Interview: J Cole
J Cole will be heading over to the UK soon to deliver what will be his biggest UK tour yet (his own words). The Wrap Up’s Ra’ed Poetical caught up with the 'Crooked Smile' rapper before then to get a little insight into how he's feeling leading up to the UK leg of his tour, a successful year and how he never thought he would have more than ten fans in the UK! Crazy, ay?
The Wrap Up: A huge congrats on a great year thus far! ‘Born Sinner’ has done extremely well – has it sunk in?
J Cole: Thank you man! Yeah it’s sunk in because I’ve definitely appreciated it; I’m still appreciating it, but I think about the future so much that it’s rare for me to get stuck on the year I had and the album that I just dropped. But I appreciate every inch of it every day.
TWU: You’re heading back over to the UK in December and more dates got added (from much demand) - what can we expect this time round?
J Cole: It’s gonna be the biggest show I’ve ever had in the UK and to have three of them… crazy! I think I’ve always had such amazing noise over in the UK, especially in London - one time we came over there and did like five shows in Shepherds Bush; it was crazy. I’ve had some moments over there but this is the biggest moment so far doing three nights and with the way the show is structured… I’m just a better performer now.
TWU: What’s your best memory of London thus far?
J Cole: I did a show in a spot called KOKO, it was one of my first joints. I did three shows in a row, which was amazing. Another memory I have of my first time to London was when I did Wireless. I wasn’t confident that anyone would know who I was; coming from North Carolina I couldn’t imagined how my music had travelled. So I respected the ten people who know my words… [but] then I get out there for the show and hear thousands of kids that knew every word and it kind of blew me away! I have never forgot that moment.
TWU: ‘Crooked Smile’ is a great record. Did it do the job you wanted it to do?
J Cole: It’s definitely doing its job and making the statement that I hoped that it would and having that effect on people. I meet people on the street, all ages, and they tell me how much the song has helped them and how good it made them feel about themselves, and that was dope. It’s called ‘Crooked Smile’ but I don’t physically talk about a smile - it’s a way of telling people to appreciate their flaws.
TWU: You're touring with Eminem and Kendrick Lamar in Australia in February, right? That’s epic.
J Cole: It’s just an amazing tour and he was gracious to invite us out, you know he’s doing stadiums so that’s pretty amazing. I just can’t wait to be around the dude so that will be exciting, other than that I’m always prepared when it comes to shows… I’m always ready.
TWU: You’ve mentioned throughout your career being a big Aaliyah fan. The new album is apparently out next year - can we expect to hear a feature from yourself on there?
J Cole: Nobody approached me, but I would definitely love to do something and if they did approach me I would definitely be down. I’m a huge Aaliyah fan - it wouldn’t even be a question.
Words: Ra’ed Poetical (@MrPoetical)
Online Edit: Maz Khan (@MazHalima)
J Cole will be coming to London in December – check out the dates and details below.
1st – Hammersmith – SOLD OUT
2nd - Hammersmith – SOLD OUT
3rd - Hammersmith
5th - Leeds Academy
6th – Manchester Apollo
7th O2 Academy Glasgow
8th Birmingham Academy
9th Birmingham Academy – SOLD OUT
You can get your tickets HERE and if you fancy meeting the man himself, you can call 0207 757 7563 for details.