7 Things We Learned From J. Cole's 'The Off-Season' Documentary

Before the release of his next project 'The Off-Season,' J. Cole released a new documentary called 'Applying Pressure: The Off-Season.' Here's what we learned.

J. Cole

Image via YouTube/J. Cole

J. Cole

On May 10, J. Cole dropped a new documentary called Applying Pressure: The Off-Season. The 12-minute video arrives just days before the release of his highly-anticipated project, The Off-Season. 

In the documentary, J. Cole details his mindset going into the project and discusses getting comfortable in the rap industry while fighting to reach his highest skill set and potential. He also goes into detail about being a father.

Applying Pressure: The Off-Season is fairly short, but in just a handful of minutes, Cole drops a lot of gems that shed insight on the reclusive rapper’s mindset right now, while getting fans excited for his next project, which is scheduled to drop on May 14. Here are seven things we learned from the documentary.

'The Off-Season' title has a deeper meaning

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Last year, J. Cole announced the title of his next project, The Off-Season. In conversation with 21 Savage, he details the story and meaning behind the title. Reflecting on a period in his life just before the release of his 2009 mixtape, The Warm Up, he begins: “I had just graduated college. I was broke. I was struggling to pay my rent. I ain’t have no job. And I was kinda being complacent because I had crazy music and I was kinda chillin, like as if that was good enough to get me to where I needed to go.” Then he had a realization. He was standing in the backyard outside of a party when his friends approached him, and he says it turned into a sort of intervention as they questioned him about his rap career. Though he admits he was standoffish at first, it inspired him to look back on other goals (like basketball) that he hadn’t given his full focus. “So, it was like, yo, do you really want to look back 10 or 20 years from now with this music shit and be like, the reason you didn’t make it in music is because you didn’t put in the work?’” After answering his own question with a “no,” he pushed himself to go harder. That’s how he created The Warm Up, and he says he applied that same energy and thought process to creating The Off-Season. “I put myself through drills. I really tried to work on my craft to reach new heights and push myself. That’s why I called it The Off-Season.”

He’s been fighting against comfort for the past 5 years

J. Cole

Fatherhood changed his schedule

J. Cole

He used his year of features for growth

J. Cole

He’s been sitting on some of these songs for years

J. Cole studio

He has a little more tinkering to do on ‘The Fall-Off’

J. Cole

He hints at the final stages of his career after ‘The Fall Off’

J. Cole documentary

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