Not talking that “unbothered” funny meme type attitude, but that DGAF facial expression one gives when the bill collector raises their voice on the phone. Not quite the Quincy Jones “I’m 80 plus and I’ll say what I want” DGAF but more like “I’m in my 30s, married with a kid and don’t have time to care about your feelings”type DGAF.
“J.Cole should pick better beats, that way he’ll be just as hot as other rappers!!!”
“J.Cole looks like a homeless healthy person !!!”
“JCole’s music is so boring that it’ll cause you to fall asleep at the wheel when driving!!!”
Instead of caring about the latest trend on social media, Jermaine Lamarr Cole is walking barefoot on a distant island wearing a bright red fur coat with tan colored cut off khakis, drinking coconut water while twisting one of his hair locks. Nothing is more clear of J.Cole’s DGAF than his 5th album KOD which according to the North Carolina MC himself stands for:
“Kids On Drugs
Kill Our Demons
The rest of the album I leave to your interpretation….”
J.Cole takes the listener on his usual introspective ride of self-reflection while sippin on a latte type vibe. The album is lyrically lead with rhymes that flow like a Holden Caulfield therapy session. KOD is an album from an MC that is no longer trying to find a niche, his confidence and hair have both grown to become an artist that appears to have found a balance. The song Once An Addict takes a darker yet deeper level of vulnerability from J.Cole who’s usual praise of his mother(like Apparently) to now expressing the heartache effects of her drug and alcohol addiction. J.Cole DGAF with each line painting a visual portrait of complex emotions of love, hurt and resentment that mirror his mixed feelings of women in past songs where one minute they’re praised and the next line being invited to oral please his private parts. The track Brackets speaks on J.Cole’s issues with fame while dealing with a strong case of survivor’s remorse and now being a target for other rappers in a blend that is delivered like a letter being read.
As an MC, J.Cole shares the new school leader MT Rushmore with both Drake and Kendrick Lamar, however; as an artist, he(J.Cole) has displayed more growth over the years than both of his peers. KOD is a representation of timeless music that cannot be created by duplicating popular waves but by the brutal truth from within. An example of harsh honesty is the cleverly titled “Kevin’s Heart” which to some may sound like a melody of excuses for infidelity but instead, J.Cole executes the “how & why” in noteworthy detail. Plus, the bounce beat hook is too catchy to care about a celebrity who got caught slippin feelings. Yea, J.Cole DGAF about what you think but he wants you to hear what he has to say. He could care less about online “hippie” jokes because he is too busy pointing and laughing how you’re faking for the gram outside your glass house while playing the song ATM in the background. On the track 1985, J.Cole may be the first rapper to open hand Joe Clark slap someone and immediately hug them afterward. J.Cole raps on the track like an elder spokesman delivering cautionary wisdom to the younger YouTube rappers about how the white fans see them and the difference between being “hot for the moment” vs having a “legendary career.”
J.Cole’s music isn’t for everyone but everyone is invited to listen to his music. From the “I only listen to real Hip Hop fan” to the mumble tat face rapper fan, anybody can open their ear and gain a piece of perspective. KOD is the voice of a watcher MC who observes society flaws and delivers a report card every two years. Flow wise KOD has strong rhymes with clever wordplay that is precise and doesn’t take a deep google search to understand while the production at times can sound repetitive. As an album, KOD doesn’t match the excitement that Born Sinner provided sonically, however; it has more depth in the understanding of J.Cole’s soul that he bares willingly. KOD represent the final stage of a metamorphosis that has taken place within J.Cole since Forest Hills Drive of an MC who has found his center as a human being and DGAF’ness as an artist.