Sufjan Stevens has shared a new song titled “Tonya Harding” this morning, a tribute to the American figure skater.
In an essay shared with the new song, Stevens says he first saw Harding U.S. Figure Skating Championships in 1991. He says he was inspired by her story, a young woman from a working-class family in Portland, Oregon who rose to fame as one of the greatest figure skaters of her time. “Just some Portland white trash / You confronted your sorrow / Like there was no tomorrow / While the rest of the world only laughed,” he wrote in the lyrics.
“Tonya shines bright in the pantheon of American history simply because she never stopped trying her hardest. She fought classism, sexism, physical abuse and public rebuke to become an incomparable American legend.”
Take a listen to the gorgeous song below, as well as art work done by Stephen Halker.
Sufjan Stevens shared two versions of the song, one in D Major and another in Eb major. The former is available above, and latter on Apple Music / Spotify / bandcamp.
Image courtesy digboston via Flickr