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CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - FEBRUARY 17: Rapper J. Cole performs during halftime during the NBA All-Star game where Team Giannis faces Team LeBron as part of the 2019 NBA All-Star Weekend at Spectrum Center on February 17, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.

J. Cole’s 2023 feature run has been so insane we’re almost not upset with him for not dropping another album. So far this year, he has done seven features, many of which are not from hip-hop artists. Cole has challenged himself to work with artists in R&B, Afrobeats, dancehall, K-Pop, and more.

J. Cole Clarifies Feature Charge

A rumor that has been going around since 2019 has finally been debunked. In a conversation on Lil Yachty’s show A Safe Space Podcast, Cole clarified his 2019 lyric on Bia’s “The London” where he made a guest appearance.

“I left a flock of rappers dead and buried /A verse from me is like eleven birds/ Just did the math, that’s like two thousand dollars every word,” he rapped on the track.

“A lot of my bars be really on point, but man that’s just a flex. I’m not gonna charge [artists] $2000 a word,” he told Yachty and his co-host Mitch.

The North Carolina rapper told Lil Boat that “does not even charge artists for a verse.” He agrees to be on artists’ songs if he’s “inspired to do it.”

Cole and Yachty worked together earlier this year on “The Secret Recipe.”

What’s Next For J. Cole?

Cole has been teasing his album The Fall Off for quite some time.  This year alone, he has mentioned it in two of his guest verses. He first mentioned it in Summer Walker’s “To Cole From Summer.” The song is the intro to her EP Clear 2: Soft Life.

“The bitches that’s hatin’, they sit around waitin’ for you to fall off, like the album I’m makin,'” he raps.

The second time he references the album recently was in his verse for Drake’s “First Person Shooter” — the sixth track on For All The Dogs.

“I’m namin’ the album The Fall Off, it’s pretty ironic ’cause it ain’t no fall off for me,” Cole raps.

However, we don’t think that Cole is ready to hang it up just yet. In his feature on J-Hope’s “On the Street,” he set the premise for what he’s been doing all year.

“I contemplate if I should wait to hand over the crown/And stick around for a bit longer, I got a strange type of hunger/The more I eat, the more it gets stronger.”

Take a look at seven of his best features this year below:

  • 7. Bas, "Passport Bros"

    Cole and Bas are ready to party worldwide in their latest collaboration, “Passport Bros.” The single arrived on July 19 and is the second single from Bas’ upcoming fourth studio album We Only Talk About Real S— When We’re F—– Up. The project is expected to arrive sometime this year. As for Cole’s verse on “Passport Bros,” the North Carolina rapper is having fun as he brags about partying out in Barcelona, becoming the partial owner of the Charlotte Hornets, and flexing on pretty girls playing his fire feature on Lil Durk’s “All My Life.” This was not Cole and Bas’ first collaboration as they previously worked together on “Cousins,” “Night Job,” and “Tribe.”

    J. Cole’s best line: “The news just dropped, I’m a partial owner/What can I say?/Tell Coach Cliff to suit me up and I’ll play, I’m winning.”

  • 6. Gucci Mane, "There I Go"

    Cole kicks off Gucci Mane’s “There I Go” with a very relaxed tone, and Gucci swoops in to bring back up the energy. “There I Go” was released on August 25 and is the fifth single from Gucci’s album Breath of Fresh Air. This was the first time the two artists worked together.

    J. Cole’s best line: “I’m in some dirty-a– kicks watchin’ YouTube/ I’m cuttin’ grass in designer, like it’s Fubu.”

  • 5. J-Hope, "On the Street"

    Cole teamed up with BTS member J-Hope on “On The Street,” which was released on March 3. Cole taps into his spirituality in his verse as he explains to his friend who does not believe in God how certain things exist “as if the universe ain’t enough.” He proceeds to rap about a potential retirement but only debates for a moment before realizing his hunger for the game is still there.

    J. Cole’s best line: “I contemplate if I should wait to hand over the crown/And stick around for a bit longer, I got a strange type of hunger/The more I eat, the more it gets stronger.”

  • 4. Burna Boy, "Thanks"

    Afrobeat Cole has entered the chat. The Dreamville boss hopped on Burna Boy’s “Thanks” from the Nigerian artist’s I Told Them… album. Cole is far from humble with his brag-heavy lines claiming he and Burna are the best out there, comparing the duo to NBA champs Shaq and Kobe, who led the Los Angeles Lakers to three consecutive NBA championships in 2000, 2001, and 2002. It was the first time the two got together for a song, but Burna said it wouldn’t be the last.

    “We did get in the studio, but we didn’t make ‘Thanks’ that day,” he told Complex. “We made something else. And yeah, he sent the verse for ‘Thanks’ a few weeks later.”

    J. Cole’s best line: “Cole and Burna, Shaq and Kobe/ Winnin’ a ring, then we gon’ repeat and three-peat.”

  • 3. Lil Durk, "All My Life"

    Cole and Lil Durk gave the people an uplifting song for the year with their verses on “All My Life.” Both rappers speak on positivity, and the melodic chorus adds to the inspiring message of the song. It was the first time the two have worked together, and Durk said that Cole “smoked” him on the record in a conversation with Complex. The track is the lead single to Durk’s third studio album Almost Healed. The song debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

    J. Cole’s best line: “I got a new rule/If you ain’t never posted a rapper when he was alive/ You can’t post about him after he get hit”

  • 2. Summer Walker, "To Summer, From Cole" (Audio Hug)

    Cole is playing the role of the big cousin or big brother to Summer in “To Summer, From Cole.” While the record is the intro to Summer’s EP Clear 2: Soft Life, the Atlanta songstress provides the background vocals as she sings, “Call me when you need some…love.” Throughout the song, Cole praises Summer for her strength in dealing with the chaos found in the music industry, problems in romantic relationships, familial issues, and how she is still throughout everything holding it down and is an inspiration as a mother of three and artist. In the song, Cole thanks Summer for her patience with them working together on a track, and it was definitely worth the wait.

    J. Cole’s best line: “The bitches that’s hatin’, they sit around waitin’ for you to fall off, like the album I’m makin'”

  • 1. Drake, "First Person Shooter"

    Cole is on fire, and he knows it. “First Person Shooter” arrived on Drake’s For All The Dogs in October. Throughout the song, Cole gives a shoutout to his peers who sit alongside him on hip-hop’s throne. The North Carolina name-drops Drake and Kendrick Lamar as the only two other MCs in the game to be next to him. Cole gave Drake another compliment in the song rapping “Rhymin’ with me is the biggest mistake/The Spider-Man meme is me lookin’ at Drake.” This was the third time the MCs have worked together following 2011’s “In The Morning” and 2019’s “Jodi Freestyle.” “First Person Shooter” debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 which earned Cole his first top-charter and Drake his 13th.

    J. Cole’s best line: “Love when they argue the hardest MC/Is it K-Dot? Is it Aubrey? Or me?/We the big three like we started a league, but right now, I feel like Muhammad Ali”

    Honorable mention: “Rhymin’ with me is the biggest mistake/The Spider-Man meme is me lookin’ at Drake”

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