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On the Sideline with J. Cole

On the Sideline with J. Cole

Does fame in this game have to change who you are? J. Cole?s rise started with the success of 2009?s The Warm Up and transcended to the Nice Kicks realm through Celebrity Sneaker Stalker. It appeared a star was born. Like many though, Young Simba had some growing pains on the way. The come up was difficult as album push backs, crossover questions, even sneakerhead status, led many to doubt whether or not Cole would in fact ?blow up?. Despite the uncertainty of others, even his boss-to-be at one point, he never stopped believing in himself. ?Desire?, he says. “That?s the key word. When you really want something you don?t give up. You never really fail; everything is a stepping-stone and that?s what kept me going.? With the release of Cole World: The Sideline Story comes another stepping-stone and a chance to step out. We caught up with Cole on the Texas leg of his tour days before his debut.

J. Cole?s had the attention of the sneaker community from the start. A Penny 1 sighting on his Warm Up track list paired with a hoops pedigree made him an instant favorite among readers. All seem cemented until one slip caused a stir. After an infamous interview with Funk Flex, some in the sneaker community called out Cole for not knowing what was on his own feet. Rather than get spiteful he addressed the matter with wit on the MMG anthem ?Fitted Cap?. Brash on record but humble in person, he reiterates his appreciation for the culture and that he?s still coming up. ?Every time I do a video or photo shoot I get nervous about the shoes so I bring a couple. I don?t really have the connections yet where they send me everything. You know Wale got the stupid connects! I don?t really got that yet so I?m buying all my kicks.? He lists Flight Club as a favorite shop and seems to be catching on quick with Black/Metallic Silver Air Jordan 5s on his feet and the 2002 ?Raptor? Air Jordan 7s on his album cover. ?I got to the (cover) shoot and there wasn?t much clothes or kicks to deal with, luckily I brought a few pairs and I felt best in those.? The other pair on deck? ?The DMP 11s?.

J. Cole

Mr. Nice Watch may not have the sneaker connections yet, but he?s certainly clocking in his industry. Over the past year he?s ghostwritten a commercial hit (Diddy?s ?Coming Home?), produced on a critical smash (Kendrick Lamar?s Section.80), and played opener to Rihanna on her Loud Tour. Sure, the spotlight hasn?t shined directly on him, but he hasn?t been far from it. On ?HiiiPoWeR?, a song that appeared on Lamar?s Section.80 but could?ve easily been a hit on Cole?s album (or anyone else?s for that matter), Cole doesn?t come off as a poor editor but rather someone with a greater appreciation for the art. ?He killed that! He really made the beat what it was.? When asked if Kendrick owes him any favors for that assist he laughs it off as if he has crates of classics that he?s sitting on. He probably does too, as he?s spent the past two hours on his tour bus playing beats for Trae Tha Truth.

J. Cole

While his narratives may play better as reflection music than riding music, you?d never know it at his live shows. His stories come to life with an energy upgraded from record. Fans from every walk of life recite the tales as if they?re their own. And maybe they are. ?Some (stories) are personal, some are the people?, Cole says. ?I think it?s cool to not disclose everything, like ?oh that?s mine that?s somebody else?s.? He?s quick to recognize the importance of this aspect. ?What other new artist is telling these stories, talking about these things, on a major scale?? Few indeed, and far fewer on a major scale.

Some fans wondered just how major that scale could be. After DJ Semtex dubbed Sideline Story a mix between College Dropout and Illmatic, day one fans and newbies alike salivated over a release date. They?d have to wait. And wait. Pushbacks and unexpected (though acclaimed) mixtapes raised questions as to whether or not he was sitting on a classic and if the intended records would ever see the light of day. Would he be another example of a talented young artist pressured by a label to find a single? Would he have to give up his best records for free to build buzz all while deconstructing his own album? Yes and no. While some records have been getting polished for years, other standouts are brand new even by web standards. ?I?ve got a couple that are four years old, I?ve got a couple that are four weeks old. The Missy Elliot song is like four or five weeks old, the Jay-Z record is four or five weeks old, ?Lost Ones? is four years old?it?s a mixture.?

