O'Shea Jackson was born on June 15, 1969, in Baldwin Hills, South Central Los Angeles, the son of Doris, a hospital clerk and custodian, and Hosea Jackson, who worked as a groundskeeper at UCLA and a machinist. He has an older brother as well as a half-sister who was murdered when Ice Cube was 12. His cousin is Teren Delvon Jones, also known as Del tha Funky Homosapien, who is a part of the rap group Hieroglyphics and who has also worked with Gorillaz; another cousin is Kam of rap group The Warzone. Jackson grew up on Van Wick Street in South Central Los Angeles. In his early teens, Jackson developed an interest in hip hop music, and began writing raps in Los Angeles George Washington Preparatory High School's Keyboard Class, Jackson penned his first rap song in the ninth grade after a friend named "Kiddo", challenged him to write a song during a Keyboard class. Kiddo lost. On the origins of his rapper name, Ice Cube says that it came from his older brother. He is quoted as saying "He threatened to slam me into a freezer and pull me out when I was an ice cube. I just started using that name, and it just caught on. "