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J. Cole On Colin Kapernick, His Lack Of Grammys, And More

J. Cole isn’t exactly known for spending a lot of time in the spotlight, but the rapper took a break from his reclusive ways to cover the April issue of GQ.

In the mag, the North Carolina native talks about everything from fatherhood, to collaborating with more artists, to not winning any Grammys.

Jermaine is famous for his way with words, so it’s not surprising that he drops some gems during this interview, which went down during NBA All-Star Weekend in his home state of North Carolina, where he performed at the halftime show.

On family, Cole–who is now married with a toddler, says: “I changed my life in order to get ready to have a family and to have a son,” he says. “I literally changed my life, where I was living, the things that I was doing. I changed. So because of that, when my son came, I was ready. I already made room.”

On collaborating with more artists, like 21 Savage and Offset: “I’ve reached a point in my life, where I’m like, ‘How long am I gonna be doing this for?’” says Cole. “I’m starting to realize like, oh shit—let’s say I stopped this year. I would feel like I missed out on certain experiences, you know? Working with certain artists, being more collaborative, making more friends out of peers, making certain memories that I feel like if I don’t, I’m gonna regret it one day.”

On the infamous ‘J. Cole Went Platinum With No Features’ slogan: “I was loving it. I was like, ‘Word up—this is funny as hell.’ But the second or third time, I was like, ‘All right, it’s almost embarrassing now.’ Like, ‘All right, man, y’all gonna make me put a feature on the album just so this shit can stop.’”

On losing Best New Artist at the 2012 Grammys: “It would’ve been disastrous for me, because subconsciously it would’ve been sending me a signal of like ‘Okay, I am supposed to be this guy.’ But I would’ve been the dude that had that one great album and then fizzled out.”

On Colin Kapernick’s settlement with the NFL: “Listen, justice was served. This man got his money, know what I mean? Plus, he’ll probably play again.”

On his very unexpected 2018 interview with Lil Pump: “Honestly, my intention was to show the world how smart he was and to have a conversation that kind of reveals who this kid is. I don’t think that was the outcome, because I think he put a wall up. It doesn’t change the fact that he is a smart kid.”

J. Cole talks about all of these topics and more as he gears up for the release of his next album–whenever that may me. You can check out the full cover story over at GQ.




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