Chance The Rapper: ‘Acid Rap 10 Year Anniversary Show’ Lights Up Chicago

Photos: Tito Garcia

Ten years after releasing his highly acclaimed mixtape, “Acid Rap,” Chance The Rapper kicked off the first of a three-concert series in his hometown, Saturday night.

Thousands of people lined up outside the United Center, anxiously waiting for the doors to open. The sold-out show brought together 20,000 Chance supporters dressed in new and throwback Chance merch, excited and eager for the surprises in store.

Things kicked off with SABA of Pivot Gang performing hits such as “Siren” and “2012.”

Next, DJ Oreo hit the stage and brought a few friends along. Chicago artists and performers such as King Louie, Mello Buckzz, D Low, the South Shore Drill Team, Benny the Bull of the Chicago Bulls and Tommy Hawk of the Black Hawks helped get the crowd charged and ready ahead of the main event.

The energy inside the arena felt like a pulse of Chicago pride beating through the heart of the city as the audience anxiously awaited for Chance to hit the stage.

The Man, the Moment, the Main Event

Chance The Rapper giving the crowd what they need at his Acid Rap 10 Year Anniversary Show at the United Center (Photo, Tito Garcia).

Opening with hits from his project, Coloring Book, “No Problem,” “All Night” and “Blessings,” it was sure that the audience was in for something special.

About five songs in, following the brilliant color displays, fireworks, lights, soul-stirring vocals and a live band, Chance stood at the front of the stage in complete darkness with only himself in the spotlight as the crowd’s roar poured on top of him as he caught his breath.

He was where he was supposed to be.

There was no better city for him to initiate the “Acid Rap” celebration. Since dropping his first project, “10 Day,” on April 3, 2012, Chance has developed a deep and loyal fanbase of individuals who have been rooting for him from the beginning.

Nearly a year later, on April 30, 2013, he released “Acid Rap,” which featured artists such as Vic Mensa, Noname, Childish Gambino, BJ The Chicago Kid, Ab-Soul and several others. Initially, the project landed at No.63 on Billboard’s US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. However, following its re-release on streaming platforms in 2019, it peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard 200.

“This is a really important show for me for a lot of reasons. It is the first time my daughters see me perform, [and] it’s been four years since performing at the United Center,” said Chance. “[I’ll be] performing songs from a very important part of my life.”

“It’s a reason I don’t perform a lot of these songs, and it’s because it’s not a sad thing, but that part of my life is over… we’ve all grown and changed since that time, and I can look back on it in an excited way because it brought so much to me.”

The audience’s range in age, gender and race was a true depiction of “Acid Rap’s” reach and overall impact on the culture. From grammar school students and high schoolers to millennials, who may have been in college when the project dropped, everyone seemed to have a special relationship with “Acid Rap.” And it was beautiful to see everyone in one space to share the experience.

“This is a really important show for me for a lot of reasons. It is the first time my daughters see me perform, and it’s been four years since performing at the United Center.” – Chance

Performing classic fan favorites such as “Everybody’s Something,” “Pusha Man,” “Chain Smoker,” “Favorite Song,” “Juice” and of course, “Cocoa Butter Kisses,” fans sang along at the top of their lungs, feeding off each song as if it was a satisfying craving ten years in the making.

Colorful and luminescent imagery flashed across a giant screen, taking the audience on a lucid and trippy visual experience, emphasizing the distinct tone of the era. Special guest appearances from SABA, Noname, Vic Mensa and Twista made the night even more special and was a true nod to Chicago music and culture.

This concert was a beautiful display of Chance’s growth, maturity and elevation over the past decade. He also announced the title of his upcoming project, “Starline,” before performing one of his latest singles, “The Highs & The Lows.”

Last Song of the Night

Before performing what was supposed to be the last song of the night, Chance’s family — his parents, brother Taylor Bennett and two daughters — surprised him on stage with an incredibly insane amount of flowers and heartwarming remarks from his father.

Full of emotion and taking in the moment, Chance stepped to the mic but could not perform the last song. Instead, he thanked the crowd for an amazing night.

“I appreciate all of y’all, and everybody in this room impacted my life whether you know it or not,” he said, “I appreciate you for coming out. I appreciate you for pulling up.”

Chicago was the first stop of the “Acid Rap 10 Year Anniversary Show.”

The celebration continues with upcoming shows in New York (August 26) and Los Angeles (September 21). For tickets and more information, visit

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