Depending on who’s talking, Keith “Chief Keef” Cozart is either a musical genius, or a dangerous thug. When the 22-year-old rapper, producer, label owner, and designer from Chicago’s South Side started gaining notoriety in 2011 on the strength of his mixtapes and singles including “I Don’t Like” and “Love Sosa,” he seemed to embrace the nihilistic violence of his troubled hometown. Even as he started a 2012 label bidding war that landed him at Interscope Records to release his debut studio album, Finally Rich, Keef was facing criminal charges for assault with a firearm. The dark side of Chicago, which he captured in his genre-pushing tracks, was threatening to take him under.
Following the shooting deaths of his cousin and stepbrother, and his eviction from his Highland Park home, Keef moved west to L.A., where he’s reportedly found a measure of peace, and inspiration to do more with his talent and position. Now signed to Gucci Mane’s 1017 Brick Squad Records, he’s preparing to release his fourth studio album, The Dedication, in November.
On the latest episode of GGN, Chief Keef drops by the studio to talk with Uncle Snoop, who can relate to both having your gangster music blamed for violence that predated it, and the struggle to stay out of the streets after achieving success. Join the conversation as they talk about what Keef loves most about Chicago, the true origins of “drill” music, collabing with Kanye, why ice cream is still “the shit,” and much more.
You’ll probably get a contact high just from watching these two burn down Backwoods, so go ahead and peep all the action now.