After two years of hype and speculation, it seems that J.Cole will come out on top with his debut album Cole World: the Sideline Story. Early reports from Billboard suggest that the LP could push 240,000 to 250,000 copies this first week. Not only does this come as a blow to all of Cole’s naysayers, but also to Blink 182, who will have to settle for the runner-up spot with a predicted 140,000 for their “comeback” album.
I have to say that I am surprised with Cole’s numbers, mainly because he does not have the radio support that other artists do. The last solo act to debut at number 1 with their first album was B.o.B. He only sold 84,000 copies, which is odd considering he had a number 1 song on the radio. 84,000 copies is pretty sad when you consider all of the mainstream attention he was getting. Meanwhile, Cole seems to be on the sideline (pun intended), yet still will debut at number.
There a few reason why I think this happened, but mainly it’s his association with Jay-Z. There have been artist before who have been co-signed by Jay-Z, but not like this. Jay made it clear that Cole was his project, a protege, and when you have the hip-hop royalty singing you praises all day people are going to notice, especially the blogs. I’d argue that one of the main reasons Cole is selling is due to blogs.
Every blog I read was telling me how good he was even before I heard a song. With the blog already implanting ideas into their readers, Cole seemed destined to succeed. “Work Out” was a great first single, and I wish that it would’ve received more airplay, but it seems that sales aren’t reflecting the singles success. Whether or not the album will have longevity, its clear that Cole has made an initial impression, something that most artist fail to do.
What do you think?