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2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
is the third studio album by American rapper J. Cole. It was released on December 9, 2014, by Roc Nation, Dreamville Records
Dreamville Records
and Columbia Records.[2] Recording sessions took place over the whole year, while the production on the album was primarily handled by Cole himself, along with several others such as Illmind, Vinylz, Phonix Beats and Willie B. It was announced three weeks before its release and had very little marketing, with no singles or promotion taking place prior to its release. The album was supported by four singles: "Apparently", "Wet Dreamz", "No Role Modelz" and "Love Yourz". 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
received generally positive reviews from critics who admired its ambitious concept, production and lyrics. The album debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling 353,000 copies in its first week. It was nominated for Best Rap Album
Album
at the 58th Grammy Awards. The album won Album
Album
of the Year at the 2015 BET Hip Hop Awards, and Top Rap Album
Album
at the 2015 Billboard Music Awards. The single "Apparently" was nominated for Best Rap Performance at the 58th Grammy Awards. As of September 2015, the album has sold one million copies in the United States. By doing so, J. Cole
J. Cole
earned his first million-selling album in the country.[3] The album was certified double Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in October 2016.

Contents

1 Background 2 Recording and production 3 Release and promotion

3.1 Singles 3.2 Other songs

4 Critical reception

4.1 Accolades 4.2 Awards

5 Commercial performance 6 Track listing 7 Personnel 8 Charts

8.1 Weekly charts 8.2 Year-end charts

9 Certifications 10 Release history 11 See also 12 References 13 Further reading 14 External links

Background[edit] The album's title is the name of an address from J. Cole's childhood home in Fayetteville, North Carolina, where he was living with his mother, his brother and his stepfather. In 2003, after Cole graduated from high school, the home was foreclosed on while J. Cole
J. Cole
attended St. John's University in New York City. In 2014, the rapper re-bought the house, marking his first home purchase.[4] It is where he wrote some of his earliest raps and became serious about pursuing a career as a musician.[5] The album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
recounts the story of Cole leaving North Carolina, and moving to New York City
New York City
all in pursuit of his dreams; it battles with the transition that were taken in order to find his success and fame within the music industry. The majority of Cole's childhood involved him and his family frequently moving from place to place while their mother tried to make ends meet. Cole now plans on allowing a new family to move into the house he once called home for an extremely cheap renting price, in the hope that they will find their feet in life like he once did.[6] Recording and production[edit] On August 15, 2014, Cole released the song "Be Free", as a response to the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.[7] In an interview with NPR's Microphone Check radio show, Cole revealed that the song was recorded the same week he recorded the song "Intro" from 2014 Forest Hills Drive, but was never intended for the album.[8] In September 2014, during an interview with HipHopDX, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony's manager Steve Lobel revealed Krayzie Bone
Krayzie Bone
and Bizzy Bone recorded a track with Cole for the album, though the song never made the album's final cut.[9] The production on the album was primarily handled by J. Cole, along with its guest productions, including Dreamville's in-house producer Ron Gilmore, DJ Dahi,[10] Illmind,[11] Willie B,[12] Phonix Beats,[13] Vinylz[14] and Pop Wansel, with additional production provided by Cardiak[15] and CritaCal,[16] among others.[17][18] Release and promotion[edit] On November 16, 2014, Cole released a video trailer, where he announced he will be releasing his third album, titled 2014 Forest Hills Drive on December 9. The video also featured footage regarding the making-of the album. Additionally, the album's name sake was revealed to be the address of Cole's childhood home in Fayetteville, North Carolina.[19][20] Cole held a listening session at the home on 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
where he invited a select group of fans to hear the album.[21][22] On February 13, 2015, Cole announced he would further promote the album with a tour called Forest Hills Drive.[23] The tour was divided into three different acts. "Act 1: Hometown", "Act 2: The Journey" and "Act 3: Hollywood". Act 1 started on March 2, 2015, in Eugene, Oregon
Eugene, Oregon
and ended on April 7, 2015, in Providence, Rhode Island, it featured Dreamville artists such as Bas, Cozz
Cozz
and Omen, who were also served as supporting acts on Act 2 and 3.[24] Act 2 started on April 30, 2015, in Zürich, Switzerland and ended on May 18, 2015, in London, England, it featured Jhené Aiko
Jhené Aiko
and Pusha T. Act 3 was the longest leg of the tour, it started on July 12, 2015, in Seattle, Washington and ended on August 29, 2015, in Cole's hometown Fayetteville, North Carolina, and featured Big Sean, YG and Jeremih.[25][26] Cole brought out Drake and Jay-Z
Jay-Z
to perform at the last show in Fayetteville, North Carolina.[27] The tour sold over 570,000 tickets worldwide and grossed $20.4 million.[28] On December 15, 2015, Cole announced a mini-documentary series titled, J. Cole: Road to Homecoming ahead of his special Forest Hills Drive: Homecoming, and released episode one the same day.[29] Episode two was released on December 23.[30] Episode three was released on December 30, Kendrick Lamar, Wale, ASAP Ferg
ASAP Ferg
and Rihanna
Rihanna
made appearances.[31] Episode four was released on January 6, 2016.[32] All episodes were available for free on Vimeo
Vimeo
until January 9. Forest Hills Drive: Homecoming aired January 9, 2016, on HBO
HBO
and HBO
HBO
Now.[33] On January 28, 2016, in celebration of his 31st birthday, Cole released his first live album titled, Forest Hills Drive: Live[34] and also released the music video for the album's final single "Love Yourz".[35] Both Forest Hills Drive: Homecoming and Forest Hills Drive: Live covered his fall 2015 show at the Crown Coliseum
Crown Coliseum
in Fayetteville, North Carolina.[36] Singles[edit] "Apparently" was serviced to American mainstream urban radio, as the album's first single on December 9, 2014.[37] Cole would also go on to release the music video for "Apparently" on the same day.[38] The song has since peaked at number 58 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[39] The song was nominated for Best Rap Performance at the 58th Grammy Awards.[40] The song was also nominated for The Ashford & Simpson Songwriter's Award at the 2015 Soul Train Music Awards[41] and Impact Track at the 2015 BET Hip Hop Awards.[42] The album's second single, "Wet Dreamz", was released to rhythmic contemporary radio on April 14, 2015.[43] On April 21, the music video was released for "Wet Dreamz".[44] The song has since peaked at number 61 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[39] On June 16, 2016, "Wet Dreamz" was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).[45] The album's third single, "No Role Modelz", was sent to urban and rhythmic radio stations on August 4, 2015.[46][47] The song has since peaked at number 36 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[39] On May 2, 2016, in an interview with Larry King Now, actress Nia Long
Nia Long
was asked about a line from the song where Cole raps, "My only regret was too young for Lisa Bonet, my only regret was too young for Nia Long, now all I'm left with is hoes from reality shows, hand her a script the bitch probably couldn't read along." She responded by saying, "He's really not too young, he just doesn't know it."[48] The song was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on May 18, 2016.[49] Cole released the live music video for "Love Yourz" on January 28, 2016, the music video was filmed during his Forest Hills Drive Tour,[35] and on February 27, 2016, "Love Yourz" was released as the album's fourth and final single.[50] The song was included in Sprite's "Obey Your Verse" campaign in 2016 where 16 lyrics from 2Pac, Missy Eliiot and Cole were emblazoned on Sprite soda cans and bottles.[51] The song won Impact Track at the 2016 BET Hip Hop Awards.[52] "Love Yourz" charted at number 34 on the US Twitter
Twitter
Top Tracks on February 13, 2016.[53] The song has since peaked at number 25 on the US R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay.[54] Other songs[edit] On December 5, 2014, Cole released a music video for the song "Intro".[55] On December 13, 2014, rapper Waka Flocka Flame
Waka Flocka Flame
released a freestyle over the song "Fire Squad".[56] On March 23, 2015, a music video was released for "G.O.M.D.".[57] On November 27, 2015, in celebration of Black Friday, Cole and rapper Kendrick Lamar
Kendrick Lamar
released two separate tracks, both titled "Black Friday".[58][59] Lamar remixed Cole's "A Tale of 2 Citiez",[60] while Cole remixed Lamar's single "Alright" from his studio album To Pimp a Butterfly.[61] Rappers Styles P
Styles P
and Juicy J
Juicy J
also released freestyles over "A Tale of 2 Citiez".[62][63] Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings

