Jermaine Lamarr Cole born to Kay Cole in 1985 known by his stage name, J. Cole, was born in Frankfurt, Germany. In Cole's childhood his father decided to leave the family to survive by themselves. After this Kay decided to move Cole and his brother Zach to Fayetteville, North Carolina. When they moved from Germany Cole's family went from living the suburbs to living in a trailer park. Cole began to express an interest in rap at the age of 12. When Cole moved to New York he looked towards his mentor Jay z. Jay z rejected him immediately crushing his dreams.
After Jay z rejected Cole he never gave up and still pursued towards his dream. In 2007 Cole released his debut mixtape, The Come Up, despite not having a record deal. After the release of this mixtape Cole went on to create his own record label, Dreamville, under Jay z's record company Roc Nation. In 2014 Cole released Forest Hills Drive which went on to sell over a million copies. This was Cole's best selling album to date. While working towards his dreams Cole left his mom and brother in search of a better life. Cole describes leaving his family as a major sacrifice for his dream.