J. Cole thanks his fans on the fifth anniversary of "The Warm Up."
On the fifth anniversary of his breakthrough mixtape,Â The Warm Up, J. Cole has released a message for the fans who have been there for him since the beginning. Posted on the rapper's official website, the text finds Cole talking about the development of that original project and how the music elevated him in the industry.
In support of the anniversary, Cole is also bringing back his "Dollar & A Dream" tour this summer, and performing the mixtape from front-to-back. Dates and ticket information are not available for the tour just yet, but rest assured that they'll be posted as soon as they are. [UPDATED BELOW]
Read the official text below:
5 years ago, we started a journey together. On June 15th, 2009 I released The Warm Up to a few who were waiting patiently for it. Full of my dreams, fears and predictions, it resonated with you right away. Over the next year I watched it grow legs and spread at an unbelievable pace all because you felt it so much. Five years later, I couldnât be more proud of itâs impact. Thank you.
The Warm Up is a declaration of dedication to Greatness. Told from the perspective of a kid who wants more than what his city has to offer him. The crime. The stagnation. He wants more from the girls he dates. He wants out of Muhammadâs house. He refuses to let anyone tell him he canât dream. That he wonât make it. He believes in himself. He dedicates his life to his craft, because heâs finally realized that the work that you put in today has a direct and absolute impact on the life you live tomorrow.
You heard the passion, you heard the stories, and you believed in him too. You rooted for him. And yourâe still rooting. My thoughts today come from my observations over the past 5 years. I understand now that youâre rooting for him, rooting for me, because you are also rooting for yourself. You realize that this society kills dreams and encourages you to conform. To settle for the block, to join the army, to become a lawyer when you really want to paint, to get comfortable in the projects, to slave away at a 9-5 you hate because it pays decent; to become complacent with safety. The Warm Up says, âFuck that. I will be Greater. Watch me.â
I think about all the times over the past few years that one of you has said to me, âyouâre the reason I went to college,â âyo, The Warm Up got me through some hard times,â âgot me through law school,â âmed school,â âhigh school,â âThe Warm Up changed my life.â
I imagine that 5 years ago we all wanted more. The Warm Up was just something that put music and words to what we were feeling. As I write this Iâm on a plane from Sydney, Australia back to New York City. Music has taken me around the world now, doing shows in places I never thought I would be. Iâm grateful.
Iâm wondering where you are today. 5 years later. The Warm Up dropped when some of you were upperclassmen in college. Iâm hoping that youâve found a career doing some shit you love, something that makes you happy. Maybe you needed more time to figure it out. Grad School? Or maybe youâre back in your parents crib trying to regroup. Everything will be OK. Donât stop dreaming.
Some of yaâll were still in high school. If you went on to college, enjoy it while you got it. If you went straight to the real world, I wish you the best. I hope you found a trade you love, or a job that allows you to support yourself. Happiness is all that matters. If you ainât happy, adjust please.
Some of you were underclassmen in college, which means you probably just entered the workforce or youâre still trying to get that entry level position. These are the toughest times. You will struggle no doubt, but it will all work out in the end.
No matter where you were 5 years ago, I hope that today you are closer to your dreams. I know that everything hasnât gone exactly the way you planned, it hasnât for me either. But our job isnât to plan. Our job includes 3 responsibilities. 1. To dream. 2. To believe that dream is attainable. And 3. To work hard everyday towards that dream. Let God handle the rest.
As you go throughout this week replaying this project that changed my life and lots of yours too, I want to leave you with this because I feel we all need it. Read this as if these words were yours, because they are.
In 5 years I have come so far. I am grateful to be here today, alive and full of potential. But I am not satisfied. I still want more. I still have dreams, even bigger now than before. I will not settle or conform. I rededicate myself to greatness. I give my time and my passion to my craft, because I realize that the work I put in today affects the life that I live tomorrow. I believe in myself. And to all those that doubt me I say, âFuck that. I will be Greater. Watch me.â
What's you favorite track off The Warm Up?
[UPDATE: Tour dates announced]
The celebration continues. Cole has also announcedÂ dates forÂ his second annual âDollar & A Dream Tour.â The show kicks off July 3 in London andÂ travelsÂ to New York (7/15), Miami (7/17), Raleigh (7/19), Chicago (7/21), and L.A. (7/23).
He will performÂ The Warm UpÂ in its entirety during the six shows.Â TicketsÂ will cost $1 and be available on a first come, first serve basis. Yeah, you read that right: tickets will cost $1. Tickets available soon.