Aggregate scores

Source Rating

AnyDecentMusic? 6.5/10[64]

Metacritic 67/100[65]

Review scores

Source Rating

AllMusic [66]

Complex [67]

Exclaim! 8/10[68]

Los Angeles Times [69]

The Observer [70]

Pitchfork 6.9/10[71]

Rolling Stone [72]

Spin 6/10[73]

USA Today [74]

XXL 4/5[75]

2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
received generally positive reviews from critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 67, based on 17 reviews.[65] Erin Lowers of Exclaim!
Exclaim!
said, "He shines without any features, standing strong in his delivery and carrying his story to the forefront of the 13-track project. While it may not be his Late Registration, he has definitely graduated into a class of his own."[68] Andre Grant of HipHopDX
HipHopDX
stated, "It is less artistic than it means to be, but it is truer than anything he's ever made. Its narrative, the tropes, and the strategies are completely overcome by the album's terrifying integrity.."[76] Craig Jenkins of Pitchfork said, "2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
is a decent album selling itself as great. It wraps itself in the garments of a classic, but you can see that the tailoring is off."[71] Kellan Miller of XXL stated, "With every quality drop from the self-proclaimed "God", his ceiling will continue to grow and so will fan expectations."[75] David Jeffries of AllMusic said, "2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
comes off as a great, experimental, and advancing mixtape, but it's insider to a fault, as slight as that fault might be."[66] Jesal "Jay Soul" Padania of RapReviews.com said, "He been afforded a rare amount of artistic freedom on 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
and there aren't even any singles, so it's great that he's more or less delivered. But whilst this definitely misses out on classic territory, that doesn't mean it isn't a bloody good album for the most part."[77] Marshall Gu of PopMatters
PopMatters
said, "On 2014 Forest Hills Drive, we've still got the same ol' Cole, but with diminishing returns and without any friends to help him."[78] David Turner of Rolling Stone
Rolling Stone
said, "He speaks some incisive truths about class, race ("Fire Squad") and relationships ("Wet Dreamz"), but those insights are too often undercut by crass humor. The production falls short, too, with dull beats to match his languid flow."[72] Jason Gubbels of Spin said, "Cole's keen sense of injustice registers throughout 2014 Forest Hills Drive, whether slagging white artists for artistic thievery or seething over national media outlets pigeonholing black genius into sports/pop either / ors.... But the absence of "Be Free" still detracts. Unless you're the type of moviegoer who sits patiently through the end titles, feel free to duck out of "Note to Self" a bit early and head over to SoundCloud."[73] Accolades[edit]

Publication Accolade Rank Ref.

Associated Press Associated Press' top albums of 2014

2

[79]

Billboard The 10 Best Rap Albums of 2014

3

[80]

The Boombox 10 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2014

4

[81]

Complex The 50 Best Albums of 2014

4

[82]

Cuepoint My Favorite Hip-Hop Albums of 2014

9

[83]

HipHopDX HipHopDX's Top 25 Albums of 2014 N/A

[84]

HotNewHipHop Hottest Albums of 2014

2

[85]

HuffPost The 23 Best Albums of 2014 N/A

[86]

XXL The 14 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2014 N/A

[87]

50 Great Albums From Rappers With Poetic Flows N/A

[88]

Awards[edit]

Year Ceremony Category Result Ref.

