Last week Jermaine Cole released his third studio album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive, debuting at #1 on Billboard 200. In a time when it seems like nobody is actually purchasing music, J. Cole’s album sold over 375K in it’s first week with no promotion and no single in rotation on the radio. How did he manage that? Maybe because people need and want to hear his message. And what is his message? Love, positivity and authenticity. In an industry where those characteristics are few and far between, Cole is a breath of fresh air. Fresh, relatable, charming and smart, Cole is for the people; and the people can tell.
Since the album dropped, the rapper has been on the promo trail delivering all kinds of realness. And not just about pushing the culture musically, but about capitalism, selling out, success, love and the current racial issues in the country. All the things that your favorite rapper doesn’t want to talk about. J. Cole could care less about being politically correct. His concern is the people which is why we love him.
Check out J. Cole’s moving performance of Be Free on Letterman.