J Cole J Cole
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 27: J. Cole performs during VH1's "Super Bowl Blitz: Six Nights + Six Concerts" at Kupferberg Center for the Arts, Queens College on January 27, 2014 in the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)

12 Reasons J. Cole is the Perfect Valentine [Plus 'She Knows' Video Premiere]

Typically, the prototype of a man-especially on Valentine's Day- is an adonis. Tall, handsome, and in impossibly good shape, what society considers the perfect specimen usually resembles something only the best screenwriter can invent. Furthermore, they're emotionally available, swimming in disposable income and an indescribable lover. In short, he's everything you probably haven't had; in fact: this fantasy is the opposite of most men you've encountered on your journey to adulthood.

In the ever evolving world of hip hop, the rapper remains the unattainable for "normal" girls everywhere. They're famous, flossed out, swimming in cash and usually surrounded by women: they have to be perfect, right?

WRONG!

Today, emcees are trading in fairytales for cautionary ones with news of cheating, divorce and children born out of wedlock. The line between fantasy and reality has been drawn and most stand behind the latter. And we like it that way, especially when reflected in music like J. Cole's.

The Dreamville rep's penchant for reality raps have transformed him into a new kind of hearthrob; the kind whose imperfections bring him strangely closer to perfection. Sure, there are gold plaques on his wall, but our favorite Carolina boy knows the ins and outs of struggle, from dodging Sallie Mae calls to making rent and of course: all interaction with the opposite sex.

Last year, Cole kicked off V-Day with "Power Trip," a story of obsession, and one year later, the "born sinner" comes full circle with "She Knows," a song about the battle between a relationship and temptation. The visuals, starring Best Man Holiday's Harold Perrineau and  the stunning Rochelle Aytes (Crazy, Sexy, Cool: The TLC Story), put a surprising spin on the Amber Coffman-assisted track and continue to showcase Cole's love for storytelling.

Get into the just-released visuals above and keep reading for 12 reasons J. Cole is the perfect Valentine.

-Nicole Brown & Sharifa Daniels

Related Article: Songs That Will Make You a J. Cole Fan [Video]

J. Cole engaged to longtime girlfriend

Ambition

"I got a dollar and dream that's all a n*gga got and if you bout that dream then I'm all up in your spot."
-
Dollar and a Dream III
"I went to St. Johns, I coulda went to Julliard. Cause my beautiful mind mixed with my musical bond"
-Omen
N*gga moved to NYC, b*tch. Got a record deal and a college degree, b*tch"
-TKO Remix

Women want nothing more than a hard working man to call their own and J Cole screams ambition through a multitude of lyrics. Whether it be his college education or determination to make it in the rap game; J Cole's words are a major turn on to women.

J-Cole at The Roots Philly event

Not a Fan of Uneducated Women

"But you see the sad thing f*ckin' with her is
Is the chick ain't even have brains, dummy like a b*tch

So I tried to show her about the world and about just who we really are
And where we've come and how we still have to go really far
Like "baby, look at how we live broke on the boulevard"
But all she ever want me to do is unhook her bra"

-Lights Please

"Lights Please" is an ode to women that aren't intellectual and think the only thing riding for them is their sex. Even though he's taken, we appreciate Cole's ability to encourage the ladies to take a long, hard look at themselves.

J Cole

Loves Imperfections 

"To all the women with the flaws, know it's hard my darling. You wonder why you're lonely and your man's not calling
You keep falling victim cause you're insecure. And when I tell you that you're beautiful you can't be sure
Cause he don't seem to want you back and it's got you asking. So all you see is what you lacking, not what you packing
Take it from a man that loves what you got. And baby girl you're a star, don't let 'em tell you you're not"
-Crooked Smile

He wrote an entire song about embracing your imperfections in addition to his own.  A man openly saying he loves you just the way you are is an automatic heartthrob in our book.

J Cole

Deals With Sallie Mae

"Ay Sallie, I know I ain't been answering your calls
But sh*t, let me explain- it's because times been hard
Been running around trying find a job
I hear my phone ringing in the morning, 9 o’clock
And it's you, can't even front I press ignore"
-Dollar and a Dream II

Like many of us, he's still dealing with Sallie Mae. It's nice to know a rapper isn't just flossing, but has real bills to pay.  Dealing with this loan company is easier when set to good music.

