rapping is so easily picked up by many, that the actual challenge is establishing originality to the skill. 

My first thoughts on Chance the Rapper were:

1. It's corny that he has 'rapper' in his artist name.

2. He sounds like a knock off of Lil Wayne 😒

Chance exceeded my expectations and I grew to love his music as he brought a genuine sound to the rap scene. The first song I fell in love with was "Juke Juke" off his 10Day tape. Caleb James produced the track over an Isley Brothers sample, adding a creative bounce with a uptempo switch up. It wasn't til I moved on to Chance's Acid Rap that I knew that he was a blessing to the rap game 🙏🏾 His musicality, exquisite work ethic with his team and other artists as well as the creative business decisions made such as offering his music for free while capitalizing on merch and tour. Chance did the unthinkable by using streaming sites to his advantage and taking the music industry to a new level.

His latest offering, Coloring Book, came randomly but was well accepted as we all were expecting some new Chance at this point. Featuring an abundance of notable artists meshed with Chance's close, neighborhood family, the rapper brings a Hip-Hop/Gospel medley of uplifting and enjoyable vibes for many. Providing an 'entree,' the rapper opens up the mixtape with those familiar hi-hat claps and horns on "All We Got" (featuring Kanye West and the Chicago Children's Choir) as he did on the "Good Ass Intro" for Acid Rap. "Chance holds his own featuring this year's hottest artists on tracks like "Mixtapes" featuring Young Thug and Lil Yatchy and "Smoke Break" with Future. The 23 year old Chicago native also reiterates his South-side roots as he chants his block (79th Street) in "How Great" featuring Jay Electronica.

From past accolades such as performing on Saturday Night Live (SNL), Jimmy Fallon, and being Kanye's unsigned prodigy, Chance has not only expanded his audience but has created a strong establishment in his independence as an artist. I see Chance being a serious advocate in his community and for upcoming artists looking to successfully make it as he did without a label.  Coloring Book has ignited his career for the masses as I'm ready to see the next coming creations he has to offer from this body of work. He has signified his mark in this industry, posing a threat to all major labels but also an inspiration to the forthcoming creatives looking to push the envelope as well.

Stream his 14-track mixtape to the right.