Chance The Rapper released Coloring Book, his third mixtape, way back in May of 2016. A lot of artists would have rushed out a quick follow-up to capitalize on the considerable momentum from that project, which rocketed Chance into the mainstream and won him a Grammy for Best New Artist. Instead Chance has moved at his own pace: hopping on other people’s tracks from time to time, releasing the occasional multi-song SoundCloud drop, investing in civic and family life. He’s talked about releasing full-length projects with Kanye West and Childish Gambino, but we haven’t heard any of that music. And one time last summer when he seemed to announce a new LP, it turned out to be a false alarm.
Now, though, he really is getting ready to unveil a big project. All year Chance and his circle of collaborators have been tweeting about his official debut “Owbum,” and in February he specified it would be out in July. As of today you can even pre-order it, though he hasn’t revealed anything else about it yet: no title, no tracklist, no cover art, no release date beyond “July.” Still, the machinery is in motion! There’s also an option to pre-order a digital copy of the album along with early access to a world tour Chance has yet to detail, and he’s selling $10 raffle tickets for charity: “ENTER FOR A CHANCE TO GET ACCESS TO EXCLUSIVE CHANCE THE RAPPER FAN EXPERIENCES + PRIZES. ALL PROCEEDS GO TO SOCIAL WORKS.”
Another promising sign: Chance’s first two mixtapes, 10 Day and Acid Rap, are now on the various streaming services after years of being available only on SoundCloud. (Notably, Acid Rap highlight “Juice” has been replaced with a message from Chance explaining that he couldn’t get the song cleared and he’s donating his streaming proceeds to Social Works.) Furthermore, he’s releasing those projects as well as Coloring Book on vinyl for the first time in addition to various bits of merch associated with each release. According to the pre-order pages in Chance’s online shop, the vinyl will ship this fall.
By then, we will be well acquainted with Chance’s official debut. Get hype!