Chance the Rapper has entered the news business by buying the Chicagoist website — and announced the purchase through song Thursday.
Chicagoist was part of a network of city-oriented websites including New York’s Gothamist that found a following amid an appetite for a fresher, younger take on local news in the United States.
The sites were abruptly closed last year by publisher Joe Ricketts, a conservative mogul who also owns the Chicago Cubs baseball team, after staff voted to unionize.
New York public radio station WNYC later acquired Gothamist and affiliated sites and confirmed Thursday that Chance, the increasingly prominent 25-year-old rapper, had bought the assets of Chicagoist.
“I look forward to relaunching it and bringing the people of Chicago an independent media outlet focused on amplifying diverse voices and content,” Chance said in a statement.
The rapper expressed his intentions quite differently when he broke the news in a song, “I Might Need Security.”
“I bought the Chicagoist just to run you racist bitches out of business,” he rapped on the song, one of four he released on Thursday.
On the track, whose chorus is a melodious rendering of the F-word, Chance attacks Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel over police brutality.
“Rahm, you done! / I’m expectin’ resignation / An open investigation on all of these paid vacations for murderers,” he said, in apparent reference to police officers who are suspended rather than fired for misconduct.
Chance also took a shot at the Chicago Sun-Times, one of the city’s two daily English-language newspapers, for an unflattering article on his child support payments.
Chance, whose real name is Chancelor Bennett, has achieved striking success over the past two years despite defying industry convention by self-releasing all of his music.
The son of a Democratic political aide who worked for future president Barack Obama in Chicago, Chance has been outspoken about the state of the city.
Last year he donated $1 million for schools in the Midwestern metropolis amid a government funding crisis in a dispute with the Republican governor of Illinois, Bruce Rauner — whom Chance also lambasts in his new song.