Chief Keef was born Keith Farrelle Cozart in Chicago, Illinois when his mother, Lolita Carter, 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 Cozart is a member. Cozart has been estranged from his biological father, Alfonso Cozart; since he was a minor. Cozart's legal guardian was his grandmother, whom he lived with during his residence in Chicago. He began rapping at a very young age, regularly listed as a 5-year-old, using his mother's karaoke machine and blank tapes to record his music. During his childhood, Keef attended Dulles Elementary School and the Banner School, a therapeutic day school. Keef dropped out of Dyett High School at age 15.