Burna released his latest album I Told Them… last month and collaborated with Cole on the song “Thanks.”
Appearing on the Rap Radar Podcast, the Nigerian star opened up about his studio session with J. Cole, where the Dreamville rapper called him “2Pac reincarnated.”
“I don’t really know the dynamics behind how everything happened, but somehow I end up in the studio with J. Cole and a bunch of basketball players — tall as hell,” he said. “And then yeah, before any music, we were just all talking about real stuff, about life and everything really.
“And for me, I don’t really talk. I don’t really have conversations with people that don’t live with me and stuff like that. I don’t have them long conversations like that. So for me, I found myself going off.
“Before we start, he just goes, ‘Bruh, this n-gga’s 2Pac.’ And then I look around to see who he’s talking about, and it’s me he’s talking about. Like, ‘Yeah, this n-gga is — it’s like 2Pac reincarnated in Africa and shit.’ [I was like], ‘Damn, that’s kinda deep. Alright, let’s make some music.'”
“Thanks” is the first time that Burna Boy and J. Cole have collaborated. On the track, Cole boldly compares himself and Burna to Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal.
“Cole and Burna, Shaq and Kobe/ Winnin’ a ring, then we gon’ repeat and three-peat/ Them nerds hate, they seat geeks/ They peepin’ us on the low, we like the cheat sheet,” he raps in his verse.
Burna Boy was also full of praise for J. Cole during a recent interview with Apple Music, calling him a “legend.”
“Legend, man,” he told Zane Lowe. “The truth is often hidden, but when you come across it and you are a person of truth yourself, you can’t help but recognize it. You know what I mean? That’s really the story of me and J Cole. It’s like, I recognize it.
“That’s something I’ve always looked at, his settings, and thought, ‘Rah, that would be a nice, very conducive way to end up.’”
J. Cole and Burna Boy have another collaboration in the locker. On Complex‘s 360 with Speedy, Burna revealed they recorded something completely different to “Thanks” during their studio session.
“We did get in the studio but we didn’t make ‘Thanks’ that day,” he said. “We made something else. And yeah, he sent the verse for ‘Thanks’ a few weeks later.”
When asked about what they made in the studio, he replied: “Ask [J. Cole].”