J. Cole – High For Hours (Lyrics Review and Song Meaning)

j cole high for hours lyrics review song meaning

Martin Luther King Jr. Day passed on and J. Cole decided to speak out his mind and when he does that a lot of people get hurt. “High For Hours” is J. Cole’s latest track about the oppression that takes place on a daily basis in White America. He also talks about the time he met Barack Obama and discussing the same issues he is rapping about in this track.

“High For Hours” is produced by Cam O’bi and Elite.

Listen to “High For Hours” by J. Cole

The lyrics are quite straightforward and sharp on this track and the flow is smooth. However it’s interesting to see what J. Cole has to get out in these lyrics.

Lyrics Review and Song Meaning of “High For Hours”

Intro of the track sets the pace…

This is called being high as shit, for hours
That’s the name of this song, nigga
“High as Shit for Hours”
Here we go, yeah

Metaphorically, the singer is getting to a state of lucid dreaming for him to get these lines out. Getting high as sh*t helps him hit everyone and everything else would have been a second guess.

Verse 1

American hypocrisy, oh, let me count the ways
They came here seekin’ freedom
Then they end up ownin’ slaves
Justified it usin’ Christianity which saves

America is shrouded in hypocrisy that nobody even knows what’s right and wrong anymore-the singer can’t even count the ways of which people are hypocritical of.

The white men came seeking freedom to America and enslaved the natives and then the Blacks. Most of these cruel acts were done in the name of religion.

Later in the same first verse, J. Cole outs his opinion on terrorism on “High For Hours.”

Remember when Bin Laden got killed, supposedly?
In a hotel lobby after a show, was noticin’
These white ladies watchin’ CNN, coverin’ the action
They read the headline and then they all started clappin’
As if LeBron had just scored a basket at the buzzer
I stood there for a second, watched them high-five each other
For real? I thought this was “Thou shalt not kill”

The Al-Qaeda leader Bin Laden was ‘allegedly’ killed by the US Navy in his home soil and people clapped and cheered over hearing the news of his death on media. Should people really celebrate the death of a person when the religion teaches “Thou shall not kill”-the same religion we obeyed so well to enslave people. Bin Laden was a ‘terrorist’ because he was pushed into those circumstances-mostly by the US itself.

J. Cole also addresses the countless police brutalities and even murders of African Americans in the past few years.

But police still lettin’ off on niggas in the Ville
Claimin’ that he reached for a gun
They really think we dumb and got a death wish
Now somebody’s son is layin’ breathless

J. Cole Speaks about his conversation with President Barack Obama in “High For Hours”

I had a convo with the President, I paid to go and see him
Thinkin’ about the things I said I’d say when I would see him
Feelin’ nervous, sittin’ in a room full of white folks
Thinkin’ about the black man plight, think I might choke
Nope, raised my hand and asked a man a question
Does he see the struggle of his brothers in oppression?
And if so, if you got all the power in the clout
As the President, what’s keepin’ you from helpin’ niggas out?
Well, I didn’t say “nigga,” but you catch my drift
He looked me in my eyes and spoke and he was rather swift
He broke the issues down and showed me he was well-aware
I got the vibe he was sincere and that the brother cared
But dawg, you in the chair, what’s the hold up?
He said, “There’s things that I wanna fix
But you know this shit, nigga: politics.”

The authenticity of the occurrences in the above lines I cannot vouch for, but J. Cole says the highest of the powers in the country are too unable to lift a finger over these issues he is worries about.

J. Cole met Barack Obama-he had to pay for the meetup, he was surrounded by whites (probably the ticket was very expensive) and he raised the thorny questions that would prick the same people inside that room.

According to J. Cole, even the President of the United States is aware of the ‘situation’ going on in the country. So J. Cole asks the next tough question-if he knows what’s going on why isn’t he directly getting involved? Well, then comes the bitter answer “politics.” It’s a tough balance keeping all the people in a country happy for 8 years. But that isn’t a valid excuse. If Abraham Lincoln turned a blind eye to slavery back in his time, it would be a lot worse now.

In verse 3 of “High For Hours” J. Cole speaks about a much needed change…

Take a deeper look at history, it’s there to pick apart
See, the people at the top, they get to do just what they want
‘Til after a while the people at the bottom finally get smart
Then they start to holla “Revolution!”

People in big and powerful seats enjoy their luxuries in an ‘ignorance is bliss’ state until the small people unite and scream for their needs. That’s when the powerful people wake up and actually do something.

So when you talk ’bout revolution
Dawg, I hear just what you sayin’
What good is takin’ over
When we know what you gon’ do?
The only real revolution happens right inside of you

This is some important and real wisdom here. J. Cole calls for a revolution, but what does a revolution do? Change the oppressor and put someone else on the seat? But if power corrupts the same thing happens to the new guy. It’s a cycle and it needs to be changed. The revolution should not be on the streets, but only within yourself. Kill the greed and then true peace can be achieved.

“High For Hours” ends after the third verse leaving us with a lot of thinking to do. Greed and materialism and consumerism has consumed us all and we are too hypocritical to even notice anything different. This is one of the realest lyrics by J. Cole and a good start off for year 2017.

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