AS a child Newcastle singer-songwriter Grace Turner would often spend hours in the backseat of her family car driving to Adelaide to visit relatives.
A constant companion on the car radio during the monotony was Tracey Chapman's self-titled debut album.
"I have these strong memories of driving on the hay plains listening to Tracey Chapman and just being really struck by her voice," Turner says. "It was quite profound."
Later in high school the first song Turner performed live after learning the guitar at 15 was Chapman's Baby Can I Hold You.
Tracey Chapman was released in 1988 at a time when stadium rock and synthesized pop music dominated the charts. Chapman's bluesy-folk stories about racial inequality and poverty - influenced by her upbringing in Cleveland - stood in complete contrast to the rock'n'roll excess and flamboyance of bands like Guns N' Roses.
Despite having more in common with '60s folk legends like Joan Baez, Chapman's debut topped the charts in the US and UK and won three Grammy Awards, including Best New Talent. The singles Talkin' Bout A Revolution, Fast Car and Baby Can I Hold You have become classics.
Three decades after its release tracks like Across The Lines remain potent. Here Chapman sang of the racial divide: "Choose sides/ Or run for your life/ Tonight the riots begin/ On the back streets of America/ They kill the dream of America." The song could have been written in June 2020 in the aftermath of George Floyd's death.
"I was always struck by how they're just very meaningful songs," Turner says. "It's horrible it's stood the test of time in that sense. That we're still dealing with those issues. She speaks about them so powerfully and honestly."
The biggest lesson Turner has taken from Chapman's songwriting is the importance of marrying meaningful lyrics to solid song structures. One falls down without the other.
"The most profound thing about songwriting is being able to tell a story and someone's experience," she says.
Turner's latest single, Half Light, from her forthcoming debut EP Half Truths follows that belief. The indie-folk song has been the centre piece of Turner's live set for some time and focuses on the repetitive use and multiple meanings of the word "half", before exploding into atmospheric guitar.
"It encapsulates the work I've put into songwriting," Turner says. "It's kind of confusing, but the meaning is subtle, but powerful."
Half Light also explores duality, a concept that's long been a focus for Turner.
"I feel like I have many different sides to myself, which I sometimes battle or sometimes appreciate," she says. "Even knowing what to do with your life, we have to cater to many different parts of ourselves.
"One part might want to be free and travelling and touring and the other side of me wants to be curled up at home, living this safer life."
Grace Turner's Half Light is out now and the EP Half Truths is released on August 7.