Why I have Beef with J. Cole's New Tour

BY: YESENIA JONES

The Fayetteville native, J. Cole, recently announced that he will hold performances at over 57 locations across the country this summer following the release of his platinum-selling album “4 Your Eyez Only”. The tour is set to begin in June and end in late 2017.

J. Cole’s previous tour, the 2014 Forest Hills Drive tour, grossed over $16.4 million according to Billboard. Throughout the course of this tour, J. Cole also sold out some of the largest arenas in the country, including the Madison Square Garden.

As a North Carolina native and huge J. Cole fan, I was extremely excited about the release of his new album and the announcement of the 2017 tour dates. J. Cole is set to perform at the Cone Denim Entertainment center in Greensboro, NC. Being the dedicated fan that I am, I made sure that I was on Ticketmaster's website on the day tickets went on sale to the general public, in order to make sure that I would be one of the first patrons to buy a ticket. As a result of the small venue and pre-sale, I was unable to get a ticket.

The Cone Denim entertainment theater is a small venue, meant to provide an intimate setting between concertgoers and the artist. While I appreciate J. Cole’s initiative to maintain that intimate relationship between himself and his home state fans, I found it disappointing that he did not choose a venue that would accommodate more of his NC fans. In knowing that J. Cole sold out the Crown Coliseum during the 2014 Forest Hills Drive Tour, I expected him to choose a theater in North Carolina that was larger, or at least have multiple shows in NC.

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As an artist who often raps about where he is from and reps local colleges such as the University of North Carolina at Chapel hill and Fayetteville State University, I found it almost hypocritical of J. Cole to hold larger shows in areas such as Chicago and New York. I’d imagine that one of J. Cole's largest fan bases is in North Carolina as a result of our pride for our local artists.

J.Cole’s Dollar and a Dream tour in 2014 featured him playing six venues for the small ticket fee of one dollar. He then brought the tour back in 2015, performing special shows in North Carolina's capital city, Raleigh. The venues on this tour were all small theaters that provided that intimate feel in comparison to the larger venues he normally performs at during his regularly scheduled tours. This was a more effective way of providing tickets that were affordable and multiple chances to experience seeing him perform, in cities that were close to home. I can only hope that the Dollar and a Dream tour makes its 2017 return, after the 4 Your Eyez Only tour ends.

Cover: Flickr