about the individual songs.

  • I picked up the guitar at 11, but even before then, I was writing songs on the organ.

  • Growing up in Cleveland, I learned about singing from my mother, who had once sung professionally and who admired Mahalia Jackson and Aretha Franklin.

  • The songs are not necessarily autobiographical. A lot of songs are a combination of influences. It might be some part of my life, or something I've felt, or something somebody's told me. It all comes together.

  • Maybe it's naive to say, but it almost seems like, in the past, people tried to sell you something you would actually need, like a hammer or a broom or a toothbrush. But now there's this notion that they can sell you anything. And all they have to do is convince you that you need it.

  • The way popular music is categorized and formatted cuts down on everyone's options. And although people don't talk about it, there are a lot of issues of race determining musical categories of what's rock, R&B, or even folk. It ends up restricting creativity.

  • As you might imagine, I'm approached by lots of organizations and lots of people who want me to support their various charitable efforts in some way. And I look at those requests, and I basically try to do what I can.

  • A lot of kids spent more time out of school than in, but I always loved school and thought it was my way out of Cleveland, and out of poverty.

  • I never assumed I would have that commercial success, so it was a total surprise. And honestly, I never assumed that it would ever happen again.

  • My older sister encouraged me from early on and bought me one of the first guitars I had. She listened to all of the crappy songs that I wrote when I was 8 years old and encouraged me to keep doing it.

  • I'm a hopeful cynic.

  • As a child I always had a sense of social conditions and political situations. I think it had to do with the fact that my mother was always discussing things with my sister and me - also because I read a lot.

  • We all must live our lives always feeling, always thinking the moment has arrived.

  • As a child I spent a lot of time at the library.

  • At this point in my life Id like to live as if only love mattered.

  • Consume more than you need This is the dream Make you pauper Or make you queen I won't die lonely I'll have it all prearranged A grave that's deep and wide enough For me and all my mountains o'things

  • Have faith in humankind a respect for what is earthly and an unfaltering belief in peace and understanding

  • I don't try to project any image at all, other than the person that I am.

  • I don't want someone to squeeze me, that might take away my life. Just want someone to hold me, and we'll rock through the night.

  • I got a plan to get out of here, I've been working at a convenient store.

  • I learn all these things about the record talking about it after it's finished.

  • I think it's important, if you are an artist, to use your music to stand up for what you believe in.

  • I'll toss my coins in the fountain, Look for clovers in grassy lawns Search for shooting stars in the night Cross my fingers and dream on.

  • I'm never sure if I'll ever write another song, what the song will be about and if what initially sparked the beginning of a song might complete it.

  • I'm not sure if the next song I write is going to be about love or a song about a tree.

  • It's time to start all over/make a new beginning.

  • My old man's got a problem, he lives with the bottle.

  • Now love's the only thing that's free /We must take it where it's found /Pretty soon it may be costly

  • Renounce all those material things that you gained by exploiting other human beings.

  • So don't be tempted by the shiny apple Don't you eat of a bitter fruit Hunger only for a taste of justice Hunger only for a world of truth 'Cause all that you have is your soul.

  • There's a power in words. There's a power in being able to explain and describe and articulate what you know and feel and believe about the world, and about yourself.

  • This youthful heart can love you and give you what you need, but I'm too old to go chasing you around wasting my precious energy.

  • We are the spirit, the collective conscience. We create the pain, and suffering, and beauty in this world.

  • Who took away the part so essential to the whole Left you a hollow body Skin and bone.

  • Why do babies starve /When there's enough food to feed the world /Why when there's so many of us /Are there people still alone

  • Words don't come easily, like forgive me.

  • You have to pay attention to the moment and make it the best it can be for you. I've been trying to do that. It's really made a major difference for me. I'm a happier person.