Born Sinner

Born Sinner

by J. ColeJ. Cole
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If his debut found J. Cole bringing the sound of Drake down to the streets, the Roc Nation rapper's sophomore effort finds him going for the full Illuminati and attempting an ambitious, multi-faceted album in the style of his label boss, Jay-Z. No spoiler alert required for that one as the opening "Villuminati" has the gall to sample Biggie's classic "Juicy" while using Jay's nickname as a mantra by repeating "Sometimes I brag like Hov," but besides this, Born Sinner is the a more self-confessional and word-filled effort than before, all of it very busy and Black Album minus the references to Beyoncé and the beats from Rick Rubin. Cole is the one who produced most of the album himself with his Kanye-sense of sampling (work songs, gospel, old soul, etc.) and his love of hard bass (check "Trouble," "Chaining Day," or infectious single "Power Trip" for some great low end) both returning from before, but it's his love of jazz that provides the greatest rewards as "Forbidden Fruit" (it's like Erykah Baduh meets Ice Cube on this soulful dude cut with guest Kendrick Lamar) and "Let Nas Down" (a pledge to honor the man with better rhymes and less pop) are both driven by their Blue Note-inspried backbeats. All this bold borrowing is backed up by lyrics that flow fine until their shocking twists ("She raisin' that guy's kids while she swallowin' mine"), while "She Knows" with Dirty Projectors vocalist Amber Coffman is shameless enough to spit "This is Martin Luther King in the Club/With a bad bitch in his ear/Saying that she down for whatever/In the back of his mind is Coretta." It's snide, smart-ass stuff and when it comes to sublime
idiculous balancing act that his heroes Jay-Z and Nas have mastered, Cole is a little short on the sublime side here to be considered classic. Still, "Crooked Smile" with special guests TLC is a genuine, mature step in the right direction and will have no trouble reaching vintage age. A handful of other numbers carry that same weight, making Born Sinner a daring step forward for Cole and an exciting attempt at mastering Jay's Blueprint style.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/18/2013
Label: Sony
UPC: 0888837302722
catalogNumber: 373027

Album Credits

Performance Credits

J. Cole   Primary Artist
Alvin Fields   Choir Director
Jerry Grossman   Cello
Suzanne Ornstein   Violin
Mary Wooten   Cello
Cedric Brown   Sampling
Maureen McDermott   Cello
Jung Sun Yoo   Violin
Kyle Armbrust   Viola
Nate Jones   Bass
Desiree Elsevier   Viola
Shmuel Katz   Viola
Amber Coffman   Background Vocals
DJ Dummy   scratching
Meleni Smith   Vocals
Yolanda DeBerry   Background Vocals
Erika Johnson   Choir, Chorus
Annaliesa Place   Violin
Carty   Bass
Jay Bratten   Bass
Canei Finch   Keyboards
Christine Kim   Cello
Joanna Maurer   Violin,Concert Master
Felix Ramos   Choir, Chorus
David Linaburg   Guitar
Ron Gilmore   Keyboards
Michael Harris   Choir, Chorus
Ann Lehmann   Violin
John Morgan   Choir, Chorus
Isaiah Raheem   Choir, Chorus
Rose Hart   Choir, Chorus
Roman Marshall   Choir, Chorus
William World   Choir, Chorus
Courtnee Rose   Percussion
Brett Sturgis   Choir, Chorus
Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt   Viola
Natalis Ruby Rubero   Choir, Chorus
Ari Feliciano   Choir, Chorus
Alyse Maree   Choir, Chorus
Gerald Smith   Choir, Chorus
Tiffany Rodriguez   Choir, Chorus
Tavon Nelson   Choir, Chorus
Tanika Myers   Background Vocals
Stephanie De Los Santos   Choir, Chorus
Serena Hernandez   Choir, Chorus
Sean Drew   Choir, Chorus
Ronnie Artis   Choir, Chorus
Jessica Antonetty   Choir, Chorus
Jessenia Peña   Choir, Chorus
Jamal Kris Ashby   Choir, Chorus
David Southhorn   Violin
K Nita   Choir, Chorus

Technical Credits

Ronnie Foster   Composer
Hubert Laws   Composer
R. Kelly   Composer
Sean "Puffy" Combs   Composer
James Mtume   Composer
Sandra Park   String Contractor
Pete Whitfield   Orchestration
Ken Lewis   Producer,Choir Arrangement,String Contractor,Choir Production
Elite   Composer,Producer
Mark Pitts   Executive Producer,Management
André Benjamin   Composer
Jean Claude "Poke" Olivier   Composer
Chris Feldmann   Art Direction
Brent Kolatalo   Engineer
Hanan Rubinstein   Engineer,Vocal Engineer
James Fauntleroy   Composer
Madeline McKenna   Composer
Meleni Smith   Composer
Wayne Barrow   Management
Marcos Tovar   Engineer
Mario Hugo   Art Direction,Illustrations
J. Cole   Composer,Producer,Engineer
Juro "Mez" Davis   Engineer
Jermaine Cole   Composer,Executive Producer
Jacob Dutton   Composer
Fred Sladkey   Engineer
Julius Garcia   Management
Ron Gilmore   String Arrangements
Carmen Roman   Choir Contractor
Ryan Mattos   Composer

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