J. Cole connects to the community during his ‘KOD’ tour

Isabelle Rayburn

There are hundreds of artists worth seeing in concert and J. Cole is just one of the many. Luckily the tour of his latest release, “KOD” hit Denver on Sept. 10 at the Pepsi Center. 

Cole had a surprise album called “KOD” that dropped on 4/20 this year. Soon after the “KOD” tour was announced and having written the review to praise the album, I wanted to experience the emotions in real life that I experienced when I first heard the album. 


The “KOD” tour opened with KiLL Edward, who is J. Cole’s alter ego and performed a song he released as KiLL Edward on SoundCloud. What was really surprising was that the crowd seemed to not know that KiLL Edward was, in fact, J. Cole and diehard fans knew who was really on stage.

J. Cole preforms at the Pepsi Center on Sept. 10, 2018. Cole is currently on tour for his album ‘KOD’ which dropped in April this year. (Isabelle Rayburn | Collegian).

Earthgang, a hip-hop duo from Atlanta, Ga. came out after KiLL Edward. Young Thug was supposed to open also but unfortunately could not make it. The last opener was Jaden Smith, an actor turned music artist and son of Will Smith. His most famous song right now is “Icon,” and he performed it twice and came to my section during the song.

We knew J. Cole was next when backdrop on stage with the words “Kids On Drugs, King Overdosed, Kill Our Demons” appeared. When the backdrop feel the “KOD” clouds were revealed. J. Cole opened with visuals of women and children with the song “Intro” playing behind it. That lead into the song “Window Pain (Outro).”

Throughout the concert, J. Cole spoke to us about community and temptation. He explained how his album is a warning and that overdosing is happening to too many people such as the recent tragic death of fellow rapper, Mac Miller.

Cole kept telling the audience that in our communities today, we need to choose wisely because there are many ways to deal with pain. The temptation is real and we need to watch out for what is good and bad for us.

Cole’s set was really diverse when it came to new and old music. He brought us back to “2014 Forest Hills Drive” and even did songs from way before he gained fame. I could tell that he is very humble about where he’s from and he kept telling the audience that things like this don’t happen overnight and that working hard is key.  

The show closed out with “1985 (Intro To “The Fall Off”)” followed by him saying that Denver was the best show yet. I could tell that J. Cole is very invested in his performance and is really passionate about his words and that is what I love most about him as a person and performer. 

With that being said, I am going to go get a “Choose Wisely” tattoo.

Isabelle Rayburn can be reached at entertainment@collegian.com or on Twitter @Seiss_Diosaa.