Chance the Rapper and Kirsten Corley

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‘Ooh I love my wife’: Old song resurfaces when Chance the Rapper splits from Kirsten Corley

'Maybe the wife we love was the friends we made from along the way.'


Eric Webb


Posted on Apr 4, 2024   Updated on Apr 4, 2024, 3:22 pm CDT

Chance the Rapper and his wife revealed Tuesday that they’ve parted ways. If the words “Chance the Rapper” and “wife” instantly evoked a certain melody in your head, you’re not alone, since the news spurred the resurgence of a 5-year-old meme song on social media.

Chance and wife Kirsten Corley announced their split on Tuesday via Instagram stories, which have since expired from the platform. According to a screenshot from People, the statement read: “After a period of separation, the two of us have decided to part ways. We came to this decision amicably and with gratitude for the time we spent together. God has blessed us with two beautiful daughters who we will continue to raise together. We kindly ask for privacy and respect as we navigate this transition.”

Chance, whose real name is Chancelor Bennett, and Corley married in March 2019. They have two daughters.

If you crawl around social media this week, you’ll find some variation of the words “I love my wife” popping up on content about the split. In the comments of a TikTok from comedian Joe Fenti (@fentifriedchicken), titled “Me after hearing Chance the Rapper is getting a divorce,” several viewers referenced the meme.

“Oooooo I love my wifeeee,” a comment read.

“What happened to: AHH I love my wife,” another comment read.

“Maybe the wife we love was the friends we made from along the way,” one person commented.

“Oooh i have no wiiife, i have no wife AH. i’ll never ride a biiike, with my wife AH,” another person commented.

“I was not aware of that meme, but it definitely makes sense that people caught on to it,” Fenti told the Daily Dot in an email interview Thursday. “I think it’s very easy to point out when celebrities go over the top to announce how much they love their wife (John Mulaney, Chance The Rapper, etc.) and how much of a sting it can be when the marriage doesn’t work out.”

So, how did this marriage become a meme? It goes back to July 2019, when Chance released The Big Day. Critics loved his previous mixtapes, like Acid Rap and Coloring Book, and fans held high expectations for the follow-up. 

Reaction to The Big Day was mixed, though. The album’s lyrics often dwelled on religion and effusive celebration about Chance and Corley’s marriage. Vice wrote that “this is his ‘Wife Guy’ LP.” Genius compiled a video detailing every time the rapper mentioned his wife on the album. The internet’s narrative coalesced: The album was widely viewed as corny, and Chance became known for talking about his marriage just as much as his trademark hats.

@fentifriedchicken If only we had access to a studio! #ChanceTheRapper ♬ original sound – Joe Fenti

“As a Chance The Rapper fan, I’m a little underwhelmed with how Chance’s music career has progressed since I first heard his music in 2013,” Fenti told the Dot. He praised the entertainer’s mixtapes, “but ‘The Big Day’ was a bit of a letdown in my opinion. I don’t ever find myself looking back to those songs, nor have I tried to keep up with Chance’s music afterward.”

Days after The Big Day dropped, creator Charlie Winsmore uploaded a video to YouTube titled, “Chance the Rapper – I Love My Wife (BONUS TRACK).” 

“I made this it’s a parody please do not sue,” the caption read.

The joke song featured Winsmore singing and rapping in an exaggerated take on Chance’s performance style. “Ooh I love my wife, I love my wife,” the lyrics went. “Let’s go ride a bike with my wife.” And so on, for 27 seconds. As of Thursday, Winsmore’s video had racked up more than 1.5 million views.

“I’d be crazy to say I even remotely anticipated it blowing up the way it did,” Winsmore told the Dot in an email interview on Thursday. “It was just funny to me at the time. I thought of the idea for it while walking home from the grocery store. When I posted it I thought it’d flop because it seemed so niche to me at the time. I still don’t even quite know how it started to snowball. In some ways it’s the most popular song from ‘The Big Day,’ and it wasn’t even on the album. But I almost feel dissociated from it now though, which is fine. I’ve never felt a desire for credit when I see it pop up. It belongs to the internet.”

Chance got wind of the meme and played into it on social media. “I love my wife igh,” he tweeted the day after Winsmore uploaded the video. On Aug. 5, 2019, he urged followers on Instagram to spam his comments with “I LOVE MY WIFE.”

“It was interesting to see him acknowledge the song, because I feel like his hand was forced as things had kind of reached a fever pitch,” Winsmore told the Dot. “I believe he was even selling ‘I love my wife’ shirts, which I didn’t get a percentage of, strangely.”

Chance has recently teased a new album, Star Line Gallery, but there’s no release date yet.

Before news of the split, speculation swirled about Chance and Corley’s relationship. “At Chance’s 30th birthday bash during Carnival in Jamaica last April, footage surfaced of the hitmaker dancing with another woman, and after the clip went viral, Corley shared a Maya Angelou quote about people struggling to grow up on Instagram,” according to People.

“I’ve never once rooted against Chance, but I feel like my song is like a hex I placed on him that will haunt him forever. I didn’t mean to do that!” Winsmore said. “I think we should stop bullying him. We should show the same love to Chance that we show to our wives. But for real, I’d love to see a Chance the Rapper comeback story. Should he get back in the studio, I am available for a feature.”

The Daily Dot reached out to Chance the Rapper’s publicists via email.

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*First Published: Apr 4, 2024, 3:21 pm CDT