About The Performance
When J. Cole graduated from St. John's university and his mother asked him what he was to do next, his reply was "going out to get signed, Mom"...
While he did go out and do just that shortly after graduating magna cum laude (with very high honor) , J's mother couldn't have possibly imagined that in just a few years, her son would be just across the Hudson River headlining Live on Letterman from the historic Ed Sullivan Theatre in New York City.
By the age of 15, Cole developed a love for telling stories in his lyrics as well as for producing records. After receiving a $1,300 Ensoniq ASR-X Vintage Synth Explorer as a Christmas gift from his mother, Cole became utterly infatuated with creating music and soon after graduating college, he released his first mixtape entitled "The Come Up" to underground critical acclaim.
Now, J. Cole has just released his second full length album, "Born Sinner" - once again to massive praise from critics. The album features old school sounding production solely from Cole as well as a number of vocal contributions from Miguel, Amber Coffman, Kendrick Lamar and more.
In the pre-show interview, Cole opened up about a number of topics regarding his new LP including working with TLC, moving up his release date to compete with Kanye West's "Yeezus", and how he finds his infectious samples. Cole also talked about his most personal song on "Born Sinner" entitled 'Crooked Smile'. He explained how the song is a true reflection of himself and thematically, deals with empowering yourself by embracing your flaws.
After the interview, J. Cole was ready to hit the hallowed Ed Sullivan Theatre stage for another installment of Live On Letterman. Once the lights went out and fans heard J. Cole's introduction (as is Live on Letterman tradition), the bash was underway - and fans were ready to party.
Cole opened the show with 'Trouble' - arguably the darkest song on "Born Sinner"; addressing the temptations and troubles of being a born sinner. After a boisterous ovation from the crowd, Cole then cued the band into the second track of the night, "Land of the Snakes", another new cut off "Born Sinner".
J. then gave fans a hearty dose of throwbacks off "Cole World: The Sideline Story" - performing the pair of 'Nobody's Perfect' and the ever infamous Kanye West sampled 'Work Out'. Cole then brought it back to "Born Sinner" for moving performances of 'She Knows' and 'Forbidden Fruit'.
The room was electric by this point and fans were singing every word to songs like 'Lights Please', 'In The Morning', 'Can't Get Enough' and 'Crooked Smile'. Cole then humbly thanked fans once again before regrettably informing them that the next song of the night would be the last. With that, J. Cole rang in a stellar rendition of the "Born Sinner" track 'Power Trip' - wrapping up a fine night of hip-hop, Live on Letterman style.
By Gian Vassaliko