2015 BET Hip Hop Awards Album
Album
of the Year Won [89]

Billboard Music Awards Top Rap Album Won [90]

American Music Awards Best Rap/Hip Hop Album Nominated [91]

2016 58th Grammy Awards Best Rap Album Nominated [92]

Commercial performance[edit] 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling a total of 371,000 copies, with 353,000 copies consisting of whole album sales and the remaining 17,000 copies determined based on individual song sales and streaming data. This is a tracking change that was implemented by Nielsen SoundScan and Billboard in December 2014.[93] 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
became the best first week sales of J. Cole's career, outpacing the first week sales of his second album Born Sinner
Born Sinner
(2013), by 74,000 copies (297,000 copies).[94] In addition to the album's sales toppling early projections by over 100,000 copies, 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
also broke One Direction's record for most album streams on Spotify, being streamed over 15.7 million times in its first week, compared to One Direction's 11.5 million streams.[95] Drake later broke this record with 17.3 million streams for his mixtape If You're Reading This It's Too Late.[96] In its second week, the album sold 135,000 more copies.[97] Cole became one of only six rappers to reach number one with their first three full-length studio albums, others being Drake, Rick Ross, Nelly, DMX and Snoop Dogg.[98] In October 2016, the album was certified double Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for combined sales, streaming and track-sales equivalent of two million units.[99] As of December 2016, the album has sold 1,240,000 copies in the United States.[100] Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length

1. "Intro" Jermaine Cole

J. Cole Ron Gilmore[b]

2:09

2. "January 28th"

Cole Timothy Thomas Andre Thomas Yumi Arai Kunihiko Murai

Cole Nick Paradise and Dré Charles of Team Titans[b]

4:02

3. "Wet Dreamz"

Cole Charles Simmons Roy Hammond

Cole 3:59

4. "03' Adolescence"

Cole William Brown Johnny Burke Jimmy Van Heusen

Willie B 4:24

5. "A Tale of 2 Citiez"

Cole Anderson Hernandez

Vinylz 4:29

6. "Fire Squad"

Cole Hernandez Mark Farner

Cole Vinylz[b]

4:48

7. "St. Tropez"

Cole Mayfield Small Andre Fischer Dave Wolinski Warren Griffin III Jamali Carthorn Danielle Hollis Deon Williams Dewayne Williams Ericka Martin Weldon Irvine

Cole 4:17

8. "G.O.M.D."

Cole Delroy Andrews Deongelo Holmes Eric Jackson Jonathan Smith

Cole 5:01

9. "No Role Modelz"

Cole Kurtis Figueroa Darius Barnes Marvin Whitemon Paul Beauregard Jordan Houston Tenina Stevens Earl Stevens Dannell Stevens Brandt Jones

Phonix Beats Cole[b]

4:52

10. "Hello"

Cole Andrew Wansel Jameel Roberts

Cole Pop Wansel[a] Jproof[a]

3:39

11. "Apparently"

Cole Filippo Trecca Carlos Bess

Cole 4:53

12. "Love Yourz"

Cole Ramon Ibanga, Jr. Carl McCormick Calvin Price

Illmind Cardiak[b] CritaCal[b]

3:31

13. "Note to Self"

Cole Ronald Gilmore

Cole[a] Gilmore[a]

14:35

Total length: 64:39

Notes[101]

^[a] signifies a co-producer ^[b] signifies an additional producer "January 28th" contains additional vocals performed Kaye Fox "A Tale of 2 Citiez" contains additional vocals performed by Kaye Fox, T.S. Rose DeSandies and Yolanda Reneee "St. Tropez" contains additional vocals performed by T.S. Rose DeSandies "No Role Modelz" contains additional vocals performed by Kaye Fox "Hello" contains additional vocals performed by Kaye Fox "Note to Self" contains additional vocals performed by T.S. Rose DeSandies and Yolanda Renee

Sample credits

"January 28th" contains a sample of "Sky Restaurant", written by Yumi Arai and Kunihiko Murai, and performed by Hi-Fi Set. "Wet Dreamz" contains a sample of "Mariya", written by Charles Simmons and performed by Family Circle; and a sample of "Impeach the President", written by Roy Hammond and performed by The Honey Drippers. "03' Adolescence" contains a sample of "Here's That Rainy Day", written by Johnny Burke and Jimmy Van Heuse, and performed by Sonia Rosa and Yuji Ono. "Fire Squad" contains a sample of "Heart Breaker", written by Mark Farner and performed by Aguaturbia. "St. Tropez" contains a sample of "That's All Right With Me", written by Mayfield Small and performed by Esther Phillips; and a sample of "Sister Sanctified", performed by Stanley Turrentine
Stanley Turrentine
and Milt Jackson; and contains an interpolation of "Hollywood", written by Andre Fischer and Dave Wolinski, and performed by Rufus and Chaka Khan. "G.O.M.D." embodies a portion of "Get Low", written by Deongelo Holmes, Eric Jackson and Jonathan Smith, and performed by Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz featuring Ying Yang Twins; and a sample of "Berta, Berta", written by Delroy Andrews and performed by Branford Marsalis. "No Role Modelz" contains a sample of "Don't Save Her", written by Marvin Whitemon, Paul Beauregard, Jordan Houston, Tenina Stevens, Earl Stevens, Dannell Stevens and Brandt Jones, and performed by Project Pat. "Apparently" contains a sample of "La Morte Dell'ermina", written and performed by Filippo Trecca; and a sample of "CB#5", written and performed by Carlos Bess.

