With unforgettable quick-witted flows, jaw-dropping wordplay and a little help from the legendary J. Cole, The Never Story has been a staple of JID’s short yet powerful discography. He would soon follow up his debut effort with DiCaprio 2 — praised by critics for pushing the boundaries further than his first outing.
However, solo projects from the 31-year-old emcee have since been scarce. While he has contributed to albums with both Dreamville (2019) and Spillage Village (2020) — also lending his voice to the mega-hit “Enemy“ with Imagine Dragons — the clever lyricist has kept his lips tight on his next project. With a robust run of singles in 2021 and touting features on some of the biggest records in recent years, fans have been desperately waiting on a body of work from the Dreamville wordsmith. Teasing his third studio album, The Forever Story, over the past two years, JID’s long-awaited return is much closer than you think.
The story that’s taken “forever” to formulate starts in August 2019, when JID released a series of tweets teasing music coming that October. He also gave his supporters an update on his mental health and revealed it was the reason he wanted to drop new music.
During September of that same year, when asked by a fan, he expressed interest in doing a collaborative project with fellow Dreamville artist Ari Lennox. As of now, nothing has come of it.
While fans patiently waited for any rumblings of a new solo album, he released a collaboration tape with Spillage Village titled Spilligion in 2020. Keeping momentum with tracks in “Baguetti” with Smino and Kenny Beats and “Cereal” with IDK and Kenny Mason, we wouldn’t hear word of a new LP until January 2021, where he seemingly revealed the name for his upcoming project: The Forever Story.
Almost an exact month later, the wordsmith would drop “Skegee” — which highlighted his empowering sentiments during Black History Month. He would continue to tease The Forever Story throughout 2021 in various posts. Along with this, he would release singles and freestyles via his SoundCloud (which later made it to streaming in 2021) which boasts features from Denzel Curry (“Bruuuh [Remix]”) and Conway the Machine (“Ballads”) respectively.
Aside from social media confirmations, things surrounding the project went pretty quiet. While fans continued to wait for any news, JID would share a picture of himself with Drake in April 2021. This built massive hype for the project, wondering if we could possibly see the 6 God contribute to The Forever Story in some capacity.
Despite collaborating with artists such as Dua Lipa, Doja Cat, IDK and more, we still had no news of the forthcoming project until January 2022, — releasing “Surround Sound” with features from 21 Savage and Baby Tate.
The track gave fans everything they wanted from JID: Great lyricism, an amazing beat switch, a classic jazz sample and what JID proclaims is the best 21 Savage feature of the year. He would later confirm via Twitter that “Surround Sound” will be the lead single off The Forever Story.
In March, he reconfirmed that the project was still being worked on and promised fans that once he drops the project, they will never have to wait this long for new JID music again.
Before JID started on his festival run in April 2022 — which included sets at Dreamville Festival and Coachella — fans noted that he was seen working with legendary rapper/producer Dr. Dre on The Forever Story, which JID seemed to confirm by retweeting the notice.
JID would later perform his first set at Coachella, bringing out artists EARTHGANG and Kenny Mason, saying that he would announce the release date for The Forever Story in week 2 of the festival. Unfortunately, this never proved to be true.
However, June has treated JID fans with plenty of hope as it looks like a rollout to The Forever Story could happen at any second.
The album was reportedly played in New York, accompanied by an electrifying performance at NYC’s Governor’s Ball festival. Along with this, JID released a freestyle titled “29” to YouTube with an accompanying video — also announcing that TFS would be introducing a slew of “new sounds and flows.”
While we wait, we can be comforted by the fact that JID firmly believes that The Forever Story is his best body of work yet. In an interview with Billboard earlier this year, he revealed that his upcoming LP was the “best shit I’ve ever done in my life.”
“This next album [The Forever Story] is the best shit I’ve ever done in my life. Every step I’ve taken was worth it, and our blocks are building.”JID to Billboard
Even though there are no signs of a track list, cover art or a solidified release date, it’s apparent that a lot of work has went into The Forever Story and can possibly be JID’s biggest statement yet. Gaining more fans and hype by the day, JID seems prepared to take the next step into stardom and will drop a worthy sequel three years in the making.
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