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Chance the Rapper covers Stevie Wonder, reads poetry for NPR Tiny Desk Concert: Watch

on July 05, 2017, 10:13am

Leave it to Chance the Rapper to take something that’s already unique and find a way to make it distinct in his own way. The Chicago rapper recently dropped by the NPR offices for a Tiny Desk Concert and delivered a three-part set filled with surprises.

Backed by The Social Experiment members Nico Segal, Peter Cottontale, and Stix, plus a quartet of singers, Chance opened with a mellowed version of “Juke Jams” off Coloring Book. After shouting out former Tiny Desk performers Tank and the Bangas and Gregory Porter, he then read an original poem he’d written just that morning called “The Other Side”. “I still have all the keys that are of no use to me,” went the opening stanza. “They used to, though. On the other side was a mansion on a hill, complete with LA pools and fireplaces and a rim made specifically for people that lie about being six feet to dunk on.” An announcement over the office’s PA system interrupted him, but he took it in stride and simply started again.

To cap it all off, Chance and the band covered Stevie Wonder’s 1974 track “They Won’t Go When I Go”. Throughout the whole thing, the MC showed a sincere respect and admiration for the NPR concert series, which led to a warm, relaxed performance. Check it out in the video above.