Personnel[edit] Credits for 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
adapted from AllMusic.[102]

Jermaine Cole – primary artist, producer Mark Pitts – executive producer Ramon Ibanga, Jr. – producer Anderson Hernandez – producer William "Willie B" Brown – producer Pop Wansel – producer Darius Barnes – producer Ronald Gilmore – additional production, bass, keyboards, producer Jproof – producer Nate Jones – bass David Linaburg – guitar Nate Alford – engineer Travis Antoine – trumpet Anthony Blasko – photography Felton Brown – art direction, graphic design Johnny Burke – composer James Casey – saxophone Chargaux – strings Jeremy Cimino – assistant engineer Damone Coleman – sampling Juro "Mez" Davis – engineer, mixing T.S. Rose Desandies – vocals (background) DJ Dahi – beats Dreamville Records
Dreamville Records
– executive producer Kaye Fox – vocals (background) Julius Garcia – A&R coordination Ibrahim Hamad – A&R James Van Heusen – composer Jeff Gitelman – guitar Mwango "MK" Kasote – A&R Justin Thomas Kay – art direction, graphic design Sean Kellett – assistant engineer Raphael Lee – string engineer Nuno Malo – strings Jack Mason – horn engineer Camille Mathews – product manager Carl McCormick – composer, instrumentation Nervous Reck – sampling Nelly
Nelly
Ortiz – product manager April Pope – product manager Calvin Price – composer, instrumentation Yolanda Renee – vocals (background) Roc Nation
Roc Nation
– executive producer James Rodgers – trombone (bass) Adam Rodney – creative director Team Titans – additional production Andre "Dré Charles" Thomas – additional production Timothy "Nick Paradise" Thomas – additional production

Charts[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (2014–16) Peak position

Australian Albums (ARIA)[103] 40

Belgian Albums ( Ultratop Flanders)[104] 134

Belgian Albums ( Ultratop Wallonia)[105] 198

Canadian Albums (Billboard)[106] 3

New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[107] 25

Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[108] 49

Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[109] 56

UK Albums (OCC)[110] 27

UK R&B Albums (OCC)[111] 1

US Billboard 200[112] 1

US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[113] 1

US Top Catalog Albums (Billboard)[114] 26

Chart (2017) Peak position

Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[115] 34

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2015) Peak position

Canadian Albums (Billboard)[116] 36

US Billboard 200[117] 8

US Digital Albums (Billboard)[118] 4

US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[119] 2

US Rap Albums (Billboard)[120] 2

Chart (2016) Position

Danish Albums (Hitlisten)[121] 81

US Billboard 200[122] 30

US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[123] 15

US Rap Albums (Billboard)[124] 10

Chart (2017) Position

Danish Albums (Hitlisten)[125] 82

Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[126] 99

US Billboard 200[127] 57

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales

Australia (ARIA)[128] Gold 35,000^

Canada (Music Canada)[129] Gold 40,000^

United Kingdom (BPI)[130] Silver 60,000^

United States (RIAA)[99] 2× Platinum 2,000,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone ^shipments figures based on certification alone sales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label Ref.

Australia December 9, 2014

CD digital download

Roc Nation Columbia Universal

[131]

Canada [132]

Germany [133]

Ireland [134]

United Kingdom [135]

United States [136]

New Zealand [137]

Japan [138]

See also[edit]

Hip hop portal

2014 in hip hop music List of Billboard 200
Billboard 200
number-one albums of 2014 List of Billboard number-one R&B/hip-hop albums of 2014

References[edit]

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Further reading[edit]

Pizzo, Mike "DJ" (2015). "How Kendrick Lamar
Kendrick Lamar
& J. Cole
J. Cole
Rebooted Conscious Rap". Cuepoint. 

External links[edit]

2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
at Discogs
Discogs
(list of releases)

v t e

J. Cole

Recording discography Production discography

Studio albums

Cole World: The Sideline Story (2011) Born Sinner
Born Sinner
(2013) 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
(2014) 4 Your Eyez Only
4 Your Eyez Only
(2016)

Extended plays

Truly Yours (2013) Truly Yours 2 (2013)

Mixtapes

The Come Up
The Come Up
(2007) The Warm Up
The Warm Up
(2009) Friday Night Lights (2010)

Live albums

Forest Hills Drive: Live (2016)

Singles

"Who Dat" "Work Out" "Can't Get Enough" "Nobody's Perfect" "Miss America" "Power Trip" "Crooked Smile" "Forbidden Fruit" "She Knows" "Apparently" "G.O.M.D." "Wet Dreamz" "No Role Modelz" "Love Yourz" "Deja Vu" "Neighbors" "Change"

Featured singles

"Just Begun" "All I Want Is You" "A Star Is Born" "Feel Love" "Trouble" "Only Wanna Give It to You" "Party (Remix)" "This Time" "Planes" "No Sleeep" (Remix)

Other songs

"In the Morning" " I'm On
I'm On
2.0" "Let Nas Down" "Immortal"

Concert tours

4 Your Eyez Only
4 Your Eyez Only
World Tour

Related articles

Dreamville Record

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2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
is the third studio album by American rapper J. Cole. It was released on December 9, 2014, by Roc Nation, Dreamville Records
Dreamville Records
and Columbia Records.[2] Recording sessions took place over the whole year, while the production on the album was primarily handled by Cole himself, along with several others such as Illmind, Vinylz, Phonix Beats and Willie B. It was announced three weeks before its release and had very little marketing, with no singles or promotion taking place prior to its release. The album was supported by four singles: "Apparently", "Wet Dreamz", "No Role Modelz" and "Love Yourz". 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
received generally positive reviews from critics who admired its ambitious concept, production and lyrics. The album debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling 353,000 copies in its first week. It was nominated for Best Rap Album
Album
at the 58th Grammy Awards. The album won Album
Album
of the Year at the 2015 BET Hip Hop Awards, and Top Rap Album
Album
at the 2015 Billboard Music Awards. The single "Apparently" was nominated for Best Rap Performance at the 58th Grammy Awards. As of September 2015, the album has sold one million copies in the United States. By doing so, J. Cole
J. Cole
earned his first million-selling album in the country.[3] The album was certified double Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in October 2016.

