Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Now Playing|| January 28th

I have always been a fan of J. Cole not that I ever made any effort in the past to listen to all the tracks on his album, I simply just liked what I heard on the radio (aka his singles). He's one of few artists that adds something so raw and real to the Hip Hop industry (something that has drawn me to artists like Lupe Fiasco). I mean, he was one of the few people on such a grand stage that spoke about Ferguson especially in the Hip Hop and R&B world.

In a society that is now constantly inundated with music about money, violence, drugs and women, it's nice to refresh by listening to someone like J. Cole. I mean don't get me wrong sometimes the dreamy beats of songs like "I Don't Mind" are to hard to resist as Usher proclaims to our generation that he wouldn't mind dating a stripper. 

With all the hype J. Cole's album has been getting I decided to listen to 2014 Forest Hills Drive and I invite you to listen along as I share some of my favorites. 

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

Part of the reason why this was published today is because today is January 28th (get it?). J. Cole titled the song after his birthday, which is today.  In this song, he alludes to the events in Ferguson and issues in the black community. He also uses this song to announce his arrival-letting the world know that he's here. 

Like show me New York's ladder
I climb it and set the bar so high that you gotta get Obama to force the air force to find it
Never mind it, you'll never reach that

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

I appreciate J. Cole's ability to pour his soul into his music, talks about important topics, introspective and lyrically amazing. Every bar has emotion. He has clearly mastered the art of wordplay and always has a story to tell whether it's about his own life or others and what they go through. He's genuine and relatable, but most importantly he is real and the closest we'll probably every be to the old Hip Hop.

Have you listened to 2014 Forest Hills Drive? Which song is your favorite?

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  1. Must check him!

  2. J Cole is the truth, I personally do not listen to most rap but will listen to him. Love his song "she knows". Thanks for the visit to the blog, and glad that you were inspired. I live in Toronto, Canada and it's crazy cold, however the weather has been weird sometimes, it's warmer so I can wear skirts and dresses. Other times there's a huge snow storm.

  3. love your blog and i love his music too!
    please check out my blog and id love to follow each other on GFC :)

  4. Such a great well written post! I couldn't agree more with this post...This is definitely J Coles best album to date..I love all his work but this album is just amazing! Im happy he's getting the recognition he deserves

  5. I love J Cole and Lupe Fiasco. Have you ever listened to any British rappers because I find that the London rap scene raps about personal issues like hardship more

    Alaina | Urban-Glam Fashion Blog

  6. I LOVE J Cole and I LOVE 2014 Forest Hills. My favorite tracks are the Intro, Love Yourz, Role Models, and G.O.M.D. Great review


  7. this is wonderful :) i hope you're having an amazing day!


  8. Hello,

    I am a big fan of J Cole.
    Him and Drake get me.

    Thanks for your lovely comment on my blog.

  9. I think J. Cole is this generation's Nas! Good post

    xo | The Fashion Forecast


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