James Todd Smith, better known by his stage name LL Cool J (short for Ladies Love Cool James), was born on January 14, 1968. He is an American rapper, composer, record producer, and actor. Along with other new school hip hop artists Beastie Boys and Run-DMC, he was one of the first rappers to have mainstream success.
LL Cool J, who had been signed to Def Jam Recordings since 1984, achieved success with the single “I Need a Beat” and his seminal debut album, Radio (1985). With the albums Bigger and Deffer (1987), Walking with a Panther (1989), Mama Said Knock You Out (1990), Mr. Smith (1995), and Phenomenon (1997), he experienced additional financial and critical success. Exit 13 (2008), his thirteenth album, marked the end of his lengthy contract with Def Jam.
Halloween H20, In Too Deep, Any Given Sunday, Deep Blue Sea, S.W.A.T., Mindhunters, Last Holiday, and Edison are just a few of the movies that LL Cool J has appeared in. In the CBS drama series NCIS: Los Angeles, he portrayed NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna. Additionally, LL Cool J hosted Lip Sync Battle on the Paramount Network.
LL Cool J, a two-time Grammy Award winner, is best known for his R&B successes like “Doin’ It,” “I Need Love,” “Around the Way Girl,” and “Hey Lover,” as well as hip hop songs like “Going Back to Cali,” “I’m Bad,” “The Boomin’ System,” “Rock the Bells,” and “Mama Said Knock You Out.” He was listed among the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time” by VH1 in 2010. The first rapper to win the Kennedy Center Honors was LL Cool J in 2017. His Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction took place in 2021, and he received a prize for musical excellence.
LL Cool J Early life and family
Ondrea Griffith, who was born on January 19, 1946, and James Louis Smith Jr., also known as James Nunya, had James Todd Smith on January 14, 1968 in Bay Shore, New York. The Chicago Tribune reports that Smith’s childhood in Queens, where he was raised middle class and Catholic, was heartbreaking. His father wounded his grandfather and mother with a gun, almost killing them both. They were covered in blood when 4-year-old Smith discovered them. Smith was raised at his grandparents’ house in St. Albans, Queens, which they moved into in 1972. His mother’s ex-boyfriend Roscoe beat him physically and mentally.
At the age of 10, Smith started rapping, inspired by the hip-hop crew The Treacherous Three. Smith, then sixteen, was recording demo cassettes in his grandparents’ house in 1984. His jazz saxophonist grandfather gave him a $2,000 gift that included two turntables, an audio mixer, and an amplifier. Smith made amends with his father during this time, who “made amends for a lot of things” by helping him get his music career off the ground. His mother bought him a Korg drum machine with her tax refund as another example of her support for his musical endeavors.
According to Smith, he “was already a rapper” when he acquired musical instruments from his relatives. The youth in this area develop in rap. Growing up in a Spanish-speaking home is similar to speaking Spanish. At the same time, promoter-manager Russell Simmons and NYU student Rick Rubin formed the independent Def Jam record company. Smith created and mixed his own recordings using the mixer he had inherited from his grandfather and sent them to several record labels in New York City, including Def Jam.
LL Cool J Musical career
Smith revealed in the VH1 documentary Planet Rock: The Story of Hip Hop and the Crack Generation that he was originally known as J-Ski but changed it because he did not want his stage name to be linked to the rise of the cocaine culture. Rappers who use “Ski” or “Blow” as part of their stage names, such as Kurtis Blow and Joeski Love, were depicted in the 1983 Scarface remake as being associated with the rise of the cocaine culture. Smith was signed by Def Jam under his new stage name LL Cool J, which stands for Ladies Love Cool James and was created by his buddy and fellow rapper Mikey D. This led to the release of his first official record, the 12-inch single “I Need a Beat” (1984), which was his new stage name.
