J. Cole Previews Cole World: The Sideline Story for Press

J. Cole should consider swapping album titles with Big Sean. The North Carolina product previewed material from his debut album, Cole World: The Sideline Story, on Wednesday night (August 17) for press, and if tracks like mixtape favorites “Lights Please” and “In the Morning” featuring Drake, both set to be included on Cole World, impressed, then the Roc Nation signee is gonna be Finally Famous.

“I’m mad nervous, this is crazy,” Cole told the crowded room of critics who gathered at Roc the Mic Studios. Joining Cole in support were, Bystorm executive Wayne Barrow, Young Guru, and several Roc Nation employees. “This is the first time I’m playing the album for people other than selected fans.”

Songs titles are subject to change, as well as the sequencing, so the rapper and Roc Nation respectively asked that tracks not be identified.

The album opens with a familiar theme, a number lifted from his mixtape series, but buoyed by Cole’s meticulous production, including several progression changes.

Overall, the project is introspective, perhaps more than the guarded young MC has ever been, touching on personal topics such as the relationships with his father and mother.

The witty lyricist leaves plenty of room, however, for his pointed bars, including one particular track where he mercilessly boasts: “They know a star when they see a star nigga/Ain’t even gotta fuck him to know he a raw nigga.”

The Jay-Z protégé is still waiting on the leader of the Roc to bless him with a 16. But Cole played the record he has in mind for Hov; a track that could potentially end the album, that he produced. Cole actually was behind the boards for the majority of Cole World, with contributions from No I.D., Danjahandz, and L&X Music, among other co-producers.

When asked about the Jigga contribution, Cole was measured in his response, “You’re guess is as good as mine.”

But the St. John’s graduate was also confident and prideful about the collaboration.

“I don’t need a verse from Jay-Z,” he said, noting that it would just add another chip on his shoulder to prove his mettle as a musician. “But I don’t want to have to answer questions about it for the next year, either.”

Cole World: The Sideline Story is due September 27. —Jayson Rodriguez

Recommended for You

Around the Web

Best of XXL

  • ATLs.Marc.of.Excellence

    Been trackin dude since The Come Up. Hope he does well.

  • guttaman

    I dont get why J Cole is having difficulties getting a verse from his boss. Jay, what the hell??! Couldnt you at the least email YOUR up and coming Artist a verse?? I mean damn how much red tape is there?! R u that busy that you cant take 20 minutes to spit a few rhymes?? You made a whole album with Kanye.
    I dont get it dude

  • Mutada Mullah Atari

    Guaranteed Flop…

  • goat

    mutada, u couldnt be more wrong. but i guess haters gonna hate.

  • maddness

    I’m a huge Cole fan, but I do think he’s gonna flop. Not enough marketing and promotion, and Jay isn’t even helping him put his name out there. Drake had the whole machine behind him in order to blow up as big as he did. Like Guttaman said, Jay did a whole album with Kanye, and can’t give Cole a hot 16?? Plus Lights Please and In The Morning gonna be on the album? Those are some old ass tracks, does he really expect to please his fans by putting tracks from two years ago, after making them wait so long for an album?? The album’s gonna be 14 tracks and I already know 4 of them. In The Morning (old), Lights Please (old), Work Out (wack) and Can’t Get Enough (ok track, but not really flexing his lyrical talent). Man, I’m really disappointed to hear this news

  • mutada mullah atari

    Exactly, no knock at the kid he’s good…not the “savior” his stans want him to be but he’s above average for sure. But this album is going to flop hard. Period

  • maddness

    @Mutada, I actually do think he has enough skill and talent to be the “saviour”. Maybe I’m biased because you can consider me a stan. I only think he’s gonna flop strictly in terms of sales numbers. I do not think he’s gonna flop if we’re talking about quality of music that is going to be on the album.

    I do think he’s the best rapper that is out right now. The most well rounded by far of any of his peers. You only think he’s above average? Are there other rappers you think that are head and shoulders above Cole right now?

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » Album Preview: J. Cole, Cole World: Sideline Story

  • I Rep T.

    Sales wise…man to be honest I think people in here might be right. Dude is mad talented probably the best out right now, but like people have said you need the suits in the boardroom to push you, market you like there’s no tomorrow.

    The one thing I think that kills him especially is no radio play. As much we hate it, its the people on the radio getting spins 24/7 that end up going at least gold. If they got suits behind them, as Drake did, you go plat. Cole has basically no tracks on the radio, the only people that care about his music or true hip hop heads and unfortunately these are the same people on rapidshare/torrent etc.

    Good luck homey, hopefully you prove us wrong