ENGLEWOOD — Chicago’s most notorious teenage rapper certainly has something to celebrate when he turns 18 on Thursday.
Chief Keef’s official entrance into adulthood marks the end of court-control of most of his record contract cash.
In January, DNAinfo.com Chicago was first to report details of Chief Keef’s deal with Interscope Records — the label of rappers Dr. Dre, Eminem and 50 Cent — that could pay the South Side rapper more than $6 million over three years.
Because Chief Keef was a minor when he inked that deal, state law required Interscope Records to deposit the bulk of the rapper’s advance — about $500,000 — into a court-administered trust fund on his behalf, according to court papers.
That cash had been held in so-called “blocked trust” controlled by his legal guardian — his grandmother, Margaret Carter — until the rapper, born Keith Cozart, turned 18.
On Wednesday, Chief Keef’s outspoken “Granny” told DNAinfo.com Chicago she’s proud that her gangster-rap grandson — whose unexpected rise to fame was tainted by repeated run-ins with police that included a 60-day stint in juvenile jail for violating probation after pointing a gun at a cop — made it to manhood.
“Oh, I’m happy. Proud. Sometimes we gotta let kids hit their own brick wall. Can’t tell these kids nothing,” Carter said. “But he’s learned a lot. He’s become much more mature than he was. He’s changed.”
Carter, a school bus driver, said she gave Chief Keef some advice when she saw him Saturday at a family party celebrating her 64th birthday.
“I told him to keep doing good things and moving forward,” she said. "I say, 'Be a man. Be the man that you are … and show off some of the stuff that Granny taught you.' "
On Thursday, Chief Keef is expected to release his much anticipated mixtape “Bang 2.”
The mixtape includes songs that celebrate his release from juvy jail, “First Day Out,” allegiance to the Black Disciples street gang “O Block 4 Life," threats to gang rivals in "F--- Yo Block,” and newfound wealth in “I Got Cash.”
Carter said she hasn’t heard the album yet, but she plans to give it a listen Thursday when she hopes to spend some time quality with her grandson.
“I’m not just going to sing happy birthday to him, I’m going to go be with him,” she said. “You know, I have a friend who said, ‘I saw your grandson in the paper, and when I met him for the first time he was a good kid.’ I tell them don’t believe the media, they’re just lying. Keith is going to be great. He’s a fine young man.”
And now, an even richer one.