When Chance rapped, “Kanye’s best prodigy, he ain't sign me but he’s proud of me,” you instantly realize how close he really is to his idol. We know they’ve worked together, performed together, but that line let us know that they’re more than just workers coming together to complete a job. Kanye sees in Chance what many of us do—infinite potential.
Today, Chance was interviewed by Zane Lowe on his Beats 1 radio show, streamed through Apple Music. Zane tends to do the big artists now—the Drakes, the Kanyes, and now Chance The Rapper. Listening to it live, Chance dropped a baby bomb that blew me away. He was directly offered a deal with G.O.O.D Music from Yeezy. When he said Kanye didn’t sign him but he's proud of him, I assumed that was a hypothetical, not a possible reality.
Chance wears his independence like a sweatshirt, to even bring him a deal it must be an offer he can not refuse. Well, Kanye made an offer and he refused. Imagine that. A contract was placed before him to sign under the icon Kanye West and he turned it down.
Notably, Kanye seemingly wasn’t bitter about it, although I’m pretty sure Kanye isn’t used to hearing “no” from artists. Even though Chance wouldn’t sign on the dotted line, he encouraged him to stay indie. Not the reaction you expect when someone turns you down—maybe if Kanye couldn’t have him he didn’t want any label to? Regardless, it proves that attempting to sign Chance just wasn’t a money decision. This is someone he believes in, and deal or no deal, Kanye will continue to believe.
Did Chance choose wisely? Should he have joined G.O.O.D Music and finally felt the support of the mainstream machine? There are pros and cons. A Kanye feature versus gaining full support from a label are two very different circumstances. Money and resources become available—if they drove Desiigner to number one, imagine what they could do for Chano.
With that said though, I think Chance made the right decision. Being independent is risky, a constant uphill battle, but the freedom you’re allowed is priceless. Chance hasn’t lost his freedom. Without a label, he’s been able to accomplish some amazing things, which I'm sure came with a hefty price tag, but he proved you could do it. He's creating his own machine to make the impossible, possible. We’ll be proud of him then like we’re proud of him now. Just like Kanye will be proud of him.
By Yoh, aka Fake Louis Vuitton Backpack aka @Yoh31.