Avid listeners and aspiring rappers alike were pretty shaken up last week when they learned that SoundCloud, the music streaming platform that allows independent artists to upload their music and has played an instrumental part in launching several successful careers, was running out of money and could potentially be calling it quits in the next 80 days. It was unsurprising that Chance The Rapper immediately took an interest in the situation. The rapper, who is yet to release a physical copy of his music, is a vocal advocate of the platform, shouting SoundCloud out during his Grammy’s acceptance speech in February. Shortly after tweeting that he was “working on the SoundCloud thing,” fans were ecstatic to see that SoundCloud would not be going anywhere after a “very fruitful call” with the SC CEO. As there is currently no indication that Chance has invested in the company to keep it afloat, it is unclear what role exactly he played in saving it, but his interest and efforts were duly noted. This type of genuine concern for not just a platform that has allowed for him to become the first streaming-only artist to win a Grammy, but also that provides a space for so many talented independent artists to get their start, is just so Chance. It seems that he is consistently proving his reputation as a really nice, conscious guy who is always doing his part to better the world around him.
As a native to Chicago’s south side, Chance has always been loyal to his roots, ensuring that his city grows right alongside him as his fame does. With the Illinois school system being one of the most underfunded in the country, the young rapper has given his all to lift these young minds up and help provide them with a “quality learning experience.” In addition to his personal donation of $1 million, he has worked hard with donors to raise an additional $2.2 million to provide resources for Chicago Public Schools, ensuring that the most needy school will be the ones affected. He describes his effort as “direct and intentional,” clearly demonstrating that this cause is personal to him, and he wants to make sure that it is handled so as to help in the biggest way possible. On top of this amazing display of generosity, he has also collaborated with the Children First Fund to launch the New Chance Arts and Literature fund to launch art programs and supply schools with art supplies, starting during the 2017/2018 school year. In underfunded schools, the arts are often the first programs to slip through the cracks, and Chance strives to make sure Chicago students are not deprived of learning to express themselves creatively.
The Chicago rapper has also teamed with his father in the past on the anti-violence #SaveChicago campaign labor day weekend 2014. Through several ambiguous tweets, Chance contributed to the movement that was fighting to combat the lofty murder rate in the midwest city. The masses flocked to street corners holding signs saying #SaveChicago, hoping to eliminate any shootings for a duration of the weekend. Thanks to the efforts of supporters such as Chance, the city went a complete 42 hours from Thursday until Sunday without a single reported gun violence victim.
In addition to his tangible efforts to improve his community, he also spreads optimism and wholesomeness to everything he touches. He serves as a very real, positive role model for men around the world. The way he stepped up to become a highly involved, extremely proud father to daughter Kensli in 2015 after an unexpected pregnancy by his ex girlfriend provides the true definition of what it means to be a man. His relentless positivity is admirable when he shows in his actions and in his music how to persevere despite adversity, and also how to be grateful for whatever blessings you may have. When delivering a lecture at New York University, he advised the students, “every single person you meet, look at them like a golden million dollar baby.” This message of open mindedness and optimism is exactly what the world needs. He is a beacon of light in an industry that can get so wrapped up in exclusion, crime and negativity. Chance is not blindly optimistic; he acknowledges hardship and sadness, but where he rises above the rest is showing his fans how to latch onto positivity in your life and how to make an effort to change or eliminate whatever is spouting negativity.