News: J. Cole Prepared For Nicki Minaj Grammy Showdown, "Anything Is Possible"
Friday, Feb 3, 2012 8:43AM
Roc Nation rapper J. Cole has opened up on going for Grammy gold this month and how much pressure he feels facing off with artists like Nicki Minaj for "Best New Artist."
Although he is not fully confident in walking home with a trophy, Cole expressed the significance of even getting nominated.
"I'm going to be looking very nice in a good suit," says Cole (aka Jermaine Cole), 27, who'll be competing for the honor with The Band Perry, Bon Iver, Nicki Minaj and Skrillex. "I'm going to bring my family and friends and celebrate. I don't know how likely it is that I'll win, but I've learned that anything is possible." Cole, the first signee to Jay-Z's Roc Nation label, was surprised that he had garnered enough attention with his gold-selling debut, Cole World: The Sideline Story, to even earn a nomination in December. "I was kind of in disbelief," says the native of Fayetteville, N.C., whose hit "Work Out" has sold nearly 1.2 million downloads. "The day before, I was trying to prepare for disappointment because I honestly didn't think it would happen." (USA Today)
This week, Nicki Minaj said she did not expect to win any trophies at the annual ceremony.
"When I was at the Grammys last year, it was like I didn't even exist. And then to now be performing and nominated, it's a big deal," Minaj said in an interview. "I'm not going to be nervous about winning because I really don't think I'm going to win anything. The way I look at it is, I know eventually, in my career, I'm going to have Grammys. This year is just about being nominated and feeling grateful, feeling like my fans and I have come a very long way and we're just going to celebrate this moment. Nothing else matters - winning, not winning, it doesn't matter. It just matters that they get to see a girl from the hood take these steps and continue to take these steps, just with hard work." (Pandora Internet Radio)
In December, J. Cole's mentor Jay-Z said he deserved to snag "Best New Artist."
"I think it's great for him, because I'm sure it's a dream of his. We grew up seeing Michael Jackson, and I'm sure he grew up seeing whatever moment stuck in his mind, so I know it's great for him to do that," Hov told MTV News following a press conference announcing a pair of charitable shows at Carnegie Hall in New York. "I think he's already won Best New Artist, to me. His journey is what I'm really excited about." (MTV)
Cole later gave his reaction to Young Hov's remarks.
"It would be incredible to win. That's an understatement ... since I didn't even expect to get nominated. But I'm not walking in there with the attitude that I'm the guy [to beat]. But if I won, I'd know why. And if I didn't win, I'd understand." (Los Angeles Times)
The 54th Grammy Awards will be televised Sunday, February 12th from Los Angeles.
Check out some recent J. Cole footage below: