Brow Beat

Chance the Rapper Escalates Beef With Chicago-Based Media by Buying His Own Local News Site

“I bought the Chicagoist just to run you racist bitches out of business,” he announced in a new single.

Chance the Rapper sits behind a micophone, adjusting his cap, which has the number 3 on it.
Chance the Media Mogul?
Jim Young/Getty Images

Chance the Rapper is breaking into the local media game, and his market of choice is—you guessed it—Chicago. After some will-he-or-won’t-he teasing earlier this week, the artist surprise-dropped four new singles at midnight, including “I Might Need Security,” in which he announces that he has purchased local news site Chicagoist. (The song has a hook that repeats the phrase “Fuck you” over and over again, so consider yourself warned that the video below is NSFW.)

Chance airs several grievances on the song, including calling for Rahm Emanuel, who once walked out of Chance’s speech at a City Council meeting, to resign. He also has beef with several Chicago-based media outlets: He takes a shot at a column in the Chicago Sun-Times from last year that brought up a child-support dispute between Chance and the mother of his daughter after Chance donated $1 million to Chicago Public Schools. He also seems to criticize Crain’s Chicago Business for reporting that he bought a condo.

And I can’t do nothing right, they gon’ always be at me

I missed a Crain’s interview, they tried leaking my addy

I donate to the schools next, they call me a deadbeat daddy

But Sun-Times get in that Rauner business

I got a hit-list so long I don’t know how to finish

I bought the Chicagoist just to run you racist bitches out of business

Sure enough, that last line is not just witty lyricism; the rapper really did pull a Charles Foster Kane and buy Chicagoist. The outlet was shut down last year when TD Ameritrade founder Joe Ricketts pulled the plug on DNAinfo, Gothamist, and sister sites after their staff voted to unionize. Those sites were then acquired by WNYC and other public radio stations—and now, by Chance.

“I’m extremely excited to be continuing the work of the Chicagoist, an integral local platform for Chicago news, events and entertainment,” Chance said in a statement about the acquisition. “WNYC’s commitment to finding homes for the -ist brands, including Chicagoist, was an essential part of continuing the legacy and integrity of the site. I look forward to re-launching it and bringing the people of Chicago an independent media outlet focused on amplifying diverse voices and content.” WNYC confirmed the news.

Chance also dropped three other singles: “65th & Ingleside,” “Work Out,” and “Wala Cam,” which you can listen to, below.