It’s a rare day when anyone sees Chance The Rapper without his infamous “3” hat. After all, the Chicago-bred artist has a seemingly endless supply in a rainbow of colors. But it turns out the hats weren’t just a fashion statement, they were also a lucrative endeavor for Lil Chano.
In a resurfaced 2018 interview with Joe Budden, Chance revealed he’s already made over $6 million from selling the signature New Era hat.
“This hat been paid for college, been paid for braces, been paid for ballet classes, been paid for debate classes, been paid for swim lessons,” he said pointing to his blue and pink “3” hat he was wearing at the time. “I made $6 million in one year off these hats. I’m buying these hats for close to $3.”
“I used to always rock a cap when I was in high school and get them taken away,” he said. “It was an excessive amount. Like, so often that at the end of each school year, there would be a box of all the confiscated caps. After they gave back a few caps to other kids, they would just give me the box because the rest were all my hats. So I think, in one part, it’s a rebellion.”
Chano then revealed what the “3” symbolized — 2016’s Grammy Award-winning mixtape Coloring Book, his third studio effort and HipHopDX’s 2016 Album of the Year.
“I wanted to put something else on the hat. And so I decided to do ‘3,’” he said. “I just thought that that made the most sense because it was the third project. Also, I was having a lot of trouble figuring out what the title of the project was going to be and what typography to put the title in. The original title for the project was, uh, The Magnificent Coloring Book. But that’s just so many words and it looks so shitty, no matter how I put it on the hat.”
Find the “3” hats on Chance The Rapper’s official website here.