The song’s rapid rhymes and sparse sounds made it a hard-hitting, street-smart b-boy number. In a later interview, Smith said of his hunt for a record company, “I sent my demo to many different companies, but it was Def Jam where I found my home.” Smith performed his first concert as a professional the same year at Manhattan Center High School. They pushed the lunchroom tables together as me and my DJ, Cut Creator, started playing, LL Cool J recalled in a subsequent interview. As soon as it was over, girls started yelling and demanding signatures.
I immediately declared, “This is what I want to do.” Over 100,000 copies of LL’s debut single were sold, establishing Def Jam as a record company and Smith as a rapper. The singles “I Need a Beat” and “Rock Hard” by the Beastie Boys helped Def Jam secure a distribution contract with Columbia Records the following year.
Critical acclaim for Radio’s innovative music and LL’s potent lyrics came as no surprise. When it was released on Def Jam Recordings in the United States on November 18, 1985, Radio achieved a high level of commercial success and sales for a hip-hop album at the time. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, the album sold over 500,000 copies in its first five months after it was released and over 1 million by 1988. On the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, Radio reached at number six, while on the Billboard 200 albums chart, it peaked at number forty-six.
On December 28, 1985, it debuted on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and spent 47 weeks there. On January 11, 1986, it debuted on the Pop Albums chart and spent 38 weeks there. After receiving a gold certification in the US on April 14, 1986, the album received platinum status from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in 1989 with sales exceeding one million copies. The singles “I Can’t Live Without My Radio” and “Rock the Bells” were instrumental in the album’s platinum certification. In the end, 1,500,000 copies were sold in the US
Along with Kurtis Blow and Run-D.M.C., LL Cool J was one of the first hip-hop performers to reach mainstream popularity thanks to the breakthrough success of his smash single “I Need a Beat” and the Radio LP. As LL joined the 1986–1987 Raising Hell tour as the opening act for Run-D.M.C. and the Beastie Boys, he was given gigs at bigger venues. Being the first hip hop act to perform on American Bandstand and appearing on Diana Ross’ 1987 television special Red Hot Rhythm & Blues were both significant turning points in LL’s success.
The album’s commercial success also aided in building Rick Rubin’s reputation and discography as a record producer. A trio of albums produced in New York City and directed by Rubin—Radio, Raising Hell, and Licensed to Ill—helped hip-hop become more diverse. “REDUCED BY RICK RUBIN” appears as Rubin’s production credit on the album’s back cover, referencing his straightforward approach to music production that gave the record its bare-bones and gritty sound. Future hip-hop productions would greatly benefit from Rubin’s production technique, which would become one of his production hallmarks. Before leaving Def Jam to move to Los Angeles, Rubin’s early hip-hop production work was essential in establishing his history as a pioneer of the genre and his standing in the music business.
1987–1993: Breakthrough and success
The L.A. Posse and DJ Pooh produced LL Cool J’s second album, Bigger and Deffer, which was released in 1987. With more than two million copies sold in the US alone, this is one of his best-selling albums overall. It held the top spot on Billboard’s R&B albums chart for 11 weeks. On the Pop albums chart of Billboard, it peaked at No. 3. The hits from the album included “I’m Bad,” the ground-breaking “I Need Love”—LL’s first #1 R&B and Top 40 hit—as well as “Kanday,” “Bristol Hotel,” and “Go Cut Creator Go.” While Bigger and Deffer, a hugely successful film, was created by the L.A.
The only person still willing to work on producing LL Cool J’s third album Walking with a Panther was Dwayne Simon of Posse, which at the time consisted of Bobby “Bobcat” Ervin, Darryl Pierce, and Bobby “Simon” who, in his own words, was most instrumental in creating the sound of the LP. The album, which was released in 1989, was a huge success and featured many singles that reached the top of the charts (Going Back to Cali, which was first included on the soundtrack for the 1987 film Less than Zero, “I’m That Type of Guy,” “Big Ole Butt,” and “One Shot at Love”).
