On December 9 J. Cole will release his third LP, 2014 Forest Hills Drive. While not quite a surprise, the album will drop with no singles or lead videos, an accelerated release plan that's a credit to the loyal audience Cole has built since releasing his debut mixtape in 2009.
This past summer, Cole honored that day-one fanbase with the Dollar And A Dream Tour—a series of six shows engineered for folks who love his album cuts. Charging just $1 for entry, Cole turned to the core that launched him from a scrappy North Carolina hopeful to a nationwide name for inspiration: "Some people grab your eye instantly, because of their energy and their passion, and what the song means to them," he said, ahead of Dollar And A Dream's Los Angeles stop.
Before ripping the stage in LA, we hung out with Cole while he got a shape-up and a visit from his buddy Drake. While fans lined up, Cole talked candidly about how he sees the world, and how he thinks the world sees him.