Song of the Moment

J. Cole - Lost Ones

Friday, September 30, 2011

J. Cole - Cole World: The Sideline Story

Finally back to normal after being out of the office for the last few days. A long while back, follower Ashley dropped some J. Cole into the suggestion box. Sometimes though, stuff is in the box before it drops, which was the case with Mr. Cole here. This is his first studio record, and it dropped on Tuesday this week. Jermaine Cole was born in 1985 in Frankfurt, Germany. Yes, you read that correctly. Born in Germany. That didn't last long though, as he moved to North Carolina at eight months. Turns out he was a pretty smart kid too. He ended up attending St. John's University on an academic scholarship and graduated magna cum laude. Cole got into rap at a young age, citing 2Pac, Eminem, Nas and Andre 3000 as his major influences. He started rhyming words at age 15, and he thought he might have a shot at a career someday. A story goes that he made this great track over a sampled beat, stood outside of Jay-Z's office for over 3 hours waiting to show it to him. When Jay came out of his office, he shunned J and things looked grim. Cole was working at a collection agency at that time, and a couple months after that incident, an associate of Jay-Z left a message for Cole saying they needed to meet as soon as possible. Immediately, Cole left his job and got ready for the meeting. He was signed shortly thereafter. In terms of style, this album is a little different. It's a little lighter like in the the Drake realm of hip hop. It's more than that though. It seems to have more substance than most Drake records. While I don't think he knocked this record out of the park, it's a solid first effort. It reminds of of like a cross of Drake, Bruno Mars and maybe Lil Wayne. Some rapping, some piano laced beats and a lighter flow - yet solid flow. Even if you're a pop fan, this is worth checking out. It's got a semi-pop feel to it.

1. Intro
2. Dollar and a Dream III
3. Can't Get Enough
4. Lights Please
5. Interlude
6. Sideline Story
7. Mr. Nice Watch
8. Cole World
9. In the Morning
10. Lost Ones
11. Nobody's Perfect
12. Never Told
13. Rise and Shine
14. God's Gift
15. Breakdown
16. Work Out

Listen To Samples

Top 3 Tracks:
1. Lost Ones
2. Work Out
3. Can't Get Enough

3.25 out of 5 stars


  1. "Hello Mr. Nice Watch" :)

    I like this album right here. I think I see how you're making the Drake comparison... in a way. The substance of his lyrics as you said does carry more weight. I love "Interlude" (I know how you love those interludes, wink wink*) and how that transitions into "Sideline Story".

    This album truly comes off as a story, in that Cole gives some details of his life before and after the notoriety he's received.

    Nice review!!

  2. It's starting to grow on me quite a bit. I'd probably still stand by my rating - but I do think he could be considered a real up and comer. I'd like to see him flow a little harder, but I could understand if that's simply not his forte.

    Guys like this make me potentially excited for what hip hop and turn into in the future.