Producer: J. Cole, Elite
J. Cole: “That was made around the time when I was really buzzing online. All I had out was The Warm Up and that was out maybe seven months before that. The time was coming up for the S.O.B.’s show in New York.
“We had a great buzz and I think the label was looking for a single that they could release. ‘Who Dat’ was the first song that I did that had super high energy and sounded like something that they could potentially use. So I performed it at S.O.B.’s and they went nuts.
“I made that in Quad Studios in New York City. Me and Elite made the beat. I started with these drums and put the sample over the drums. It was just natural how it came together. [It’s a bonus track because it] connects the past two years to everything [.”
Mark Pitts (J. Cole’s Manager): “At one point, [of his album happened] when we were trying to stay true to what he does. Understand, a lot of the times, the label may have a vision of what they want. They want to get more commercial songs and Cole wasn’t making those. He was making those emotional records. Then, I felt like he started saying he had to make [commercial] type of records.
“He started trying to make [commercial] records. It works sometimes but sometimes it doesn’t work. It could also throw you off and then you go back to the drawing board like, ‘Where am I going wrong?’ They you go back to the original format like, ‘That’s the formula that’s been working for me.’
“[With ‘Who Dat’], that was the beginning of it. To me, it was always not necessarily what the charts say. Sometimes, it’s what it does for your path. It didn’t have a lot of radio success, but it continued to form the path.
“As an artist, I definitely have seen the change in him. He definitely has grown. He’s definitely understanding. He can look himself in the mirror and if he messed up or bumped his head, he’s not pointing fingers. He knows when he’s bumped his head. He takes responsibility for things. I can see he’s always been that way for as long as I’ve know him.”