J. Cole

So after all this waiting time and hard work, what is it that J. Cole wants from his album? ?I want (fans) to feel like it?s something special. Six weeks after the album?s out, six months, and six years, I want them to be playing it. I just want it to be a timeless piece of work.? Success doesn?t end with him though. ?If I?m successful it can make it easier for a guy like Kendrick Lamar when it?s his time or younger rappers that are really saying something. That?s why I really wanna win, just for the game.? Humble beginnings to unselfish success, it turns out fame doesn?t have to change who you are.

Buy Cole World: The Sideline Story at iTunes

Thanks to Ibrahim and ScoreMore

Comments

  1. Igotkicks107 says:

    classic album?

    1. Whatever Man says:

      I swear, I scrolled down to read some of theses post’s and seriously, I can put money on , that most idiots writing , bullshit, on who’s better rapper, wiz this, wale that, big Sean bullshit!! I bet most of these idiots are 21years or even younger! On that note, on this guy Cole and even the rappers comparing to him. For people to even have the slightest thought that any of these guys are talented !!! U guys are ignorant or have no sense of what music really is! Rap, is rap, all the shit out now all sounds the same, the same bullshit niggaz been talking or rapping about for years, is the same shit being rapped about now but even cornier!!
      All the same beats, auto- tuned, shitty ass music!! None of these niggaz got no talent!and last of all , they have pay’d no dues, come out with one album and everyone wants to crown ‘em! Seriously when these niggaz got 3-4 albums that go platinum then say what u gotta say

      1. Joshudson13 says:

        Dude just shut the fuck up if you dont like rap dont read the article. You racist piece of shit. Nobody said anything about Wiz, or anybody else so dont bring that shit in here cuz most of us arent the hypebeasts that crown ppl like big sean and wiz.

        1. Slickstyle393 says:

          How is he racist ? You’re on of them ignorant people the guy’s talkin about.?

          1. Brenda says:

            U NEED TO HOP OFF THAT HOE DICK NIGGA

          2. Shadriley20 says:

            WHAT?

          3. Gododgers says:

            Brenda’s got a baby…

      2. Evan says:

        i could maybe understand what your talking about if this article if it were another rapper but j. cole is honestly one of the realest people in rap right now. He’s not even my favorite person yet i can recognize the huge amount of talent he has. From the way you’re talking about him i can tell you havent listened to enough of him because all the shit u said about him doesnt even make sense in relation to cole. Actually listen to some of his music and not just the few songs you may have heard by him on the radio

        1. Exavon says:

          ok j.cole ppl say is one of the realest ppl in rap now i think different he raps about shit the sounds real but all we know he could be lieing to come on now in the rap game every rapper makes up stories cause sooner or later your goinn to run out of shit to say

          1. Aljujuan13 says:

            the reason they say he is real is because he talks about real life situations. It isn’t always about his life?

          2. NishaJanell says:

            Um…. What he raps about isn’t all HIS story. Maybe a few of them, but not ALL of them. If you went on his Twitter you would know that “My story ain’t the only one I’m tryna tell.”

      3. Sensehns says:

        boy looka here for every person sayin Cole sucks theres a thousand who appreacite his substance and talent…but fuck appreciation its quite obvious hes sick and i quote…”what you think cole aint hot? what? where you read that sh*t/ you believe that sh*t all cuz some lame nigga tweet that sh*t/ have you seen my shows, have you seen my hoes, if i wasnt hot would they be so thick? HUH!! guess not!!!”….so c’mon now if you aint buzzin or a star rap artist yourself you lame tweets/comments about him being wack are superrrrrr irrelavant TRUST ME your a lame for spending time tryna hate, if you think your any better i’d sure like to hear what chu got, better yet maybe not…it might just be hater music lmao COLE WORLD BABY!! platinum in several days lets do it!!!…

