Chance the Rapper dropped his mixtape, Chance 3 — Coloring Book, last night. We all, as the big Chance fans we are, took a quick listen and wrote our immediate reactions. Enjoy


Chance has such a knack to Frankenstein multiple types of emotion and ways of life together to make a song. When I listen to “Summer Friends” I feel nostalgic, relaxed, and ashamed. Summer in Chicago, especially the south side is not like a normal summer and Chance conveyed that through this song. Back home on the Cape (and I assume any beach related area), that song will be an anthem.

“Summer People, Some are not”

That is a mantra back home to separate who the real people are, and who are just there for a moment and then gone forever. Yea we all have “Summer Friends” but Chance’s friends, like many people’s friends in Chicago die in the summer. We turn a blind eye too it though, I went through my childhood thinking everything was rainbows and cupcakes on the beach while kids my age in Chicago have to be inside before nightfall (enter my shame).

Chance is an extremely poignant and deep thinking artist. His words have substance, and the story of his life/career is inspirational. His second verse in “Blessings” is the epitome of how he made it, and how he is going to stay for good.

“Ain’t no blood on my money, Ain’t no Twitter in Heaven”


I thought the mixtape was great! The prodigal of Kanye, so we know he can whip up a beat and present us with an arrangement that will make the hair on your neck stand up. Combined with his creativity, lyrical prowess, faith in himself and God…Chance knocked it out the park.

The Grammy’s announced that you no longer have to sell music to be in consideration to win an award; I’m interested to see what’ll happen.


The anti – label of hip hop is at its apex, no doubt confirmed by less human than ever Kanye West’s MSG fashion show/Young Thug appreciation night/album release for TLOP. The point of hip hop, for me as a white dude – is mostly that this music isn’t made for me, more than a couple folks would say I don’t deserve it because of the color of my skin. That’s correctly justifiable – however, it’s still applicable in the way touches really come in hearing word flows of experiences that aren’t relatable to normal people, non rappers, non celebrities, non rock stars.

So, in an era flush with grass fed beef fanbases – this third tape from Mr. Bennett was as well promoted as one can be through viral-ness of anti record label nut holstering – as evidenced on No Problem with the line about dreads in label lobbies. These movements mirror each other – and sonorously I’m not over wowed with the production in the way I was at the high points of 2013’s Acid Rap – responsible for the overnight fame he touches on in the last Macklemore release.

I fear it didn’t need to be as much – and although I’m not heading to the hills to scream about the feeling of being inside an abstract painting like I was after the first seven hundred Yeezus listens – this project is really, really fucking good.

Hearing about shit you’re likely never going to do gets repetitive – this is an identifiable problem for listeners in my demographic who’ve neither had to worry about food on the table nor considered the music as anything more than entertainment. This is why the story telling of today’s age needs come into such serious play. To see yourself in the room – even momentarily, is more than a day dream. It becomes realistic – and it’s how people become great. Acid Rap didn’t do that for the majority of Chance’s fanbase – it’s something I’ll stake to steadfastly because the project is something I can relate to (in bits and pieces) on a very personal level. What Coloring Book does do is tell a new chapter, in a new set of clothes, with a new set of characters. This is what happens when people learn how to think for themselves.

What the project loses in the flippancy of youth it retains in Bennet’s raw energy and the exuberant joy of a child – no matter the subject matter. It’s the reciprocal of how to carbon copy yourself at age 19…see :  the single greatest late night show performance of all time

Time moves – people change. Chance is world famous now, he’s got several million Twitter followers, an infant daughter and a diversified business line. He did what I thought he’d do with this project in the sense that he’s still vulnerable in the same places ie. deeper elaboration on Xanax mentions from the projects hit single, Angels. You can see where he’s moving toward sold out stadiums and even higher reaches of social status with the Bieber feature on Juke Jam. I can’t believe fucking Young Thug is on this – I’m not sure about Mixtape just yet – it’s gratuitous, but largely true. Summer Friends is a highlight – and underscores points of basic people shit among the fame he sings about, thus making it sexy and listenable, and Future on Smoke Break does loads of good for the project in the way that half hour naps rejuvenate but that extra ten minutes will fucking wreck you. The line about being Kanye’s best prodigy on the final track, the second Blessings – is the point to where this whole vibe is going.

Drake gave us gold spattered ghosts of strippers dancing around the cabana  –  Chance gave us his family, is reinventing Chicago under Kanye’s eye – and is really, seriously making me consider catholicism.



I got my first two listens of Coloring Book in while I was taking the subway from South Boston to Quincy, and then driving from Quincy to Hull, at 8:00 am on a Friday morning. While hungover. Needless to say – I was very attentive to the mixtape.

Chance’s third mixtape release is one that seems very well received everywhere except for Reddit, but Reddit hates everything, which is also why I love Reddit. But I really don’t see too much to hate on in this case. Chance has very humanizing, sometimes relatable subject matters throughout his lyrics. The production sounds like a Kanye West spin-off, which is always nice, and the features are solid (Jay Electronica, what the hell dude. Release something). Maybe too much use of a choir, and Chance doesn’t sound too great with autotune – there are my criticisms.

But without rambling on for 1,000 words like I would do for Aubrey Graham, I’ll keep it short and sweet by saying that I hope Coloring Book catapults Chance because quite frankly, he is perfectly fit to be a superstar. His persona just fits the role well. The kid (I can call him that because I’m older than him) has a unique way of just making you feel genuinely happy – like smiling to yourself alone happy – and his music is unique in this day of hip hop. He is one of rap’s “good guys.” He has the backing and the co-signs that it takes to rise up in the game, and he also has resources – his dad worked for Obama, did you know that?

This will be the turning point in Chance’s career. Acid Rap gave us a young star, and Coloring Book is already giving us the perform-on-a-late-night-show star. That’s a new level. You can form your own opinion on this mixtape – I’m not going to tell you to like it or not. But hip hop heads have been on Chance for a few years now. It’s time for America to catch up. The music industry is better with him in it.

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by The Open Field Staff



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