Named as “One of 5 Top Gospel Artists to Watch” by Essence Magazine, Aaron Cole’s music journey started when he began rapping at just three years old. After dropping six independent projects, the Bristol, VA native was introduced to multi-GRAMMY-award winning producer and artist TobyMac, who took him under his wing. Cole caught the attention of critics and music fans alike back in 2017 when he garnered two back-to-back #1 singles on the Billboard HOT AC chart. This summer, on August 30, the 20-year-old will release his first full-length album with Gotee, titled NOT BY CHANCE that will feature 13 dynamic hip-hop tracks appealing to fans of Jon Bellion and Drake. The record was produced by Chino and Chris King along with fellow rapper and former Capital Kings member, Cole Walowac who recently produced seven songs on NF’s latest album The Search. Together, they created a masterpiece that infuses pop, hip-hop, and soul together to tell his authentic story of growing up in poverty, working hard for your dreams, and standing tall in your faith. NOT BY CHANCE features special collaborations including Derek Minor, 1K Phew, Chastity, Evan Ford, Kaleb Mitchell, and Montell Fish. Aaron recently took a few minutes to talk with us about the message behind his new collection.
Last time we chatted you were getting ready to head out on the Hits Deep Tour in late January. What was that experience like?
It was great. Met a lot of cool people and learned a lot of lessons.
You will be releasing new music, Not By Chance, later this month. How does this title reflect the album as a whole?
'Not By Chance' has three meanings: Not By Chance that I have made it to where I’m at in my career. It took a lot of hard work and sacrifices. It’s Not By Chance that God made us who we are. A lot of times I’m learning that I’ve been set apart and feel left out of a lot of things but I’m learning that that’s not just by chance. And last but not least Not By Chance By his Grace.
With this being your first full-length album, how do you define success for this record?
The impact to be bigger than I imagined. That’s all I ask for. I want it to impact people to grow and inspire them to go after whatever God has for them.
Which track are you most looking forward for listeners to hear?
"Love Don’t Cost A Thing". It really shows a lot of where I was at last year.
What is the one key takeaway message you hope listeners leave with after hearing Not By Chance?
That it’s okay to be who you are. And it’s okay to go after all of your dreams no matter who doesn’t believe you. And God is amazing.
What are you most looking forward to the rest of this year after the release of your record?
Making more music.