Wendy Jane’s Weekend Sounds – Reader’s Choice Contest Winner: Fast Car by Tracy Chapman

30 Mar

Thanks to all of you who nominated woman artists and songs for the final selection of WJSS Weekend Sounds honoring Women’s History Month.

The nominees were all listed and this morning, Darla’s sleepover friend, Sophia, the only one besides me awake at the time, selected the winner.

And, the winner is……

Sophia holding the winning entry: Fast Car by Tracey Chapman

Sophia holding the winning entry: Fast Car by Tracy Chapman

Fast Car by Tracy Chapman.  This entry was submitted by Kelly Quinn. (Only showing Sophia’s hands here, since she wasn’t happy with her “wake-up face” look:)

Other entries included:

Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush – Tyler Grimes

Cancao do Mar by Amelia Rodriguez – Martinha Javid

Miss Otis Regrets by Ella Fitzgerald – Jane Strisik Busker

Elizabeth Cotten –  Ryan Stevenson

Mchell N’degecello – Sarah Grossman

Chaka Khan –  Davey Jay Clay

Mississippi Goddam  by Nina Simone – Gini Laffey

I Got Life by Nina Simone – David Hayes

All the rest were submitted by Kelly Quinn (she said when she found out her entry won, that perhaps the deck was loaded:)

Legend Of A Cowgirl by Imani Coppola

This Woman’s Work by Kate Bush

Piece Of My Heart by Janis Joplin

Natural Woman by Carole King

The Weakness In Me by Joan Armatrading

I’m A Woman by Peggy Lee

Case Of You by Joni Mitchell

I met Kelly Quinn on Facebook through mutual friends. Like me, Kelly’s from Waterbury–the H2O, the “Dirty Water”, the “Dirty,” but I didn’t know her growing up because she’s a little younger than me, and went to rival high school, Kennedy.  I was a Wilby girl. (Read more about growing up in Waterbury here in my past post, Keeping It (Un)Real In The “Dirty Water”).

Kelly is a beautiful woman with a beautiful spirit.  She is super funny, in that fearless, not shy kind of way, where she can just say whatever she wants to say, be who she is, and not care what others think.  She’s lived the way I always strive to live–in her embracing of diversity, of all of humanity–knowing that’s what makes life rich.  On top of that, she is intelligent, soulful, willful, and generous, caring and compassionate beyond belief.  Kelly, a case manager, is the mother of a wonderful teenage boy, Austin–I know, because I was lucky enough to meet him last summer.  Kelly is also the captain of the H2O Angels.  The team raises money for the American Cancer Society through Relay For Life.  Kelly says, “I started the team after losing my Mom, Dad, and (friend) Vin to cancer and watching my baby niece Quinn fight at only 7 months! (I fought it too).”

Kelly Quinn

Kelly Quinn

It’s interesting to me today, knowing the connection of Kelly’s experiences with cancer, to the song that happened to be picked today.

Like Kelly’s loss, I lost my Mom to brain cancer when I was 26.  I even mention Fast Car in the memoir writing I’m working on–the scene with Fast Car is part of a section of work that captures the year my mother became ill and passed away.  The excerpt reads…

You got a fast car
I want a ticket to anywhere
Maybe we make a deal
Maybe together we can get somewhere

                                      Fast Car by Tracy Chapman


That song was heard a lot on the radio at this time, and I remember hearing it in the car one day when Michael gave me a ride to visit my mother at Cornell Hospital. Michael, my on-again, off-again boyfriend had come back into the picture when I told him about my mother’s terminal illness. The song playing felt right. The slow tune about a fast car, the ticket to anywhere but where I was right now, the fast stuck in the languid smoothness of Tracy’s voice, me moving fast, but stuck in bitter honey; in the slow-motion of catastrophe.


When I shared my song connection with Kelly, she related to me that her song memory with her Mom was Enya’s Sail Away.  Kelly said she played the song for her mother over and over again, and how if she now hears even one note of that song, it makes “the bubble that resides in my chest burst a little..”

I felt blessed to have that exchange with Kelly.  People can tend to negate the connections on social media, the “virtual friendships” as false, as less than our face-to-face relationships.

Yet, I have made such beautiful, profound connections here on WJSS and on Facebook and Twitter.  My heart is so full today, it’s almost as if that bubble that resides in my chest may burst, which to not go off on another tangent, but here is another example of the way we connect in these spaces:

I write daily poems made from my friends’ Status Updates on Facebook.  Today Kelly picked up on one of the lines in the poem which read: bubble of love time, contributed by my friend, Martinha Javid.  Kelly shared the poem and gave her inspired take on that line, and how she wanted to create her own love bubble where she, and all of us, create our own love bubbles where we surround ourselves with love, and create a space (real or spiritual) where only love is.

Connections between friends, old and new, started flying in a flurry of comments–Kelly suggested I become a friend of hers that she thought I might enjoy knowing.  Marthina got to see how her one line, taken out of context, started an inspiring thought and action for today.

Thank you all for sharing in this week’s song pick, and for being the catalysts that feed my soul, and inspire me on a daily basis.  And, now, here is Tracy Chapman with Fast Car, here to inspire us all.


SOURCE:  www.youtube.com, Fast Car by Tracy Chapman posted by rocknbaires

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