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Jul 4, 2013
@ 1:38 pm
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Everybody dies in the summer

Chance the Rapper’s Acid Rap is an album that sounds especially made for summer. It’s airy and warm and energetic and joyous. It’s rap to play at cookouts or with the windows open or when you light a joint in the park. It’s also rap that specifically addresses summer, but that’s where it becomes particularly hard to swallow.

The most cited verse on the album is the second verse on "Paranoia," which itself is abutted to "Pusha Man." You probably know it: “Where the fuck is Matt Lauer at? Somebody get Katie Couric in here” etc. But Chance talks about Chicago summers on the next verse:

It just got warm out, this the shit I’ve been warned about
I hope that it storm in the morning, I hope it’s pouring out
I hate crowded beaches, I hate the sound of fireworks
And I ponder what’s worse between knowing it’s over and dying first
Cause everybody dies in the summer
Wanna say your goodbyes? Tell em while it’s spring
I heard everybody’s dying in the summer, so pray to god for a little more spring

I don’t think the juxtaposition — lyrics that ruminate on the darkness of Chicago summers cutting into this radiant album — is exactly intentional. It’s more just a reality for Chance. But the more I yearn to hear Acid Rap in the sun and the breeze, the heavier those lyrics weigh. As Chance tells it, kids on the South Side can’t approach summer — no matter its glory — without thinking about death. Acid Rap has the exact same effect.

On April 1, Chicago mayor Rahm Emmanuel and police superintendent Garry McCarthy held a press conference congratulating themselves for the city’s reduced murder rate in the first three months of 2013. It was 37 degrees that day. Today is July 4 — it’s 80 degrees in Chicago. In between, 133 people have been murdered in the city.

  1. ourownseparatesides reblogged this from jordansargent
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  3. supertaysonbros reblogged this from jordansargent and added:
    It’s only made more powerful by last year’s emergence of Chief Keef. Like that’s the evidence people outside of Chicago...
  4. burberrycologne reblogged this from jordansargent and added:
    Pertinent thoughts on how gun violence on the South Side robs kids of their summer. Something to keep in the back of the...
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  7. infectedworldmind reblogged this from prtejeda and added:
    Great post. Acid Rap’s one of my favorite hip-hop albums of the year so far.
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