Last year they said albums weren’t selling well. Not hip hop albums, just albums (Taylor Swift was the only artist go sell over a million albums in 214). We’ve known for years that “conscious” rap doesn’t sell. And, we also ‘know’ that if you don’t promote your album with singles and news worthy content leading up to its release, there is no way anyone will ever support (or know) about it. Clearly none of these things apply to J Cole.
Forrest Hills Drive, Cole’s third studio album has officially gone platinum. Not only that, but it is the first album without a guest feature to sell over a million copies in 25 years; across any genre.
He’s first album Cole World: The Sideline Story sold 735, 000. The second album Born Sinner sold slightly less than the first album with a total 720,000 sold. Both of those joints were more publicised, marketed, and accumulated those numbers in a much longer time span than it took for Forest Hills (releases 9 December 2014) to get to platinum status.
This accomplishment is important because in a time where the music itself and the avenues, methods and mediums used to distribute it are being redefined and experimented with, Cole has demonstrated that convention is not necessarily the only way.
Wonder what the year holds for upcoming releases and sales numbers.