Chance the Rapper tips hat to Janice Corley of RE/MAX Premier in a song

by Ashley Bowden

(left) Janice Corley; (right) Chance the Rapper performing; photo author: Julio Enriquez

In his latest album “The Big Day,” Chance the Rapper gives a shout out to his mother-in-law, Janice Corley, broker-owner of RE/MAX Premier Properties. In a verse of the song “Zanies and Fools,” the lyrics describe a nine-year-old Chance’s experience at a holiday party Corley threw for her RE/MAX office in 2002.

Chance the Rapper, born Chancelor Jonathan Bennett, is a South Side native known for being an independent artist and for his activism within the city he grew up in. In his acknowledgment to Corley, he explains how he came to meet her daughter — the woman he later married — thanks to the networking opportunity Corley’s party came to offer: “The lady had a plan, she knew it all in advance / The party was a good mixture of employees and friends / She told the people comin’ to make sure they bring their kids.”

Corley said the initial connection came about because because Chance’s mother was a RE/MAX agent affiliated with her office at the time. “I would hold holiday parties for the agents in my firm and invite their spouses and children,” she said. “Now it’s exciting to see the whole story told by Chance on his fabulous new album – but of course, I’m one of his biggest fans.”

The “kids” the rapper mentions refers to Corley’s daughters Kirsten and Krystal, as well as one more girl who performed a song by Destiny’s Child to entertain the party guests. “It’s ironic that the song the three girls were dancing to when Chance first saw Kirsten was from Destiny’s Child,” she added. “Her connection to Chance appears to be destiny itself. Even though we all went our separate ways over the next several years, somehow destiny always brought Kirsten and Chance back together.”

Kirsten was also nine years old at the time when the young Chance spotted her. The lyrics imply Chance was attracted to his future wife at first sight. “One on the left, I think I might like her / One on the left, I think I might love her… Everything will go right as it can / It’s possible,” the song continues.

Many real estate agents strive to connect people, and many of those connections prosper in unpredictable ways. Chance the Rapper married Kirsten Corley on December 27, 2018 after a longtime relationship blossomed from the RE/MAX party where they first met.

“As a mother and mother in law, it pleases me that this fairy tale has come true. Chance is a prince, and Kirsten is a princess — at least that is what I used to call her,” Corley said.

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