Each song on this album is connected together to tell one story about how J. Cole left his childhood home in North Carolina (hence, the title 2014 Forest Hills Drive) to pursue his dream of becoming a musician in NYC (where he also went to college). In no particular order, here are some of my favorite songs off the album:
There's something very irresistible about a person with so much money that chooses to ride a bike through NYC like an ordinary person instead of sitting in the backseat of Mercedes as his driver makes the twists and turns around the city trying to avoid car scratch marks from crazy taxi drivers with his shades on and the dimmed windows of the car up. To summarize all of that in one, J. Cole is such a humble individual and this is easily represented in this video.
As the introduction to his album, in a pained voice, J. Cole croons how he's come very far aka his dreams have come true (the journey wasn't an easy one)
Look how far I done came
They say that dreams come true
And when they do that there's a beautiful thing
With a sea-blue moody visual, J. Cole reflects on the rap industry and gives some insight to how he was sometimes limited creatively. He also talks about how the industry has affected his relationship with his family and friends.
Aim for the stars and I shouldn't have missed
But I was riding on fumes so I stopped by the moon
Now I'm sitting on the hood of this
Like thanks for the view
This is the last song on J. Cole's album and it's my favorite song off his album! With this song, J. Cole comes to a point in his life where he can reflect.
He reflects on his journey to success and comes back home because he realizes that love will always be more important than success. He returns to 2014 Forest Hills Drive (I assume) back to his family and loved ones and emphasizes how important it is to love yourz because the limelight (which is far from how great it seems to be) is nothing without being able to share it with those most important people in your life.
It's beauty in the struggle, ugliness in the success
Hear my words or listen to my signal of distress
I grew up in the city and though some times we had less
Compared to some of my friends down the block man we were blessed