Born in 1983, Chance the Rapper made his name in the industry with his mixtape 10 Day in 2012. His third mixtape “Coloring Book” won him three Grammy awards and was named as the best rap album of 2016. Ever since then, Chance’s rise in the industry has been meteoric and he has attracted a very niche fanbase in the industry. Apart from his solo career, he is also the lead vocalist of the band the Social Experiment and a member of the group Savemoney. Sunday Candy is a song that is produced by that very band.
What does the Title mean?
The title Sunday Candy simply means the candies that Chance’s grandmother would offer to the children who would come to the Church as reward. Chance remembers from his childhood that his grandmother used to do so to encourage children to come to Church. On the other hand, it could also mean the pleasure of seeing and being with his grandma on Sundays. If we take Jamila’s vocals into the account, this title can also be interpreted and uncovered for sexual themes.
Verse 1 – What does it mean?
“She can say in her voice, in her way that she love me
With her eyes, with her smile
With her belt, with her hands, with her money
I am the thesis of her prayers
Her nieces and her nephews are just pieces of the layers
Only ones she love as much as me is Jesus Christ and Taylor
I got a future so I’m singing for my grandma
You singing too, but your grandma ain’t my grandma
Mine’s is handmade, pan-fried, sun-dried
Southside, and beat the devil by a landslide
Praying with her hands tied, president of my fan club, saying to her
Something told me I should bring my butt to church”
As mentioned before, the whole song can be interpreted in two ways. However, it’s mostly about the love of a grandmother. In Afro-American culture, the role has always been of importance. Due to the ghettoization of black communities, Afro-American families have always been closely-knit. In fact, a lot of people from the Afro-American community have been brought up by their grandparents. Apart from that, the love of a grandmother is unparalleled. Even in popular culture, it’s often seen that grandmothers tend to spoil their grandchildren with love. In the first four lines, Chance reveals that no matter what his grandmother does, he always sees it coming from a place of love. For instance, he can see her love for him in her voice and even in her disciplinarian actions (belt), or how she spoils him by giving him money. The word “thesis” means a statement that summarizes a lot of critical information. Here, Chance means to say that all of his grandmother’s prayers are about his well-being in the end. His grandmother loves him and his little brother Taylor as much as Jesus Christ. Thus, in a way, her love for them is so pure, it’s almost divine.
Chance then goes on to compare his grandma with the grandmas of listeners. In a negative sense, he ends up saying here that he’s rich and can take care of his grandma very well as he’s got a good future or feature (both hint at his financial well-being). On the other hand, the grandmas of the listeners are not in the same position as Chance’s grandma. If one were to interpret this statement positively, Chance could be saying here that for him, his grandma is a person whom he considers above every human being. Of course, we all have unique relationships with our grandmothers, and their love for us cannot be generalized. In the end, no grandma is like any other grandma. Each one is unique and their relationship with their grandchildren is as subjective as it can get.
Chance then goes on to refer to the handmade pancakes that his grandma makes. It’s common knowledge that grandmas around the world tend to spoil their grandchildren by making a lot of delicious food. In popular culture, this is considered to be their expression of love for their grandchildren. This may be a stereotype but there is a lot of truth to it. In the last two lines, we get to know that Chance’s grandma prays for him regularly, and then he thinks about going to Church. From the words that he uses, it appears as if his grandma was strict about him going to Church in his childhood.
What does the Chorus mean?
“You gotta move it slowly
Take and eat my body like it’s holy
I’ve been waiting for you for the whole week
I’ve been praying for you, you’re my Sunday candy
You gotta move slowly
Take and eat my body like it’s holy
I’ve been waiting for you for this whole week
I’ve been praying for you, you’re my Sunday candy”
Quite a few of Christians celebrate the communion on Sunday. On that day, they eat a piece of bread that is representative of the body of Christ. They also drink wine that is representative of Christ’s blood. The Chorus here refers to that. However, Jamila Woods also gives it a sexual undertone by adding the line about moving the body slowly. The sexual and the religious are tangled in this chorus. One can conclude that the love that Jamila wants from her lover is spiritual. Thus, she’s looking for her “Sunday Candy” – a sexual as well as religious reference. Many people tend to go to Church on Sunday, and others go out to celebrate as it is a holiday. Jamila combines the pleasure with spirituality. She’s waiting for her religious lover to be with her on Sunday.
What does the Bridge mean?
“Come on in this house, cause it’s gonna rain
Rain down Zion, it’s gonna rain
You better come on in this house, cause it’s gonna rain
Rain down Zion, it’s gonna rain”
The reference to the rain comes from the story of Noah’s ark and how a warning appears in Genesis 6 that a flood will cleanse the Earth of evil. This flood was made possible by the continuous rain, according to Christian mythology. Thus, Noah’s ark is being referred to as “house” here. Chance’s grandmas house too can be seen as Noah’s ark as she is depicted as righteous and loving. Thus, for Chance to be saved from the evils of this world, he frequently has to return to his Grandma’s house.
Verse 2 – What does it mean?
“I come to church for the candy, your peppermints is the truth
I’m pessimistic on Monday if I had tweaked and missed you
You look so good with that hat on, had to match with the shoes
Came and dressed in the satin, I came and sat in your pew
I come to Christmas for dinner, fifty rolls on my plate
Hella holes in my stocking holding your pockets in place
I like my love with a budget, I like my hugs with a scent
You smell like light, gas, water, electricity, rent
You sound like why the gospel choir got so tired
Singin’ his praises daily basis so I gotta try it
You’re my dreamcatcher, dream team, team captain
Matter fact, I ain’t seen you in a minute
Let me take my butt to church”
In the first two lines, Chance confirms for us that his grandmother would bring him to Church by giving him candies. But later on, he realizes how important was it for him to come to Church. It not only became a support, but his bond with his grandma got stronger by him coming to Church. In the middle of this verse, he remembers how good his Grandma looks during Sundays. Many Christians dress really well for Church on Sundays. He also mentions that his grandma represents stability – light, gas, water, electricity. He also refers to the poverty with the word “hella holes”. He also mentions that it was his grandmother who supported him in pursuing his dream. The Afro-American community due to them being oppressed for years has not been exactly stable. Yet, Chance’s grandmother defies all of that. In the end, due to his love for his grandmother, he decides to drag himself back to Church.
All in all, it’s an amazing song about a grandchild’s love for his grandmother. In the Afro-American community, this love is even stronger due to the harsh conditions that arise from social evils such as racism and discrimination. In fact, Chance’s grandma becomes a guiding light in his life, and that’s what this song is all about.