Chance The Rapper Opens Up About Past Drug Use; Says He Could've “Died” From Drugs

The Chicago rapper is reflecting on his Billboard-charting 2013 mixtape 'Acid Rap' and his drug use during that time.

Chance the Rapper is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the release of what is arguably his best project, Acid Rap. The 2013 critically-acclaimed mixtape was released as a free project; it still debuted at number 63 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.

The mixtape featured appearances by Ab-Soul, BJ the Chicago Kid, and Twista. In 2016, then-President Barack Obama added the track "Acid Rain," to his summer playlist.

Chance has shared that while the project was one of his most successful, it is also one that could have killed him. “I think if I hadn’t had my spirit tugged on, literally, and a calling to become a better version of myself, then I would’ve died,” Chance told Complex. “I would just be the representative of acid, and I’m so much more.”

Chance is gearing up to honor the project through a series of live events, pop-ups, merch drops, and special music releases. He will also headline an Acid Rap Ten Year Anniversary Show on August 19, produced by Live Nation at Chicago’s United Center. Rapper and record producer Saba will be the show opener.

Related: Chance The Rapper’s ‘Acid Rap’ 10th Anniversary Show Details Announced

He told Complex that he hopes that fans of the project have also reflected on and grown in their lives. “I feel like that’s what Acid Rap is,” Chance says now. “It’s a whole bunch of questions and as time goes on, you find some of those answers.”

Chance is also clearing up rumors around the creation of the project, noting that while the mixtape is named Acid Rap, he was not on acid during the majority of the recording process, and he stopped using the drug just a month after its release.

In the interview, he talks about the realizations that led to quitting the drug, "I was like, “I’m done with this” after too many bad trips and just weird shit happening to me. But I had to deal with it for the next year and a half. Having everybody that met me trying to either offer me acid or ask me interview questions about acid and having to be basically the spokesperson for drugs. But I had to come to myself and realize and remember that I was not making those songs off acid. I may have found some beats I liked off of acid, but it was me making the songs. And I think that was probably the key thing that I learned from that experience. It was like, you could dress up something to be one thing and draw inspiration from one thing but it doesn’t necessarily mean that that’s the main ingredient to it."

Chance has come a long way since Acid Rap, he is currently the first rapper to be a coach on NBC's The Voice which is in Season 23.

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