Chance the Rapper‘s Coloring Book mixtape is a hot commodity, becoming the first streaming-exclusive set to chart in the Billboard 200. The Chicago rapper opened up about the sensational project during an interview with Beats 1’s Zane Lowe on Tuesday (May 24), where he discussed the recording process with Kanye West for “All We Got,” his views on labels and his decision to not sell his records.
He also revealed that he’s “turned off” from making new music at the moment, partially due to him being sick — the rapper was hospitalized last month for pneumonia. See the highlights and listen to the full interview below.
On Working with Kanye
?”…They bring out the MPC [Music Production Controller] almost like in the gold suitcase in Pulp Fiction. He records drums in a way I’ve never seen before he does everything live off the MPC. As it plays now the drums aren’t mixed separately, all the kicks all the hi-hat are the same level. He does it literally in one take from top to bottom, he just stands there and goes through it and plays all the drums that you hear on the track as you hear now. Less than five seconds after he does that one take through he goes through and freestyles over it.”
On What Makes His Native Chicago Special
“I think one, it’s a very cultured place. Chicago is a big city but it’s in the middle of Illinois and all of the suburban areas around us kind of create this wall of inclusive sound…And on top of that we’ve never had a music industry. I think because there was no industry or big labels posted there it gave everybody a lot of air to make what the f–k they wanted to make and bred a lot of awesome talent across all genres.”
On Record Labels and the Industry
“I don’t agree with the way labels are set up…that anybody should sign 360 deals or sign away their publishing or take most of the infrastructure that’s included in a formal deal. But I’ve learned to not be like f–k this company, f–k that company, even though a lot of those people tried to make it really hard for me to release my projects.”
On His Decision to Not Sell His Records and the Grammys
“I think a big part of it is we are at such a crucial time in terms of music. The charts are already changing, they’re including streaming…I don’t really care about that but at least they’re making that move and I think the Grammys started making the move…The wording is they can’t nominate a project unless it’s a commercial release.”
On Releasing Mixtapes
“Because of this timing, I think it was important to have these mixtapes be trilogized and be a thing that existed regardless of how the revolution goes. I know that I was not on the bus when everything was changing. I was like f–k it I’m still dropping mixtapes.”
And on What’s to Come Next
“Now whatever is next I don’t really know. I’m a little turned off from making music right this second cause I’m still sick and shit and I just did a whole project, but I know I did the three projects exactly how I wanted to and they were mixtapes and that’s where I came from.”