J Cole


He Wants to Help His Guys Out

"And so I write this for my n*ggas on the corner
Love you cause you my brother so I feel I got to warn ya
This sh*t ain't set up for a young brother to advance
On that note, you n*ggas playing right into their hands
Damn, better get yourself some goals, you n*ggas better dream
I know the hood raised you but it's bigger better things"
-Losing My Balance

Most of us either know, date(d), or lost a man to the corner. Cole's passionate raps about reaching the hustlers and helping them change their ways for the better is always appealing.

J Cole

His Finances Aren't Expendable

"This sample was yellin' "loop me!", Ms. Hill please don't sue me
Cause I ain't one of these rappers out here frontin' like he got it, n*gga
I ain't f*ckin' got it, n*gga...

Throwing thousands in the strip club with Drizzy
Difference is I'm throwing four, he's throwing fifty

Lord, forgive me"
-Cole Summer

We love a man who endorses budgeting. The entertainment industry is a world where men love to flaunt what they have,  but we'll always take a guy that understands his finances.

J Cole

He's Apologetic

"If i had one wish, I would f*ck Tia and Tamera, at the same time
And put name tags on they titties so I don’t get they name wrong"
-Cole Summer
"I’m artistic, you n*ggas is autistic, retarded"
-Jodeci Freestyle

He understands that as an artist, you have to be held accountable for your actions. Instead of being insensitive to how others may perceive his work, he takes blame when necessary. After rapping about autism in "Jodeci Freestyle" and having sex with Tia and Tamera Mowry in "Cole Summer," the Roc Nation signee swiftly made amends with those he offended.

J. Cole

He Loves the Real

"Your hair and your nails just as phony as your smile
Fake eyelashes, you drew your eyebrows
It make a brother ask, do you pride yourself?
Your make up like a mask, tryna hide yourself
It seems on the outside, you thinking you the sh*t
But there's a soul that's inside that you don't even knew exist"
-Losing My Balance

Finally, a rapper who raps about wanting a girl without a "beat" face and calls out those that fake the funk to snag a man.  A man that loves a woman's natural beauty and wants her to have a beautiful soul is the Valentine we'd love.

J Cole

He Speaks on Realities of Abortion

A life grows inside, and now he asking "Is it even mine?"
What if this b*tch ain't even pregnant, dog, could she be lying?
And she be crying cause he acting distant

Like "Ever since I told you this, n*gga you acting different"
-Lost Ones

Pregnancy is scary and a lot of us have had to deal with it either first hand or through the eyes of others. "Lost Ones" keeps it painfully honest about a situation between a man and woman who aren't married.

J Cole

Honest Man

“Even back then when I was up there in Mohammed crib
Paying 1700 for the rent, money well spent
No heater, but a n—- made heat, may I vent”
-Power Trip
“The 15th of the month and I’m just now paying Mohammed 
Said the rent’s due on the first 
But he don’t know the s— I been through and it hurts”
-‘Shook Ones’ Freestyle

Many may not know this, but Mohammed was Cole's real NYC landlord and continued to believe in his dreams even when J's pockets were empty.

J Cole

Mama's Boy

"Ducking calls from my mother for days
Sometimes she hate the way she raised me but she love what she raised
Can't wait to hand her these house keys with nothing to say"
-Born Sinner
"They got me thinking bout my mom though
Man I can't wait to sing this song I be like, I be like
...We ain't gotta worry bout the money no more
We ain't gotta worry bout how them bill get paid
We ain't gotta worry how the meals get fed"
-2Face
"But I finally put my Momma in that E class, n*gga
And I told her quit her job, but hold your horses
If my next album flops it's back to the post office, both of us, sh*t
They're saying that's a real possibility
The thought alone is killing me"
-Cole Summer

There are a select few mama's boy verses we can tolerate and J Cole is one of them.  A man that wants to provide for the woman who sacrificed for him is a keeper.

J Cole

He Encourages Self Love

"Love yourself, girl, or nobody will.
Oh, you a woman? I don't know how you deal.
With all the pressure to look impressive and go out in heels. I feel for you.

Killing yourself to find a man that'll kill for you.
You wake up, put makeup on.

Stare in the mirror but its clear that you can’t face what’s wrong.
No need to fix what God already put his paint brush on.
Your roommate yelling, 'Why you gotta take so long?'"

