J. Cole has graced 2019 with his first track “MIDDLE CHILD.” And the single didn’t disappoint.
Soon after the single was released on streaming platforms on Wednesday night the T-Minus-produced record generated a lot of buzz among both fans and critics.
The conversation was a lot of discussion surrounding Cole’s shoutouts to LeBron James, Kodak Black, 21 Savage, and Drake, whom Cole referred to as a “legend”:
“Just put the Rollie right back on my wrist
This watch came from Drizzy, he gave me a gift
Back when the rap game was prayin’ like this
To act like two legends cannot coexist”
But there was another heavy-weight who was immediately roped into the conversation: Kanye West.
Though Kanye was nevet mentiined in the song, many fans suggest Cole was taking shots at the Yandhi rapper by referencing his ongoing beef with Drizzy:
With lines like
“But I’d never beef with a nigga for nothin’
If I smoke a rapper, it’s gon’ be legit
It won’t be for clout, it won’t be for fame
It won’t be ’cause my shit ain’t sellin’ the same
It won’t be to sell you my latest lil’ sneakers
It won’t be ’cause some nigga slid in my lane”
Is Cole suggesting Kanye’s antics were just publicity stunts? Moves intended to create hype around his music projects and Yeezy sneakers? Some Twitter users are convinced this is exactly what Cole was trying to get across.
The Dreamville rapper has had an interesting relationship with Kanye over the years. In his 2016 track “False Prophets,” Cole spoke about one of his former heroes who had fallen from grace after surrounding himself with “fake” women and “yes men.” Fans suspected Cole was talking about Kanye and his new life with the Kardashians:
With lines like;
“I believed him when he said his shit was purer/And he the type of n***a swear he real but all around him’s fake/The women, the dick-riders, you know, the yes men/Nobody with the balls to say somethin’ to contest him/So he grows out of control.”
Charlamagne tha God touched on Cole and Kanye’s relationship during a 2018 Breakfast Club broadcast. The host claimed Kanye believed Cole was constantly dissing him in his records; but a couple weeks later, Kanye posted a screenshot of a four-minute phone call with Cole. He captioned it, “we got love.”
You can check out some of the reactions to Cole’s suspected lines aimed at Kanye
— Sean Johnson (@Seans_Johnson) January 24, 2019
How Kanye looking at J Cole after listening to Middle Child pic.twitter.com/JF4g9ihzoP
— Josiah Johnson (@KingJosiah54) January 24, 2019
J. Cole said “The game is off-balance, I’m back on my shit”. And now this picture makes so much sense. He wants to bring balance to the universe. He’s got the gauntlet. J. Cole is the rap game Thanos. Stop playing yourselves like he ain’t the 🐐!!!!!! pic.twitter.com/D1r3h8tv4Z
— deli (@Marc_DLT) January 24, 2019
J Cole “But I'd never beef with a nigga for nothin'
If I smoke a rapper, it's gon' be legit
It won't be for clout, it won't be for fame
It won't be to sell you my latest lil' sneakers”
— Masulani Zulu (@Masulani_) January 24, 2019
“Heaven or Hell, you choose.. Freedom or jail, you lose.. I can’t stop, I’m as hot as the devil’s shoes.. Overcame a lowlife status to blow like Gladys.. Ahead of my time, like I lived my whole life backwards..”
J. Cole just different mann.
— Instagram: AskTrillAC (@TheTrillAC) January 24, 2019