Although the album had a strong commercial appeal, the hip-hop culture frequently criticized it for being overly commercial, materialistic, and overly focused on love ballads. Due to the album’s overtly commercial and pop goals, his fan base started to dwindle. Billboard reports that the album, which was LL Cool J’s second #1 R&B Album and spent five weeks at the top of the chart, peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard 200.
His fourth studio album, Mama Said Knock You Out, was released by LL in 1990. The Marley Marl-produced album won praise from critics and finally achieved double Platinum status, according to the RIAA, selling over two million copies. With Mama Said Knock You Out, LL Cool J demonstrated to critics that he could continue to be current and hard-edged despite their reservations about his last album. In 1992, the title tune earned LL a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance.
Mama Said Knock You Out became LL’s best-selling album of all time (as of 2002) thanks to the album’s enormous success, which also cemented his reputation as a hip-hop legend. LL also recorded a rap solo for Michael Jackson’s unreleased song “Serious Effect” at this time. The song was later leaked online.
1993–2005: Continued success and career prominence
In March 1993, LL Cool J released 14 Shots to the Dome after appearing in The Hard Way and Toys. The album included Lords of the Underground on “NFA-No Frontin’ Allowed” as well as four singles: “How I’m Comin’,” “Back Seat (of My Jeep),” “Pink Cookies in a Plastic Bag Getting Crushed by Buildings,” and “Stand By Your Man.” The album reached gold status in June.
Before releasing his album Mr. Smith (1995), which went on to sell over two million copies, LL Cool J starred in the NBC series In the House. There were three singles from it: “Hey Lover,” “Doin’ It,” and “Loungin.” Boyz II Men were a part of “Hey Lover,” which contained a sample of Michael Jackson’s “The Lady in My Life.” He also won a Grammy for the song. In the album’s “I Shot Ya Remix” song, Foxy Brown made her solo vocal debut. This “greatest hits” collection, which Def Jam released in 1996, provides a solid overview of Cool J’s career, from the relentless minimalism of his debut singles like “Rock the Bells” to the subsequent smooth-talking braggadocio.
Here, there is a strong representation of classic albums like Bigger and Deffer and Mama Said Knock You Out. His sloppy rendition of the Rufus and Chaka Khan song “Ain’t Nobody” was featured on the Beavis and Butthead Do America soundtrack and made available as a single in December 1996. In the UK, where it topped the UK Singles Chart in early 1997, LL Cool J’s rendition of “Ain’t Nobody” enjoyed considerable popularity. He released the album Phenomenon later that year. “Father” and “Phenomenon” were among the singles. “4, 3, 2, 1″—the second single from Phenomenon—introduced DMX and Canibus and featured Method Man, Redman, and Master P.
The album G.O.A.T., which stands for “Greatest of All Time,” was released by LL Cool J in 2000. It received a platinum certification and debuted at the top of the Billboard album rankings. In the album’s liner notes, LL Cool J expressed gratitude to Canibus “for the inspiration.” The following LL Cool J album, 10, was released in 2002. It was the rapper’s ninth studio album overall (tenth if you count his greatest hits collection All World). It featured the singles “Paradise” (with Amerie) and the No. 1 R&B hit “Luv U Better,” which was created by the Neptunes. The duet “All I Have” by Jennifer Lopez from 2003 was added to later pressings of the CD.
The album was certified platinum. The DEFinition, LL Cool J’s tenth album, was released on August 31, 2004. The album debuted on the Billboard charts at position No. 4. Timbaland, 7 Aurelius, R. Kelly, and others contributed to the production. Timbaland’s “Headsprung,” the album’s lead single, reached its highest point at No. 7 on the Hip-Hop and R&B singles list and No. 16 on the Billboard Hot 100. The second single was the “Hush” track, which was produced by 7 Aurelius and reached its highest position at No. 14 on the Billboard Hip-Hop and R&B chart and No. 26 on the Hot 100.