-Crooked Smile

While he can't always relate to our problems, he always reminds women that he feels for them. Some men refer to us as b*tches or hoes, but J. Cole just wants us to love ourselves.

J. Cole and girlfriend

Trying to Treat His Girl Right

"All this time I’ve been with ya you ain't used to do that
I loved your ass way before I knew you could rap
The way you breaking my heart I should sue you for that
Call up my uncles and my cousins have them do you for that

We had a deal and you ain't keeping up your end of the sh*t
In my mind I know she get the short end of the stick"
-Love Me Not

We aren't sure if he wrote this song directly to his girl, but "Love Me Not" speaks volumes. He knows he's not treating his girl right and she's sticking with him through it all.

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The North Face

Ella Mai On The North Face's 'Explore Mode' Campaign, New Music And Living In The Moment

Ella Mai is in her own age of exploration. Her eponymous debut album scored her a platinum plaque with her breakout hit, "Boo'd Up" earning her a Grammy for Best R&B Song. But the accolades aren't driving her creative path. The arc in her compass is all about the places she's traveled, the people she's met and the lessons learned along the way.

"To be honest, personally, exploration is like growth. I feel like if you don't explore new things, whether it's going outside, meeting people or trying new food, you won't ever grow because you're just stuck in your little comfort zone which can be super scary to come out of," she tells VIBE at The North Face's Explore Mode event in New York on Monday (April 15). The singer is one of three women (including model-activist Gabrielle Richardson and chef Angela Dimayuga) who teamed up with the brand to share a message of enjoying the outside world without digital confinement and the global initiative to make Earth Day a national holiday.

The London native's urge to explore came in handy over the weekend when she performed in the brisk desert of Coachella. Inspired by artists like Rihanna and Ms. Lauryn Hill, Mai helped fans enjoy the hazy sunset as she performed hits like "Trip" and her latest No. 1 song, "Shot Clock."

"It's such a good feeling, especially when it comes to radio," she shared about her track reaching No. 1 on the airplay chart. "I wasn't even sure if people listened to the radio because people have so much access to streaming platforms, but obviously having all three of my singles from my debut album, go number one on urban radio is incredible."

That energy was brought to the Coachella stage with the festival being her biggest artistic exploration so far.

"My favorite part of the performance would have to be when I performed "Naked" and because it was dark, and I performed when the sun went down, I couldn't see how far the crowd actually went back. But during "Naked," it was such an intimate moment I asked everyone to put their lights up (phones) and when I saw how far it went back I was like, "Woah." That moment sealed it for me."

"Even there were two people in the audience, I still would've done my best," she added. "But just to see the crowd be so engaged, even if they didn't know the music, was a really good feeling. I had so much fun."

As the festival energy in Indio, Calif. continued to thrive, another rested on the streets of Los Angeles following the loss of Nipsey Hussle. With the singer having ties to those close to the rapper like DJ Mustard, she says the shift in the city was hard to ignore.

"As weird as it sounds, you felt it," she said. "Even in the weather, it was super hot and then everyone got the news and it started raining. Just a weird energy shift." As a new L.A. resident, the singer says Nipsey's influence cannot be denied.

"I feel like the energy shift went both ways; everyone was really sad, grieving and mourning but everyone feels more inspired by what he was doing that they want to go out and do something and change in their community. It's still a very touchy subject in L.A., especially the people that I'm around since they were very close to him. I think everyone is super inspired to do better and try to be more like him, which is great to see. YG's whole set at Coachella was dedicated to him, I know Khalid had a dedication to Mac Miller. Everyone is super aware of what Nipsey was trying to do and how he wanted to change the world."

Engaging in The North Face's mission to explore seemed to be in the cards for Mai. Like many of us, Mai was familiar with the brand's effective coolness factor. "I remember running home and telling my mom that I needed a Jester Backpack because my cousin had one as well, and it's similar to the other stories, I wanted to be like my older cousin (laughs) so my mom ended up getting me one." But there's also the incentive to showcase the importance of stepping away from the phone screens and into leafy green forests.