      4. Brenda says:

        SHUT UP U CANT RAP SO SHUT THE HELL UP U TALKIN BOUT EVERYONE ELSE U AINT EVEN RAPPING AND THIS IS REALLY TALKIN BOUT LIFE SOMETHING U NEED

      5. Exavon says:

        then i can say lil wayne because his albums do everythin u would want your album to do he has no problem selling copies nd in the rap game if u aint selling any copies then your trash

      6. Guest says:

        wow, cool story bro, can you kind of stfu up no one really cares about anything you just said.

    2. west says:

      we got to stop this internet beef shit come on people its just an opinion on what rapper people like it don’t matter what rapper is better than the other because it’s just an opinion everybody has one?like who you like and stop?posting all this bullshit…and please stop the hating shit makes sick

  2. YLRO says:

    The kid is the real deal dope album

  3. Dq71093 says:

    jcole is the best rapper out right now .. buy the album

    1. Christopher Murphy says:

      He’s apart of the younger extremely talented lyricaly beasty ass young rappers. Him, Wale, Big Sean,just to name a few are going to save hip-hop.

      1. Hakiem says:

        Big Sean isn’t saving anything.

        1. Brenda says:

          STOP HATIN GET A LIFE AND U START SAVIN SOMETHING BOYO,NIGGA

          1. damn Brenda is getting mad at everyone lmao calm down go get some dick or something

      2. Anonymous says:

        Big Sean? Nope…

        “My crew is who I be wittity with it
        Rose, I sippity sip it
        I’m Quagmire, I fukk hoes
        My cashflow, I giggity get it”

        Lol..You can’t make that stuff up!

        1. wat says:

          Big Sean is bringing back the fusion between party music and lyricism like Luda had years ago.

          1. Mike Jack says:

            to compare Big Sean to Luda is disrespectful to Luda

          2. Shadriley20 says:

            How dare you compare that piece of trash big sean to Luda listen to theatre of the mind and tell me big sean even got somethin like that in his arsenal. Luda has done it all platinum records number one hits big sean jus sayin what the rest of these clones sayin,I GET MONEY, I SMOKE WEED, I FUCK BITCHES, AND I DRINK. Smack yo self fool

  4. Sskolnick28 says:

    bought it 3 times, worth every cent

    1. Gary says:

      Why would anyone buy 3 copies of the same album ? I guess your making up for two other ppl who illegally downloaded his album like me.

      1. Anonymous says:

        Don’t hate on someone for supporting an artist. And ya that’s exactly what he’s doing, giving the man his money for his album since most people like you won’t.?

  5. Chris Verdi says:

    big sean is corny af. he aint savin shtt. COLEWORLD

    1. Jgbsnowboard says:

      i know u didnt try big sean nigga u sleep af? sorry

      1. CJ says:

        ^ Big Sean fans are so stupid. Prime example.

        1. Brenda says:

          BITCH YOU STUPID THATS A PRIME EXAMPLE BOY!!!! STOP HATIN DAMN I FUKKIN HATE HATERS.

  6. NAGGER says:

    Niggas a illuminati so i aint buying shit from this nigga.

    1. Alex M-H says:

      Ignorant people like you I swear smh..

      1. Lone says:

        6 weeks…..6 months…6 years…..clue?

        his album cover…..sittin on the cross…clue??

        do you remember young simba? smh he even says he’ll give his soul on his new album…..pay attention cause your ignorance is bliss

        1. DevinThomas says:

          ILLUMANTI CAN SUCK MY DICK I HOPE THEY RAPE YO ASS hahahahahahaahaha

        2. franchise3 says:

          You’re stupid af, I hate ignorant people like you. Cole is a great artist. You say that he says “he’ll give you your soul”…NO that’s not what he meant. He’s reciting a prayer you dumb fuck. Quit trying to make assumptions. Just listen to good music, Cole speaks the truth. End of story.

