News of blue-eyed soul singer Bobby Caldwell’s death this morning was met by an outpouring of loving — and befuddled — messages online. While the former stemmed from the love audiences have for the lauded singer’s long-lasting hits like “What You Won’t Do For Love,” the latter were echoes of a semi-annual occurrence in which longtime listeners learned his ethnic background — a phenomenon of which the man himself never seemed to tire.
Then, there were the more personal messages. Chance The Rapper offered one of those on Instagram, fondly recalling a time the singer reached out to thank him for sampling one of his songs. Caldwell, who was an active Twitter user and enjoyed responding to messages from fans astonished to discover that he wasn’t Black, graciously told Chance that he’d be “honored” if Chance sampled the song.
Chance himself commented on how rare of an occurrence this is in the caption, writing, “This never happens. I’ve never received a message from an artist thanking me for sampling their record. This is a record that hasn’t even come out, and the legend himself reached out. I was so excited to meet you, I have not felt broken like this at a strangers passing in so long. You are a true legend and incredible person who I know I will see one day.
Chance isn’t the first artist to sample from Caldwell; in fact, his extensive experience being sampled within hip-hop (and the songwriter’s royalties they brought him) likely contributed to his encouragement. While many target=”_blank” title=””>artists who’ve been sampled have reached out to block the use of their songs or sue rappers for using them, Bobby, whose songs were used by Common, The Notorious B.I.G., and Tupac, among others, always seemed happy to share his music with the hip-hop world. Here’s looking forward to hearing what Chance cooked up in the very near future.