Ever since the release of his debut album, Cole World: The Sideline Story, nearly a decade ago, J. Cole has been smoking sh*t in rap music. However, thanks to his latest confession, that wasn’t the only thing the Dreamville boss was smoking on. During a recent interview with Bob Myers for ESPN’s show Lead By Example, the “Adonis Interlude” musician revealed that at one point earlier in his life, he regularly indulged in smoking cigarettes.
When asked by Myers what was the dumbest thing he’s ever done, the songwriter quickly confessed his past with tobacco. “At 6 years old, I was smoking cigarettes regularly around the neighborhood,” he replied.
Growing up in the rural south, Cole shared that it was far more common than one might believe. “I was always hanging around the older kids in the neighborhood that my older brother was hanging around, and they were smoking,” he shared before adding, “And I was young and fearless and trying to be cool.”
As he reflected on how he could be exposed to something so dangerous so early, he relied, “To them [the kids of the neighborhood], it’s funny. They were 10 years old themselves. So, it’s funny for them. Nobody’s really worried about me. They’re 10 and smoking cigarettes.”
According to the rapper, his nicotine habit was shorted-lived, as his brother and then soon his mother eventually found out. “This is going on for two-three weeks,” he said. Later Cole shared that the look of heartbreak and disappointment on his mother’s face was enough for him to kick the habit.
Watch the full interview above.