Down Bad

"Down Bad" is a song by American record label Dreamville, featuring J. Cole, JID, Bas, EarthGang, and Young Nudy. It was released on June 12, 2019 along with "Got Me" as the second single from Dreamville's 2019 compilation album, Revenge of the Dreamers III.[2]

"Down Bad"
Single by Dreamville featuring J. Cole, JID, Bas, EarthGang, and Young Nudy
from the album Revenge of the Dreamers III and the EP 1-888-88-DREAM
B-side"Got Me"
ReleasedJune 12, 2019
FormatDigital download
RecordedJanuary 6, 2019
StudioTree Sound Studios, Atlanta, Georgia[1]
GenreHip hop
Dreamville singles chronology
"Down Bad"
"Got Me"
J. Cole singles chronology
"The London"
"Down Bad"
JID singles chronology
"Off Deez"
"Down Bad"
"Costa Rica"
Bas singles chronology
"Fried Rice"
"Down Bad"
"Costa Rica"
EarthGang singles chronology
"Proud of U"
"Down Bad"
Music video
"Down Bad" on YouTube


The song was created on the first day of Dreamville's sessions for the compilation album.[3] Bas wrote on Instagram about his initial reaction to the song when he arrived in Atlanta:

"I had just landed from South Africa and went straight to the studio. Soon as I walked into the A-room, JID was starting this song, first verse and hook, and I was like '[save me a verse please]. That was literally the first verse I recorded when I got to Atlanta after a 17 hour flight, J. Cole was tucked off with T-Minus finishing "Middle Child" and popped his head in [the room] like 'yes, I need parts.' My brother Johnny Venus, who has my vote for camp MVP, well I don't want to give it away but he came in and managed to make the song his. A big assist from our host city's own Young Nudy."[4]

In February, Dreamville gave a live preview of the song after the All Star game – which J. Cole was the halftime show performer, during the free concert in Charlotte.[5] In May, JID also gave fans a snippet of the single during his set at Miami's Rolling Loud Festival.[6]

Under the EP 1-888-88-DREAM, the single was released with "Got Me" on June 12. The EP's title is referencing the "1-888-88-DREAM" phone number that Cole used to announce the original Revenge of the Dreamers in 2014.[7] Dreamville representatives used hotline phone number to talk to fans and also play some exclusive tracks from the label's compilation album.[8]


According to Genius, the song's "underlying beat is highly reminiscent" of "Rebel Without a Pause" by Public Enemy, although it is not a direct sample of the song.[6]

Music videoEdit

The official music video of the song was filmed in Atlanta, Georgia, and was uploaded on YouTube on October 22, 2019.[9]

Critical receptionEdit

Complex named "Down Bad" as one of the best songs of the week, calling it a "rowdy, kick-in-the-door anthem ready-made for summer mischief"[10] and said the artists pack a ridiculous amount of energy into less than three minutes, beginning with a "tragically short verse" from Young Nudy and closing things with a "rapid-fire verse" from EarthGang's Johnny Venus.[10]

Commercial performanceEdit

"Down Bad" originally peaked at number 75 on the US Billboard Hot 100. Following the release of its parent album, Revenge of the Dreamers III, the song reached a new peak of number 64.[11] On November 22, 2019, the song was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).[12]

Credits and personnelEdit

Credits and personnel adapted from Tidal.[13]

  • Jermaine Cole – featured artist, composer, lyricist
  • Destin Route – featured artist, composer, lyricist
  • Abbas Hamad – featured artist, composer, lyricist
  • Olu Fann – featured artist, composer, lyricist
  • Quantavious T. Thomas – featured artist, composer, lyricist
  • Pluss – producer, composer, lyricist
  • Joe LaPorta – mastering engineer
  • Juru "Mez" Davis – mixer
  • Miguel Scott – recording engineer


Chart (2019) Peak
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[14] 69
New Zealand Hot Singles (RMNZ)[15] 10
US Billboard Hot 100[11] 64
US Rolling Stone Top 100[16] 15


Region Certification Certified units/sales
United States (RIAA)[17] Gold 500,000 

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
 sales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Result Ref.
2020 Grammy Award Best Rap Performance Nominated [19]


  1. ^ Hundred, Juan (January 19, 2019). "The Creator's POV of the Dreamville 'ROTD3' Camp". istandardproducers. Retrieved January 20, 2019.
  2. ^ Marie, Erika (June 12, 2019). "Dreamville Delivers "Down Bad" Single Ft. J.I.D, Bas, J. Cole, EarthGang, & Young Nudy". HotNewHipHop. Retrieved June 13, 2019.
  3. ^ Martinez, Jose (January 6, 2019). "J. Cole Announces 'Revenge of The Dreamers III'". Complex.
  4. ^ "Bas" – via Instagram.
  5. ^ "J. COLE PREVIEWS 2 NEW SONGS AT NBA ALL-STAR DREAMVILLE SHOW: WATCH". HipHop-n-more. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
  6. ^ a b "Dreamville Pays Homage To Public Enemy With "Down Bad"". Genius. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  7. ^ "1-888-88-DREAM". Genius. Retrieved June 14, 2019.
  8. ^ "Dreamville Artists Drop 'Down Bad' & 'Got Me' Off Upcoming Compilation Project: Listen". Billboard. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  9. ^ "Watch Dreamville's "Down Bad" Video f/ J.I.D, Bas, J. Cole, EarthGang, and Young Nudy". Complex. Retrieved October 23, 2019.
  10. ^ a b Bernucca, Carolyn (June 14, 2019). "Best New Music This Week: Dreamville, Mac Miller, GoldLink, and More". Complex. Retrieved July 30, 2019.
  11. ^ a b "J Cole Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved July 16, 2019.
  12. ^ "Down Bad". RIAA. Retrieved December 19, 2019.
  13. ^ "1-888-88-DREAM" – via Tidal.
  14. ^ "J Cole Chart History (Canadian Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved July 16, 2019.
  15. ^ "NZ Hot Singles Chart". Recorded Music NZ. June 24, 2019. Retrieved June 21, 2019.
  16. ^ "Top 100 Songs". Rolling Stone. July 5, 2019. Retrieved January 8, 2020.
  17. ^ "American single certifications – Dreamville – Down Bad". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved December 18, 2019. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 
  18. ^ "Down Bad".
  19. ^ "Artist - J. Cole". Grammy. Retrieved 24 November 2019.