On Tuesday (June 16), the Fayetteville, N.C. native released a new track titled “Snow on tha Bluff.” The title of the track is seemingly inspired by the 2012 film Snow on tha Bluff, a story about Curtis Snow, an Atlanta drug dealer and robber who steals a camera from college students wanting drugs then begins to document his life.
On the introspective new record, J. Cole speaks on the current state of the world. The 35-year-old rapper touches on the pain felt by Black women, social media activism and the collective feelings of anger and uncertainty felt by the Black community across the United States.
He also speaks on a “young lady out there, she way smarter than me” after seeing her social media timeline. Cole doesn’t agree with how she shares her message with people. “Just ’cause you woke and I’m not, that shit ain’t no reason to talk like you better than me/How you gon’ lead, when you attackin’ the very same niggas that really do need the shit that you sayin’?/Instead of conveying you holier, come help get us up to speed/Shit, it’s a reason it took like two hundred years for our ancestors just to get freed,” Cole raps over the Wu10-produced track.
“These shackles be lockin’ the mental way more than physical/I look at freedom like trees, can’t grow a forest like overnight/Hit the ghetto and slowly start plantin’ your seeds/Fuck is the point of you preaching your message to those that already believe what you believe?/ I’m on some ‘Fuck a retweet,’ most people is sheep,” he continues.
While J. Cole doesn’t mention a person by name, fans believe he’s speaking about rapper Noname, who is very vocal on issues the Black community faces including racial injustice and oppression. In May she tweeted and deleted this comment: “poor black folks all over the country are putting their bodies on the line in protest for our collective safety and y’all favorite top selling rappers not even willing to put a tweet up. niggas whole discographies be about black plight and they no where to be found.”
This new track comes after an announcement was made by Dreamville Records president Ibrahim “Ib” Hamad stating the rapper was trying to bring “Be Free,” a song Cole made to mourn the loss of Michael Brown in 2014, to streaming services after fans began to beg for the track.