“Heaven’s EP” by J. Cole
Anyone familiar with J. Cole’s artistry likely doesn’t need to be told that he’s one of the more intellectual rappers out there, a fact that he actually acknowledges in the lyrics. And in this particular outing, he uses said gift to render a self-analytical piece.
As expected, there’s a whole lot going on therein. And amidst all of the allusions to the ‘hood and the pressures of fame and what have you, perhaps the permeating theme can be ascertained as pointing to J. Cole’s drive as an artist.
He comes from an environment where, as depicted, a person is more likely to be incarcerated than, say go to college. And such an assertion is not really about promoting formal education but rather to prove a point. And the point in question is that people who come from such a background aren’t socialized in a way where they are encouraged to use their inner gifts to maximum potential. So Jermaine making it out of the ‘hood is an anomaly, so to speak.
In other words, yes, his “success” may be due to “effort”. But at the same time, it’s not like he’s trying to be all up on the red carpet or anything. Or rather let’s say that such is not where he feels most comfortable. So if the public is in fact able to perceive his awkwardness, if you will, now he’s explaining the reason for it.
The Issue of Features
Of interest to side note is that whereas J. Cole is pretty much unanimously considered to be one of the best contemporary rappers in America, neither Kanye West nor Drake enlisted him to participate on their recent, 20+ track albums, respectively being Donda and Certified Lover Boy. And what actually brings that fact to mind is later on in “Heaven’s EP”, Cole touches upon, in a braggadocious manner, the subject of features.
But while we’re on the topic of Drake, earlier in the song J. Cole acknowledges Drizzy as being one of only two rappers, along with Kendrick Lamar, who is better than he is, in a manner of speaking. So what we’re trying to get at is certain segments of this piece may be Cole’s own reaction to somewhat surprisingly, now that we think about it, not being invited, it would seem, to participate on either of the aforementioned albums.
What is the meaning of “Heaven’s EP”?
Meanwhile concerning the title of this song, the word “heaven” doesn’t appear in the lyrics, nor does the wording seem to be religious in nature at all. But as we have pointed out numerous times in the past, religious-based words are being used more and more frequently and casually by professional musicians these days. So, it’s not abundantly clear why J. Cole decided to name the song so.
Facts about “Heaven’s EP”
“Heaven’s EP” is not only the name of a forthcoming album J. Cole has coming out but also the literal name of the project’s title track and lead single, which Roc Nation and Cole’s own label, Dreamville released on 21 September 2021.
J. Cole is the sole writer of this piece, with its producers being Jean Bleu, Leon Thomas III, FaxOnly and Anthoine Walters.
This track is officially recognized as being the remix of a song Drake dropped a couple of weeks earlier as part of the aforementioned Certified Lover Boy entitled Pipe Down. And both tunes feature a sample of Jazzy Belle (1996), i.e. one of Outkast’s earliest singles.
As far as Cole not being amongst the plethora of artists featured on Donda, it seems that he and Yeezus actually have a back-and-forth dating back at least to the mid-2010s.
Interesting to Note!
Earlier in 2021, J. Cole’s sixth studio album, The Off-Season, came out. And thus far all six of his studio albums have been Billboard 200 chart toppers. Additionally, Jermaine has scored a number of multi-platinum hits throughout the 2010s. However, one of the reasons this song may be considered a surprise release is because as of late, the rapper has actually been generating more headlines due to embarking on a professional basketball career, playing for a team in Rwanda.
Said contract only lasted for three games, in which he averaged 5 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists. And being in Africa would also likely explain why Jermaine notes that he wrote this song ‘kickin’ his feet up somewhere tropical’ late in its sole verse.