Watch J. Cole revisit his old Queens apartment in MTV's 'Life & Rhymes: J. Cole -- 'Crooked Smile'' documentary.
J. Cole might be signed to Jay Z's Roc Nation, and he might have worked with everyone from Miguel to Kendrick Lamar to TLC, but the 28-year-old performer wasn't always so rich in famous friends. Before the success of "Crooked Smile" and his 2013 full-length, Born Sinner (which earned an Album Of The Year BET Award nom), J. was just another young hip-hop hopeful trying to get by and hustling hard in Jamaica, Queens.
In the upcoming reboot of MTV's behind-the-scenes "Life & Rhymes" documentary, which premieres tonight at 7:53 p.m. ET on Jcole.mtv.com, J. Cole will return to his old apartment in Jamaica, where he'll show us how he struggled as a musician and tell the story of how he wrote his smash hit, "Crooked Smile."
Find out more about "Life & Rhymes: J. Cole -- 'Crooked Smile''' after the jump.
Introducing the recently revamped "Life And Rhymes" on Rapfix, J. Cole delved into what fans will see on his journey back to Queens: "We went back to Mohammed crib. I talk about 'Mohammed crib' in "Power Trip' -- that was my last place in college -- so my senior year in college I was there, and then for the broke, struggling period of barely surviving. So we went back to that crib, shot scenes there, talked about the song "Crooked Smile, all about how I made that song, because it was really a journey."
What J. says about his "Mohammed crib" in "Power Trip" rings true; in fact, if you reread the lyrics, it's almost like another preview of what we'll see on tonight's documentary: "OK, back when I was sleepin' in my mama's crib/ Even back then when I was up there in Mohammed crib/ Payin' $1700 for the rent, money well spent."
Money well spent, indeed. Despite his humble beginnings, J. wouldn't be back there telling his story from the other side of the fence without that Jamaica apartment.
Get the rest of the story when "Life And Rhymes" premieres on jcole.mtv.com at 7:53p.m. ET.!
+ Learn more about J. Cole's "Life & Rhymes: J. Cole -- 'Crooked Smile'" in an exclusive Rapfix interview, and don't miss "Life And Rhymes: J. Cole -- 'Crooked Smile'" at Jcole.mtv.com.
Photo credit: MTV