Chief Keef was born Keith Farrelle Cozart in Chicago, Illinois, to Lolita Carter who was 16 and unwed. He is named after his deceased uncle, Keith Carter, who was known as "Big Keef. " He lived at the Parkway Garden Homes, locally known as O-Block, located in the Washington Park neighborhood on the city's South Side, a stronghold for the Black Disciples street gang of which Chief Keef is a member. Chief Keef has been estranged from his biological father, Alfonso Cozart, since he was a minor. His legal guardian was his grandmother with whom he lived in Chicago. He began rapping as a 5-year-old using his mother's karaoke machine and tapes to record his music. During his childhood, Chief Keef attended Dulles Elementary School and the Banner School, a therapeutic day school. He dropped out of Dyett High School at age 15.