"I'm such a live-in-the-moment person," she says of her lack of identity on social media. While she might share a thought or two on social media, Mai is interested in appreciating the world around her. "I feel like everyone is so consumed about documenting the day, you don't really get to live the day. You just watch it back but I like to have the memories in my head. Of course, sometimes, I'll take out my phone but I try to live in the moment as much as possible."

Part of that mission is ensuring Earth Day is celebrated the right way. With the support of Mai, Richardson, and Dimayuga, The North Face officially launched a petition to make Earth Day a national holiday.

“The North Face is no stranger to exploration and this Earth Day we are proud to join our partners and fellow explorers in a global effort to make Earth Day a national holiday,” said Global General Manager of Lifestyle at The North Face, Tim Bantle. “We believe that when people take time to appreciate the Earth, they feel more connected to it and are more likely to protect it. Explore Mode urges us to unplug from our digital lives to connect in real life to the world, each other, and ourselves in the effort to move the world forward.”

Mai hasn't hit her all of her exploration goals just yet. "I really want to go to Indonesia or Bali," she said. "That's one of my Bucket List places I really, really, really wanna go." For her essentials, the singer knows she has to bring along a windbreaker set and of course, a jester backpack. "I think the backpack is the most important thing."

In addition to a few trips around the globe, one destination includes the studio for new music. While she hasn't had time to lock down a moment to record, the inspiration is sizzling.

"When I work in the studio, I like to be like there for a good amount of time," she explains. "I like to block off two to three weeks at a time, I don't like to go to different studios and different places, it's just a comfort thing but I'm very excited to get back cause I have a lot of talk about. I've seen so many different places and met so many new people and a lot that I didn't get to experience last year."

Learn more about The North Face's petition for Earth Day here.

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Mike Windle/Getty Images for McWraps

Tatyana Ali Shares She’s Pregnant With Second Child

A new bundle of joy is on the way for actress Tatyana Ali and her husband Dr. Vaughn Rasberry. On Saturday (April 13), The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air co-star shared the news on Instagram, posting a picture of her baby bump and an excited caption.

“I was on a work trip recently and I thought it was about time I captured my baby bump,” she wrote. “We’re so excited! They say every pregnancy is different and they ain’t lying. Phew! I’m exhausted this go round, swirling with emotion and starving, like constantly. Feeling very blessed.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

I was on a work trip recently and I thought it was about time I captured my baby bump. We’re so excited! They say every pregnancy is different and they ain’t lying. Phew! I’m exhausted this go round, swirling with emotion and starving, like constantly. Feeling very blessed. #BabyRasberry

A post shared by Tatyana Ali (@tatyanaali) on Apr 13, 2019 at 7:52am PDT

 

View this post on Instagram

 

“Who are you calling?” I asked. He said, “the baby in Mama’s tummy”- Already in cahoots.

A post shared by Tatyana Ali (@tatyanaali) on Apr 14, 2019 at 6:47am PDT

In 2017, Ali and Rasberry had their first child, Edward, who arrived a year after the pair wed in July 2016. In an interview with Parents, Ali described her method to parenting, which she picked up from her mother and father.

“I’m more laid-back than I thought I’d be,” Ali said. “My dad was like this with me and my two sisters. While my mom was stricter, he said, ‘If you teach them everything they need to know, they’ll be prepared and figure things out.’”

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Actor Michael B. Jordan backstage at the 88th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on February 28, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)
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Michael B. Jordan Would Like To Be Considered For B2K's Millennium Tour

Michael B. Jordan loves nostalgia. From the 90s and beyond, the actor has always shown love to those who helped create our favorite music memories. Now, Jordan is looking to throw his hat in the running for B2K's Millenium Tour.

The actor shared a hilarious video of himself, Terrance J and Ridiculousness' Steelo Brim jamming to Diddy's "I Need A Girl Remix" this week on Twitter with the caption, "Is there any more room on the Millennium Tour?" Fans of the 2000s hip-hip/R&B era are aware the jam was released in 2002 from Diddy's LP, We Invented The Remix.

https://twitter.com/michaelb4jordan/status/1116092812787953665

We're sure B2K, Mario, Pretty Ricky, Lloyd and the rest of the family wouldn't mind having Killmonger on the road with them. Meanwhile, the guys have brought out several special guests on the Millennium Tour. So far, surprise performances have included Ashanti, Ja Rule, Bow Wow and B5.

Enjoy "I Need A Girl Part 2" below.

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