          1. Joshudson13 says:

            I kno right. I see the cross but theres a ton of other things that could coincidently make a cross. Quit trippin on that shit. If youre lookin for sumthan, especially sumthan as easy to make as a cross, you’re gonna eventually find it. All it is is the shadow of the next part of the bench that he’s sittin on. No big deal.

        3. Brenda says:

          FUKK ILLUMINATI BITCH. BITCHES AINT GON DO SHIT.IF I HAD MY OWN ARMY I`LL KILL EVERY FUKKIN ILLUMINATI MEMBER IN THE WORLD.DAMN DEVIL WORSHIPPING ASS FOOLS THINK EVERYONE SCARED I SHO AINT. DEM NIGGAS CAN KISS MY ASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS BITCHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

    2. i bet you don’t even know what the illuminati is!!

    3. sneakgeek says:

      he a close friend of mine def not an freemason hes just another person who grew up in the ville and made it.

  7. DevinThomas says:

    Nah Ill stick with Wale Big Sean Kanye Jay Wiz Currenssy and shit J Cole don’t even know the kicks he rockin and as for music BORING

    1. Gryyuhu says:

      You can’t call J.Cole boring and listen to Wiz, he’s terrible

    2. zzzzzzzzz says:

      i aint one to knock on someone?elses?opinion but did he really just say that?

    3. Floresf says:

      You probably can’t comprehend what J. Cole is saying in his lyrics. It’s ok, some idiots aren’t meant to listen to great rap.

      1. DevinThomas says:

        IDIOT??? Because of my opinion hahah stop wasting your time replying to my comments FINALLY FAMOUS IN THIS BITCH

        1. Joshudson13 says:

          Yeah, idiot. A while back i remember you sayin you were the wide reciever Devin Thomas who went to Michigan State and was a second round pick. smh

          1. DevinThomas says:

            ???????????? Who the fuck is that

        2. Brenda says:

          U AINT FINALLY FAMOUS? NIGGA SO GO PUT A THUMB IN YA ASS AND RELAX TALKIN SHIT.U KNOW BY NOW TALKIN SHIT AINT GETTING U NO WHERE.ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS NIGGA!!!?

    4. Mike says:

      Commas are free – use them.

      1. BEMADATYOSELFFOO says:

        Does it really matter if someone uses proper grammar an punctuation. People like you need a lifeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee,.’/”/>!@#$%^&*!

        1. Brenda says:

          YES IT DOES MATTER NIGGA U FUKKIN RETARTED NIGGA

    5. Sneakerspop says:

      you can say hes boring but he’s producing classics. not just rappin. do your homework. and as for kicks, who gives? arn’t you supposed to rock what you like??

    6. wat says:

      I agree that Cole is boring, but Wale is even more boring and Curren$y + Wiz are wack as fuck.

      1. u out ur fukin mind!!! now cole is better than wiz but keep curren$y out of dis, u must not be listening 2 what da fux he is saying!! listen to curren$y lik u listen 2 cole den redo ur comment becuz u smokin sumthing highly illegal there

        1. wat says:

          You mean like Curren$y?

      2. Brenda says:

        STOP HATIN GET A LIFE CUZ U BORING TO LIL ASS BOY

        1. Shadriley says:

          Why do so many people like currensy? yea dats right i left out that dumbass dollar sign. Wale is good but boring, i mean no hits no notta. But currensy shouldnt even be brought into a conversation about best rappers. I can see why some idiots would like Wiz and Sean they’re wack but at least they’re active but what the fuck is currensy doing?

    7. Brenda says:

      KNOWING SHOES AINT GETTIN NO ONE FAR IN LIFE LIKE YOU NIGGA

  8. Jrguerrero says:

    He done did it … Legend in the making

  9. Koolaid says:

    Looks like J Cole’s promotion team is in this topic because the album is average at best.??

