Chance The Rapper is on a roll. After bagging several Grammy nominations including best new artist and best rap album for his beloved 2016 effort Coloring Book, the Chicago “man-child” (his word) now flashes his toothy grin and signature “3” hat on the February cover for GQ magazine.
The “No Problem” rapper discusses the origin story of his stage name and why he considers his cap-wearing a “rebellion” that stems from his high school days. Beyond admitting his hatred of vegetables and love for frozen yogurt, Chance also discusses the prospect of having more children, why he doesn’t want to be like Kanye West personality-wise and the repercussions of a Donald Trump presidency.
Read the highlights below and the full feature here.
On wanting more kids:
Not right now. It’s a lot to try and be a good dad right now. With all the distractions and all the things that I’m limited in doing by living in Chicago and being a person of notoriety. I don’t wanna tack on anything. I want to get my relationship with Kinsley down pat and also just get older. I’m 23. I had her when I was 22. If I am gonna have more kids, it’ll be a blessing and I’ll accept it as a responsibility and a privilege, but I’m definitely not trying to have more kids right now.
On the most romantic thing he has done for a woman:
I’ve done some grandiose things.… Oh! I got it. I had a girlfriend in high school and I published a poem on Facebook about her, and I remember everybody flaming my ass for it forever. I hope that s–t is gone, actually. I gotta check.
On being like Kanye:
I don’t think I ever wanted to be like Kanye in personality, though. I think I definitely want to, have always wanted to, have his boldness or assurance in myself. But I’ve definitely seen Kanye do things where I was like, “I’d never do that.” I’ve always been able to defend Kanye. When everybody’s like, “Kanye’s a nut, Kanye’s a nut,” I’m one of those guys saying, “No, he’s saying some real s–t.” Like when he went onstage with Taylor, I was, like…well…Beyoncé kind of deserved that. [laughs] I’m rationalizing everything that he does, but I can’t say that in the same position I would do the same things. Being around Kanye, Kanye says crazier s–t in private than he does in public, which is hard to believe because he says the craziest things in public. He does have a filter. He’s not a liar or somebody that is going to sugarcoat things when he does speak. But Kanye’s said some crazy s–t to me where I respond, “No, I don’t feel you at all.” I always wanted to be more of a person that people enjoy. Somebody that will make you laugh. I’m talking about just my personality, not necessarily how my music sounds. Because I believe I’m a disrupter like Kanye in a lot of ways.
On the last time he was broke:
I go broke a lot … I go broke a lot because I have this understanding that whatever I put out there, if I really am doing what’s right, it’s going to be rewarding, you know? If I’m working on it—if I’m diligently working on it—something will come back. And that’s how every project has been since I was in high school, since I was Instrumentality [Chance’s musical alter ego in high school] and I was giving out CDs for free. Everything has come back tenfold. I remember sitting on the back of the bus on the first day of the Social Experiment tour, with my face in my hands. I emptied out my bank account, and before I did that tour that was the number one thing I said I’d never do. I’ll never empty out my savings. But I put all that money up, and within two weeks, when everyone was getting paid, I was like, Okay, cool we’re good again … The same s–t happened with Surf. And the same s–t happened with Coloring Book. I was f–king around in this studio—like this studio is stupid expensive.
On not being scared of a Trump presidency:
You gotta just understand, like, s–t has been f–ked-up, right? Like, “Make America Great Again,” that’s not a real thing because s–t ain’t really switched up for them. It’s not really going that bad for you. If you feel like you’re the under-represented, under-appreciated side of Middle America that is white—quote me—you need to, uh, toughen up, n—a! Somebody gotta punch you in the chest, because s–t is sweet for you. You know what I’m saying? I would say to everybody, you know, the world is coming together. Like there’s—every day people are becoming more and more, I’m not using this word in terms of emotion, but sensitive to real issues and— And aware. That’s really what I mean. People are raising their kids to be more and more knowledgeable and understanding. I would say the main reason not to be afraid is that I’m making music for your kids now. I’m coming so clean-cut with the message of hope and understanding, and the Word, that it’s like: What could you be fearful of?