7 reasons why Chance the Rapper is a star

Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder is a fan, and so are millions of others.

Not that the hottest young indie rapper in the land needs any validation from a middle-aged mainstream rock star, but what Eddie Vedder said about Chance the Rapper last month spoke volumes about the far-reaching good vibes the Chicago star is giving off.

Sasquatch! 2017

Fans cheer as Digable Planets perform at the Sasquatch Music Festival on Saturday, May 28, 2016, in Quincy. (Johnny Andrews / The Seattle Times)

“If somehow Chance the Rapper ever sees or hears this, I just want to tell him my daughter, Olivia, loves you,” Vedder said at the podium as his band, Pearl Jam, was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. “I also, Chance, want to thank you for all the great work you’re doing in Chicago. That’s the kind of music activism that gives us all hope.”

Probably more than President Barack Obama’s prior praise of the real-life Chancelor Bennett, Vedder’s comments show how respected and prevalent the 24-year-old rapper has become in Middle America. Tickets have sold out for many of the shows on his first-ever arena tour, which began two weeks ago. Chance headlines Sasquatch! festival on Sunday, May 28.

Those impressive ticket sales came as a surprise to many. Chance’s ascent has gone somewhat unnoticed in mainstream circles because most of his success as a recording artist has been through streaming, not album sales.

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In fact, Chance only just landed his first No. 1 on Billboard recently, and it wasn’t even for his own song. It’s from his guest appearance alongside Justin Bieber and Lil Wayne on the DJ Khaled single “I’m the One” (a rather inane track that hardly does justice to his talent). He also prominently won three Grammy Awards in February, including best new artist, but he was arguably a glaring omission in the major categories.

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