Contents

1 Background 2 Recording and production 3 Release and promotion

3.1 Singles 3.2 Other songs

4 Critical reception

4.1 Accolades 4.2 Awards

5 Commercial performance 6 Track listing 7 Personnel 8 Charts

8.1 Weekly charts 8.2 Year-end charts

9 Certifications 10 Release history 11 See also 12 References 13 Further reading 14 External links

Background[edit] The album's title is the name of an address from J. Cole's childhood home in Fayetteville, North Carolina, where he was living with his mother, his brother and his stepfather. In 2003, after Cole graduated from high school, the home was foreclosed on while J. Cole
J. Cole
attended St. John's University in New York City. In 2014, the rapper re-bought the house, marking his first home purchase.[4] It is where he wrote some of his earliest raps and became serious about pursuing a career as a musician.[5] The album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
recounts the story of Cole leaving North Carolina, and moving to New York City
New York City
all in pursuit of his dreams; it battles with the transition that were taken in order to find his success and fame within the music industry. The majority of Cole's childhood involved him and his family frequently moving from place to place while their mother tried to make ends meet. Cole now plans on allowing a new family to move into the house he once called home for an extremely cheap renting price, in the hope that they will find their feet in life like he once did.[6] Recording and production[edit] On August 15, 2014, Cole released the song "Be Free", as a response to the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.[7] In an interview with NPR's Microphone Check radio show, Cole revealed that the song was recorded the same week he recorded the song "Intro" from 2014 Forest Hills Drive, but was never intended for the album.[8] In September 2014, during an interview with HipHopDX, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony's manager Steve Lobel revealed Krayzie Bone
Krayzie Bone
and Bizzy Bone recorded a track with Cole for the album, though the song never made the album's final cut.[9] The production on the album was primarily handled by J. Cole, along with its guest productions, including Dreamville's in-house producer Ron Gilmore, DJ Dahi,[10] Illmind,[11] Willie B,[12] Phonix Beats,[13] Vinylz[14] and Pop Wansel, with additional production provided by Cardiak[15] and CritaCal,[16] among others.[17][18] Release and promotion[edit] On November 16, 2014, Cole released a video trailer, where he announced he will be releasing his third album, titled 2014 Forest Hills Drive on December 9. The video also featured footage regarding the making-of the album. Additionally, the album's name sake was revealed to be the address of Cole's childhood home in Fayetteville, North Carolina.[19][20] Cole held a listening session at the home on 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
where he invited a select group of fans to hear the album.[21][22] On February 13, 2015, Cole announced he would further promote the album with a tour called Forest Hills Drive.[23] The tour was divided into three different acts. "Act 1: Hometown", "Act 2: The Journey" and "Act 3: Hollywood". Act 1 started on March 2, 2015, in Eugene, Oregon
Eugene, Oregon
and ended on April 7, 2015, in Providence, Rhode Island, it featured Dreamville artists such as Bas, Cozz
Cozz
and Omen, who were also served as supporting acts on Act 2 and 3.[24] Act 2 started on April 30, 2015, in Zürich, Switzerland and ended on May 18, 2015, in London, England, it featured Jhené Aiko
Jhené Aiko
and Pusha T. Act 3 was the longest leg of the tour, it started on July 12, 2015, in Seattle, Washington and ended on August 29, 2015, in Cole's hometown Fayetteville, North Carolina, and featured Big Sean, YG and Jeremih.[25][26] Cole brought out Drake and Jay-Z
Jay-Z
to perform at the last show in Fayetteville, North Carolina.[27] The tour sold over 570,000 tickets worldwide and grossed $20.4 million.[28] On December 15, 2015, Cole announced a mini-documentary series titled, J. Cole: Road to Homecoming ahead of his special Forest Hills Drive: Homecoming, and released episode one the same day.[29] Episode two was released on December 23.[30] Episode three was released on December 30, Kendrick Lamar, Wale, ASAP Ferg
ASAP Ferg
and Rihanna
Rihanna
made appearances.[31] Episode four was released on January 6, 2016.[32] All episodes were available for free on Vimeo
Vimeo
until January 9. Forest Hills Drive: Homecoming aired January 9, 2016, on HBO
HBO
and HBO
HBO
Now.[33] On January 28, 2016, in celebration of his 31st birthday, Cole released his first live album titled, Forest Hills Drive: Live[34] and also released the music video for the album's final single "Love Yourz".[35] Both Forest Hills Drive: Homecoming and Forest Hills Drive: Live covered his fall 2015 show at the Crown Coliseum
Crown Coliseum
in Fayetteville, North Carolina.[36] Singles[edit] "Apparently" was serviced to American mainstream urban radio, as the album's first single on December 9, 2014.[37] Cole would also go on to release the music video for "Apparently" on the same day.[38] The song has since peaked at number 58 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[39] The song was nominated for Best Rap Performance at the 58th Grammy Awards.[40] The song was also nominated for The Ashford & Simpson Songwriter's Award at the 2015 Soul Train Music Awards[41] and Impact Track at the 2015 BET Hip Hop Awards.[42] The album's second single, "Wet Dreamz", was released to rhythmic contemporary radio on April 14, 2015.[43] On April 21, the music video was released for "Wet Dreamz".[44] The song has since peaked at number 61 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[39] On June 16, 2016, "Wet Dreamz" was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).[45] The album's third single, "No Role Modelz", was sent to urban and rhythmic radio stations on August 4, 2015.[46][47] The song has since peaked at number 36 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[39] On May 2, 2016, in an interview with Larry King Now, actress Nia Long
Nia Long
was asked about a line from the song where Cole raps, "My only regret was too young for Lisa Bonet, my only regret was too young for Nia Long, now all I'm left with is hoes from reality shows, hand her a script the bitch probably couldn't read along." She responded by saying, "He's really not too young, he just doesn't know it."[48] The song was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on May 18, 2016.[49] Cole released the live music video for "Love Yourz" on January 28, 2016, the music video was filmed during his Forest Hills Drive Tour,[35] and on February 27, 2016, "Love Yourz" was released as the album's fourth and final single.[50] The song was included in Sprite's "Obey Your Verse" campaign in 2016 where 16 lyrics from 2Pac, Missy Eliiot and Cole were emblazoned on Sprite soda cans and bottles.[51] The song won Impact Track at the 2016 BET Hip Hop Awards.[52] "Love Yourz" charted at number 34 on the US Twitter
Twitter
Top Tracks on February 13, 2016.[53] The song has since peaked at number 25 on the US R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay.[54] Other songs[edit] On December 5, 2014, Cole released a music video for the song "Intro".[55] On December 13, 2014, rapper Waka Flocka Flame
Waka Flocka Flame
released a freestyle over the song "Fire Squad".[56] On March 23, 2015, a music video was released for "G.O.M.D.".[57] On November 27, 2015, in celebration of Black Friday, Cole and rapper Kendrick Lamar
Kendrick Lamar
released two separate tracks, both titled "Black Friday".[58][59] Lamar remixed Cole's "A Tale of 2 Citiez",[60] while Cole remixed Lamar's single "Alright" from his studio album To Pimp a Butterfly.[61] Rappers Styles P
Styles P
and Juicy J
Juicy J
also released freestyles over "A Tale of 2 Citiez".[62][63] Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings

