Rap newcomer J. Cole recently discussed his recent signing to Jay-Z's Roc Nation label and admitted he feels pressure to generate his own success.
For Cole, the rapper said he appreciated the challenge to live up to the hype.
"'Cause Jay-Z's shadow is so big, it would be hard for anybody to come out of that," Cole said about feeling pressured to deliver success. "But I'm the type of person where, A., I look at things as challenges, I like challenges and, B., I truly believe that you determine your own destiny. An opportunity is an opportunity, and one of that magnitude would be dumb to pass up, especially when I truly believe that I make my path and I set my course, and where I land, at the end of the day, or the end of my career, [is] because of me. Of course, you get help along the way, and cosigns and management and opportunities and things like that but overall, the ball is in your court basically. In terms of pressure, I used to say I didn't feel any pressure 'cause I really wasn't thinkin' about it, but now that I'm thinkin' about it, it's like a good pressure. I feel the type of pressure that a strong-minded first pick in a draft would feel. 'Cause I feel like a first pick in a draft could either be like, 'D*mn, I'm the first pick! I don't wanna mess up! I don't wanna f*ck this up, they invested a lot of money in me!' or he could be like, 'Yeah, I'm the first round pick, 'cause I worked so hard to be the first round pick. Now I'm gonna show you why I'm the first pick.'" (DJ Booth)