    1. barn says:

      “average at best”…kill yourself….NOW!

    2. Sam says:

      im guessing you listen to wiz too? -_-

      1. y everyone hatin on wiz, he got a go rhyme pattern, not as lyrical as cole but he make good musik…. (4 weed heads lls)

    3. wat says:

      Agreed. Album was trash imo. I like him but I’m not about to dick ride and say something that’s not true.?

  10. Geraldjkoh says:

    I don’t know about all this back and forth but Wiz is killing Cole? are you kidding me?

    1. kells says:

      not musically. wiz should be proud of selling his soul to sell records smh

      1. ya n dis internet sh!t lmfao y everybody gotta be sellin dere souls to make it big??? thats lik sayin the planet x comin close to earth thing is true. tf

  11. Floresf says:

    You probably can’t comprehend what J. Cole is saying in his lyrics. It’s ok, some idiots aren’t meant to listen to great rap.?

  12. Dbwideout says:

    I’m not one to say anyone is illuminati because most time its a joke, but why would he say 6-6-6??? Thats just weird….

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  14. DopeMatic3002 says:

    Classic?? No. But a cool cd. Definitely a solid debut. I actually wish I bought this and downloaded Big Sean instead of the other way around.

  15. MZA says:

    The album is ok; hardly classic. The only song that is truly a banger is the jawn with Trey Songz (Can’t Get Enough). ?J. Cole has a lot of work to do if he wants to compete with some of the other young emcees like Big KRIT, Dom Kennedy, Curren$y, Kendrick Lamar, The Cool Kids, Pac Div and so on who are constantly putting out new music. So far he has made a lot of declarations and promises that have not panned out.

    1. Chipmunkaj says:

      J. Cole is the modern example of real hip-hop. As is K.R.I.T. Dom is losing it, and that hurts to say. And Curren$y is just a nigga livin’ his life. He doesn’t have much to say. Can’t Get Enough isn’t Cole’s best song on this album either.

  16. Anonymous says:

    J. Cole and Wale are pretty much the only two young rappers that have songs with any kind of substance.? It feels good to hear a guy put on for the state where your from and even though too many people are hatin…we know he can rap circles around 90% of the rappers talking that BS “diamonds and trap rap” !? COLE WORLD 910 STAND UP!!!

    1. Anonymous says:

      XV, Big KRIT, Kendrick Lamar, Emilio Rojas, Fashawn, Rockie Fresh…just a couple more young emcees that have songs with substance.

  17. Jujube says:

    You dudes have nothing better to do but argue back and forth about people own individual opinions grow up all you fucks need to get jobs and stop maxing out your moms and pops credit cards to buy kicks

  18. JAKE22 says:

    COLE WORLD NO BLANKET!!!!

  19. J.Cole’s album was stretched too long and the addition of songs that have a few years of mileage (Lights Please, In the Morning, Who Dat) wasn’t needed.

    It’s okay, from first listen. I’ll go back over it again later. I also picked up Phonte’s “Charity Starts at Home,” and 9th Wonder’s “The Wonder Years.” I was actually anticipating those more than Cole’s.

    Shoutouts to NC! We aren’t “up next,” we’ve BEEN HERE! Respect it!

  20. alidia says:

    Hel YEE Niq qass!!!!!!

    Finally It Happened…..I got rid of all my ISHHH
    from my cre dit report y’all – I was in deep for 5 years.? Coudn’t buy
    sheeet.? Just approved for that 25k loan to buy a new CAMAARO!!!

    IF YOU GOT PROBLEMS WITH WITH THAT CREDIT REPORTING ISH, GET RID OF DAT MF. Call these people at? 877-647-1477 and GET URS TOO . THEY DO A FAST AND AMAZING JOB AND THEY ARE CHEAP AS HELL.? I just sat and waited and all my garbage got fixed in no time.?

    My homeboy was in terrible
    shape too, and he clean!? Hit em up – they will help!!!!!!?