Aggregate scores

Source Rating

AnyDecentMusic? 6.5/10[64]

Metacritic 67/100[65]

Review scores

Source Rating

AllMusic [66]

Complex [67]

Exclaim! 8/10[68]

Los Angeles Times [69]

The Observer [70]

Pitchfork 6.9/10[71]

Rolling Stone [72]

Spin 6/10[73]

USA Today [74]

XXL 4/5[75]

2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
received generally positive reviews from critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 67, based on 17 reviews.[65] Erin Lowers of Exclaim!
Exclaim!
said, "He shines without any features, standing strong in his delivery and carrying his story to the forefront of the 13-track project. While it may not be his Late Registration, he has definitely graduated into a class of his own."[68] Andre Grant of HipHopDX
HipHopDX
stated, "It is less artistic than it means to be, but it is truer than anything he's ever made. Its narrative, the tropes, and the strategies are completely overcome by the album's terrifying integrity.."[76] Craig Jenkins of Pitchfork said, "2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
is a decent album selling itself as great. It wraps itself in the garments of a classic, but you can see that the tailoring is off."[71] Kellan Miller of XXL stated, "With every quality drop from the self-proclaimed "God", his ceiling will continue to grow and so will fan expectations."[75] David Jeffries of AllMusic said, "2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
comes off as a great, experimental, and advancing mixtape, but it's insider to a fault, as slight as that fault might be."[66] Jesal "Jay Soul" Padania of RapReviews.com said, "He been afforded a rare amount of artistic freedom on 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
and there aren't even any singles, so it's great that he's more or less delivered. But whilst this definitely misses out on classic territory, that doesn't mean it isn't a bloody good album for the most part."[77] Marshall Gu of PopMatters
PopMatters
said, "On 2014 Forest Hills Drive, we've still got the same ol' Cole, but with diminishing returns and without any friends to help him."[78] David Turner of Rolling Stone
Rolling Stone
said, "He speaks some incisive truths about class, race ("Fire Squad") and relationships ("Wet Dreamz"), but those insights are too often undercut by crass humor. The production falls short, too, with dull beats to match his languid flow."[72] Jason Gubbels of Spin said, "Cole's keen sense of injustice registers throughout 2014 Forest Hills Drive, whether slagging white artists for artistic thievery or seething over national media outlets pigeonholing black genius into sports/pop either / ors.... But the absence of "Be Free" still detracts. Unless you're the type of moviegoer who sits patiently through the end titles, feel free to duck out of "Note to Self" a bit early and head over to SoundCloud."[73] Accolades[edit]

Publication Accolade Rank Ref.

Associated Press Associated Press' top albums of 2014

2

[79]

Billboard The 10 Best Rap Albums of 2014

3

[80]

The Boombox 10 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2014

4

[81]

Complex The 50 Best Albums of 2014

4

[82]

Cuepoint My Favorite Hip-Hop Albums of 2014

9

[83]

HipHopDX HipHopDX's Top 25 Albums of 2014 N/A

[84]

HotNewHipHop Hottest Albums of 2014

2

[85]

HuffPost The 23 Best Albums of 2014 N/A

[86]

XXL The 14 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2014 N/A

[87]

50 Great Albums From Rappers With Poetic Flows N/A

[88]

Awards[edit]

Year Ceremony Category Result Ref.

2015 BET Hip Hop Awards Album
Album
of the Year Won [89]

Billboard Music Awards Top Rap Album Won [90]

American Music Awards Best Rap/Hip Hop Album Nominated [91]

2016 58th Grammy Awards Best Rap Album Nominated [92]

Commercial performance[edit] 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200, selling a total of 371,000 copies, with 353,000 copies consisting of whole album sales and the remaining 17,000 copies determined based on individual song sales and streaming data. This is a tracking change that was implemented by Nielsen SoundScan and Billboard in December 2014.[93] 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
became the best first week sales of J. Cole's career, outpacing the first week sales of his second album Born Sinner
Born Sinner
(2013), by 74,000 copies (297,000 copies).[94] In addition to the album's sales toppling early projections by over 100,000 copies, 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
also broke One Direction's record for most album streams on Spotify, being streamed over 15.7 million times in its first week, compared to One Direction's 11.5 million streams.[95] Drake later broke this record with 17.3 million streams for his mixtape If You're Reading This It's Too Late.[96] In its second week, the album sold 135,000 more copies.[97] Cole became one of only six rappers to reach number one with their first three full-length studio albums, others being Drake, Rick Ross, Nelly, DMX and Snoop Dogg.[98] In October 2016, the album was certified double Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for combined sales, streaming and track-sales equivalent of two million units.[99] As of December 2016, the album has sold 1,240,000 copies in the United States.[100] Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length

