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Chance the Journalist: Inside Chano’s purchase of The Chicagoist

After hyping fans of a new album dropping this week only to later backtrack that it’ll not be this week, Chance the Rapper dropped four new songs on SoundCloud wherein which he announced that he has purchased the Chicagoist, a Chicago news site most recently owned by WNYC.

“I bought the Chicagoist just to run you racist bitches out of business,” Chance raps in the lead-off track “I Might Need Security”.

“I’m extremely excited to be continuing the work of the Chicagoist, an integral local platform for Chicago news, events, and entertainment,” Chano later said in a statement through WNYC.

He said that his focus on relaunching the site would be to bring Chicagoans “an independent media outlet focused on amplifying diverse voices and content.”

The Chicagoist, which is a part of the Gothamist family of websites, has been idle since last December when billionaire Joe Ricketts decided to close the website after unionization efforts in the New York offices of Gothamist and DNAinfo led to the termination of local websites in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington.

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Now, with Chance at the helm, the Chicago chapter (Chicagoist) has the opportunity not only to live again but to bring a new perspective.

Chief executive of New York Public Radio (which includes WNYC) Laura Walker, said in a statement to the New York Times, “We are delighted that the Chicagoist assets are finding a new home in the hands of a proud Chicagoan.”

You don’t have to be a fan of Chance to have heard of his activism or heart for Chicago. His donations to the Chicago Public School system are generous and regular, he led a march to the polls for the Presidential election back in 2014 and even goes to city council meetings to make his voice heard. Reviving a publication for the sake of diverse voices is right on par for the kid Chance.

Chance now has the opportunity to groom a generation of journalists of color and although he has absolutely no experience, his influence alone is destined to shake up the playing field.

Chance released three tracks – “Work Out,” “65th & Ingleside” and “Wala Cam” – which are all available on the rapper’s website and streaming services.

In the meanwhile, although initially saying we’ll be receiving an album this week, we’re going to have to wait after he backtracked his original promise on Twitter.

Until then, these four tracks are going to have to hold us over.