Cole's world just got a lot brighter. After news officially broke that
"J. Cole's success is testament to amazing artist development and Cole's hard work," Hov said in a press release issued to MTV News. "I want to congratulate him on a #1 album and more importantly a great body of work."
The Fayetteville, North Carolina, MC/producer moved more than 217,000 copies of his debut in its first week of release, beating out Blink-182's long-awaited Neighborhoods album.
"J. Cole personifies humility and grace with edge and depth. As an MC, his point of view speaks to and represents me. I'm proud and blessed to be a part of his journey!" Mark Pitts, president of urban music at Sony /JIVE and CEO of Bystorm Entertainment, said in the statement.
Cole first attracted a buzz in 2007 with The Come Up mixtape. In 2009, he quietly signed to Jay-Z's label before releasing his Warm Up tape. The rapper is a former XXL Freshmen cover subject, and along with appearing on his boss Hov's Blueprint III, he also toured with Rihanna this year. But even with all of his accomplishments, Cole's debut went through a series of starts and stops before dropping on September 27.
On the strength of his singles "Work Out," "Can't Get Enough" (with Trey Songz) and "In the Morning" (with Drake), Cole built anticipation for his first album. In an interview with MTV2's Sucker Free, Cole spoke about the excitement he would feel to have his LP in stores: "I can remember going to get so many albums and just the fact that mines is one of those.