1. "Intro" Jermaine Cole

J. Cole Ron Gilmore[b]

2:09

2. "January 28th"

Cole Timothy Thomas Andre Thomas Yumi Arai Kunihiko Murai

Cole Nick Paradise and Dré Charles of Team Titans[b]

4:02

3. "Wet Dreamz"

Cole Charles Simmons Roy Hammond

Cole 3:59

4. "03' Adolescence"

Cole William Brown Johnny Burke Jimmy Van Heusen

Willie B 4:24

5. "A Tale of 2 Citiez"

Cole Anderson Hernandez

Vinylz 4:29

6. "Fire Squad"

Cole Hernandez Mark Farner

Cole Vinylz[b]

4:48

7. "St. Tropez"

Cole Mayfield Small Andre Fischer Dave Wolinski Warren Griffin III Jamali Carthorn Danielle Hollis Deon Williams Dewayne Williams Ericka Martin Weldon Irvine

Cole 4:17

8. "G.O.M.D."

Cole Delroy Andrews Deongelo Holmes Eric Jackson Jonathan Smith

Cole 5:01

9. "No Role Modelz"

Cole Kurtis Figueroa Darius Barnes Marvin Whitemon Paul Beauregard Jordan Houston Tenina Stevens Earl Stevens Dannell Stevens Brandt Jones

Phonix Beats Cole[b]

4:52

10. "Hello"

Cole Andrew Wansel Jameel Roberts

Cole Pop Wansel[a] Jproof[a]

3:39

11. "Apparently"

Cole Filippo Trecca Carlos Bess

Cole 4:53

12. "Love Yourz"

Cole Ramon Ibanga, Jr. Carl McCormick Calvin Price

Illmind Cardiak[b] CritaCal[b]

3:31

13. "Note to Self"

Cole Ronald Gilmore

Cole[a] Gilmore[a]

14:35

Total length: 64:39

Notes[101]

^[a] signifies a co-producer ^[b] signifies an additional producer "January 28th" contains additional vocals performed Kaye Fox "A Tale of 2 Citiez" contains additional vocals performed by Kaye Fox, T.S. Rose DeSandies and Yolanda Reneee "St. Tropez" contains additional vocals performed by T.S. Rose DeSandies "No Role Modelz" contains additional vocals performed by Kaye Fox "Hello" contains additional vocals performed by Kaye Fox "Note to Self" contains additional vocals performed by T.S. Rose DeSandies and Yolanda Renee

Sample credits

"January 28th" contains a sample of "Sky Restaurant", written by Yumi Arai and Kunihiko Murai, and performed by Hi-Fi Set. "Wet Dreamz" contains a sample of "Mariya", written by Charles Simmons and performed by Family Circle; and a sample of "Impeach the President", written by Roy Hammond and performed by The Honey Drippers. "03' Adolescence" contains a sample of "Here's That Rainy Day", written by Johnny Burke and Jimmy Van Heuse, and performed by Sonia Rosa and Yuji Ono. "Fire Squad" contains a sample of "Heart Breaker", written by Mark Farner and performed by Aguaturbia. "St. Tropez" contains a sample of "That's All Right With Me", written by Mayfield Small and performed by Esther Phillips; and a sample of "Sister Sanctified", performed by Stanley Turrentine
Stanley Turrentine
and Milt Jackson; and contains an interpolation of "Hollywood", written by Andre Fischer and Dave Wolinski, and performed by Rufus and Chaka Khan. "G.O.M.D." embodies a portion of "Get Low", written by Deongelo Holmes, Eric Jackson and Jonathan Smith, and performed by Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz featuring Ying Yang Twins; and a sample of "Berta, Berta", written by Delroy Andrews and performed by Branford Marsalis. "No Role Modelz" contains a sample of "Don't Save Her", written by Marvin Whitemon, Paul Beauregard, Jordan Houston, Tenina Stevens, Earl Stevens, Dannell Stevens and Brandt Jones, and performed by Project Pat. "Apparently" contains a sample of "La Morte Dell'ermina", written and performed by Filippo Trecca; and a sample of "CB#5", written and performed by Carlos Bess.

Personnel[edit] Credits for 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
adapted from AllMusic.[102]

Jermaine Cole – primary artist, producer Mark Pitts – executive producer Ramon Ibanga, Jr. – producer Anderson Hernandez – producer William "Willie B" Brown – producer Pop Wansel – producer Darius Barnes – producer Ronald Gilmore – additional production, bass, keyboards, producer Jproof – producer Nate Jones – bass David Linaburg – guitar Nate Alford – engineer Travis Antoine – trumpet Anthony Blasko – photography Felton Brown – art direction, graphic design Johnny Burke – composer James Casey – saxophone Chargaux – strings Jeremy Cimino – assistant engineer Damone Coleman – sampling Juro "Mez" Davis – engineer, mixing T.S. Rose Desandies – vocals (background) DJ Dahi – beats Dreamville Records
Dreamville Records
– executive producer Kaye Fox – vocals (background) Julius Garcia – A&R coordination Ibrahim Hamad – A&R James Van Heusen – composer Jeff Gitelman – guitar Mwango "MK" Kasote – A&R Justin Thomas Kay – art direction, graphic design Sean Kellett – assistant engineer Raphael Lee – string engineer Nuno Malo – strings Jack Mason – horn engineer Camille Mathews – product manager Carl McCormick – composer, instrumentation Nervous Reck – sampling Nelly
Nelly
Ortiz – product manager April Pope – product manager Calvin Price – composer, instrumentation Yolanda Renee – vocals (background) Roc Nation
Roc Nation
– executive producer James Rodgers – trombone (bass) Adam Rodney – creative director Team Titans – additional production Andre "Dré Charles" Thomas – additional production Timothy "Nick Paradise" Thomas – additional production

