Celebrity Then And Now
Chance The Rapper
Name: Chance The Rapper
Birthdate: January 1, 1970
Famous Years: 2012 - Present
Currently Known For: Continued Rap Career
Networth: $9 MillionFamous For: "No Problem," "Cocoa Butter Kisses," "Juke Jam"
Chance The Rapper
Name Chance The Rapper
Birthdate January 1, 1970
Famous Years 2012 - Present
Currently Known For Continued Rap Career
Networth $9 Million
Famous For "No Problem," "Cocoa Butter Kisses," "Juke Jam"

Rappers come up with a lot of creative names for when they take the stage, but Chancelor Bennett went with something a little more in-your-face. Simply known as Chance the Rapper, the Chicago-born artist has stormed into the scene over the past few years to become one of the biggest names in music.

Chance was born on April 16, 1993 to a family that had been what most would consider to be your normal American family. Both of his parents had been involved in politics while he was growing up, with his father working for Barack Obama before he became U.S. President. Chance grew up idolizing the likes of Michael Jackson and fellow Chicagoan Kanye West, whose music got him into hip hop.

Before he was even a teenager, Chance started rapping in his cousin’s studio and then started performing while in high school. It was during this time that Chance worked on his first mixtape called “10 Day” that gained him instant notoriety for being one of the up and coming talents in his home city.

The big moment for Chance’s career would come when he appeared in a 2012 song with Childish Gambino (Donald Glover), getting his name into the mainstream a little further. Then, in 2013, he released his mixtape “Acid Rap” that included some well known rappers singing along with him.

20 year olds breaking onto the Billboard charts isn’t anything new, but they typically tend to be signed to a label, and are usually parts of a pop act. That wasn’t the case for Chance, who was 20 when his mixtape “Acid Rap” had been downloaded illegally so many times that he made his way to the charts. This represented a huge turning point in Chance’s career.

“I got nominated for a BET Hip Hop Award for Best Mixtape of the Year (for “Acid Rap”). That’s the craziest thing that’s ever happened to me in my life,” he said. “That came out of nowhere. It was kind of a free mixtape, but it was kind of an album...I was trying to prove a point and it was really cool that even after putting it out as a mixtape it moved enough units - illegally, nothing from my camp, not with my permission - to chart.”

Following the success of his mixtape, Chance started going on tour as there was suddenly a much bigger fanbase. His second major release would come in 2015 when he released the album “Surf” that was critically received as well as “Acid Rain”, continuing his hot streak. Then Chance got to live out his dream of working with Kanye West, helping him to write several tracks while also singing on “The Life of Pablo” album.

Another mixtape was in the works for Chance during this time, who released “Coloring Book” in 2016, which was his most recently finished album. Critically, the album would be Chance’s best to date as he won the Grammy Award for Best Rap Album. In the same year, he would also win the awards for Best New Artist and Best Rap Performance for “No Problem” with Lil’ Wayne and 2 Chainz, and he’s now working on what’s technically going to be his debut album.

Chance is also focusing on being a father to his daughter Kensli, with his now-fiancee Kirsten Corley. “It’s a lot to try and be a good dad right now,” he said. “With all the distractions and all the things that I’m limited in doing by living in Chicago and being a person of notoriety...I want my relationship with Kensli down pat and also just get older.”

One thing you’ll know when talking to Chance is the fact that he’s laid-back compared to many rappers, and doesn’t buy into the celebrity status. That means you’re not likely to see him involved in any wars of words with other rappers. “I don’t see it ever happening,” he said. “You know, I take my raps so seriously that I don’t write raps without having a purpose for them anymore...I can’t see myself ever having somebody say something about me on a song and me being like, ‘All right, now I’m about to say something about them in a song.

Self-admittedly, Chance isn’t the best with his money, and being an independent rapper has had its drawbacks in terms of sales. With his breakthrough album being downloaded mostly illegally, Chance has said that he’s likely to sell his future albums. “I can chart, but the way they have the streaming set up is weak. It’s unfair. 1,500 streams is the equivalent to one (album sale) and that’s just unfair.” He added that “I want to make something that’s got a wider scope,” as he continues his career.

At only 25 years old, Chance is certain to change his style many times throughout his rap career. He’s been able to make it this far without the backing of a major record label, which is nothing short of incredible. At this point, Chance is a brand all on his own that only figures to be a major player in rap for years to come.