Charts[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (2014–16) Peak position

Australian Albums (ARIA)[103] 40

Belgian Albums ( Ultratop Flanders)[104] 134

Belgian Albums ( Ultratop Wallonia)[105] 198

Canadian Albums (Billboard)[106] 3

New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[107] 25

Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[108] 49

Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[109] 56

UK Albums (OCC)[110] 27

UK R&B Albums (OCC)[111] 1

US Billboard 200[112] 1

US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[113] 1

US Top Catalog Albums (Billboard)[114] 26

Chart (2017) Peak position

Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[115] 34

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (2015) Peak position

Canadian Albums (Billboard)[116] 36

US Billboard 200[117] 8

US Digital Albums (Billboard)[118] 4

US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[119] 2

US Rap Albums (Billboard)[120] 2

Chart (2016) Position

Danish Albums (Hitlisten)[121] 81

US Billboard 200[122] 30

US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[123] 15

US Rap Albums (Billboard)[124] 10

Chart (2017) Position

Danish Albums (Hitlisten)[125] 82

Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[126] 99

US Billboard 200[127] 57

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales

Australia (ARIA)[128] Gold 35,000^

Canada (Music Canada)[129] Gold 40,000^

United Kingdom (BPI)[130] Silver 60,000^

United States (RIAA)[99] 2× Platinum 2,000,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone ^shipments figures based on certification alone sales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label Ref.

Australia December 9, 2014

CD digital download

Roc Nation Columbia Universal

[131]

Canada [132]

Germany [133]

Ireland [134]

United Kingdom [135]

United States [136]

New Zealand [137]

Japan [138]

See also[edit]

Hip hop portal

2014 in hip hop music List of Billboard 200
Billboard 200
number-one albums of 2014 List of Billboard number-one R&B/hip-hop albums of 2014

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Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved December 20, 2014. ^ " J. Cole
J. Cole
Chart History (Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved December 20, 2014. ^ " J. Cole
J. Cole
Chart History (Top Catalog Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved August 21, 2016. ^ " VG-lista – J. Cole". VG-lista. Retrieved October 7, 2017.  ^ "Billboard Top Canadian Albums – Year End Chart". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2016.  ^ " Billboard 200
Billboard 200
– Year End Chart". Billboard. Archived from the original on December 11, 2015. Retrieved February 7, 2016.  ^ "Digital Albums Year End 2015". Billboard. Archived from the original on November 29, 2016. Retrieved January 14, 2017.  ^ "Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums Year End Chart". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2016.  ^ "Billboard Rap Albums Year End Chart". Billboard. Archived from the original on December 18, 2016. Retrieved February 7, 2016.  ^ " Album
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Top-100 2016" (in Danish). Hitlisten.NU. Archived from the original on December 30, 2016. Retrieved December 31, 2016.  ^ "Top Billboard 200
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Albums – Year-End 2016". Billboard. Archived from the original on December 8, 2016. Retrieved December 9, 2016.  ^ "Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums – Year-end Chart". Billboard. Retrieved December 16, 2016.  ^ "Billboard Rap Albums – Year-end Chart". Billboard. Retrieved December 16, 2016.  ^ " Album
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ARIA Charts
– Accreditations – 2018 Albums". Australian Recording Industry Association.  Missing or empty url= (help); access-date= requires url= (help) ^ "Canadian album certifications – J. Cole
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– 2014 Forest Hills Drive". Music Canada.  ^ "British album certifications – J. Cole
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– 2014 Forest Hills Drive". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved August 14, 2015.  Enter 2014 Forest Hills Drive
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Forest Hills Drive
by J Cole". iTunes. Archived from the original on February 29, 2016. Retrieved February 11, 2016.  ^ "iTunes – Music – 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
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Forest Hills Drive
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Forest Hills Drive
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Further reading[edit]

Pizzo, Mike "DJ" (2015). "How Kendrick Lamar
Kendrick Lamar
& J. Cole
J. Cole
Rebooted Conscious Rap". Cuepoint. 

External links[edit]

2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
at Discogs
Discogs
(list of releases)

v t e

J. Cole

Recording discography Production discography

Studio albums

Cole World: The Sideline Story (2011) Born Sinner
Born Sinner
(2013) 2014 Forest Hills Drive
Forest Hills Drive
(2014) 4 Your Eyez Only
4 Your Eyez Only
(2016)

Extended plays

Truly Yours (2013) Truly Yours 2 (2013)

Mixtapes

The Come Up
The Come Up
(2007) The Warm Up
The Warm Up
(2009) Friday Night Lights (2010)

Live albums

Forest Hills Drive: Live (2016)

Singles

"Who Dat" "Work Out" "Can't Get Enough" "Nobody's Perfect" "Miss America" "Power Trip" "Crooked Smile" "Forbidden Fruit" "She Knows" "Apparently" "G.O.M.D." "Wet Dreamz" "No Role Modelz" "Love Yourz" "Deja Vu" "Neighbors" "Change"

Featured singles

"Just Begun" "All I Want Is You" "A Star Is Born" "Feel Love" "Trouble" "Only Wanna Give It to You" "Party (Remix)" "This Time" "Planes" "No Sleeep" (Remix)

Other songs

"In the Morning" " I'm On
I'm On
2.0" "Let Nas Down" "Immortal"

Concert tours

4 Your Eyez Only
4 Your Eyez Only
World Tour

Related articles

Dreamville Record

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