2006–2012: Exit 13 and touring
Todd Smith, LL Cool J’s eleventh album, was released on April 11th, 2006. It has partnerships with Freeway, Teairra Mari, Juelz Santana, 112, Ginuwine, and Teairra Mari. The Jermaine Dupri-produced song “Control Myself” with Jennifer Lopez served as the album’s lead single. On January 2, 2006, they filmed the music video for “Control Myself” at Sony Studios in New York. The second video, “Freeze” with Lyfe Jennings, was made by Hype Williams.
LL Cool J, who has only ever been associated with Def Jam Recordings, revealed information about his upcoming final album in July 2006. Exit 13 is the title of the album. Former Queens rapper 50 Cent was supposed to serve as executive producer of the record. Exit 13 was supposed to come out in the fall of 2006, but after a two-year delay, it finally did on September 9, 2008, without 50 Cent serving as executive producer. Some of the tunes produced with 50 made it to Exit 13, and tracks that the two collaborated on were leaked to the internet.
The mixtape “The Return of the G.O.A.T.” was released by LL Cool J in collaboration with DJ Kay Slay. It was his debut mixtape in his 24-year career and featured LL Cool J freestyling alongside other rappers covering his songs. On June 1, 2008, a song called “Hi Haterz” was leaked online. Over Maino’s “Hi Hater” instrumental, LL Cool J raps in the song. On Janet Jackson’s Rock Witchu tour, he joined her and only performed in Los Angeles, Chicago, Toronto, and Kansas City.
A song about the NCIS TV show was published by LL Cool J in September 2009. It’s a single, and you can get it on iTunes. The inspiration for the new song came from his time acting as Sam Hanna, a special agent. According to LL Cool J, “This song is the musical representation of what I felt after meeting with NCIS agents, seasoned Marines, and Navy SEALs.” “It stands for the accumulated energy in the space. I was so motivated that I wrote the song while on stage.
LL Cool J was revealed to be Z-Trip’s special guest at the Red Bull Thre3Style showcase at South by Southwest in March 2011. The rap and DJ superstars’ creative partnership officially began with this. The two spoke about their partnership during an interview with Carson Daly. Both musicians have expressed interest in working together again in the future, and LL Cool J has referred to them as a “organic” duo. One early track that made use of LL’s skills was Z-Trip’s remix of the single “Days Are Forgotten” by British rock band Kasabian, which was dubbed as the “Hottest Record In The World” by famous DJ Zane Lowe and gained acclaim in both Belgium and the UK.
The duo offered the song “Super Baller” as a free download in January 2012 to commemorate the New York Giants’ triumph in the Super Bowl. Since 2011, the two have been on the road together, and additional performances are scheduled through at least 2012.
2012–present: Authentic, G.O.A.T. 2 and future projects
LL Cool J released “Ratchet,” a brand-new single from his Authentic Hip-Hop album, on October 6, 2012. Then, on November 3, 2012, LL worked with Joe and the production team Trackmasters to create his second song, “Take It”.
The name of LL’s forthcoming album, Authentic Hip-Hop, was altered to Authentic on February 8, 2013, and its new release date was set for April 30, 2013. Also revealed was a fresh cover. Around the same time, it was revealed that LL Cool J and Van Halen guitarist Eddie Van Halen worked together on two of the album’s songs.
LL Cool J was named a nominee for the 2014 class of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame on October 16, 2013. LL revealed in October 2014 that G.O.A.T. 2, the title of his 14th studio album, would be released in 2015. The album was placed on hold despite LL’s claims that “the concept behind the album was to give upcoming artists an opportunity to shine, and put myself in the position where I have to spit bars with some of the hardest rhymers in the game.” The explanation was provided by LL Cool J, who said, “It was good, but I didn’t feel like it was ready yet.”
LL was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on January 21, 2016.
In March 2016, LL posted on social media that he was retiring, but he soon took it back and said a new album was coming. From the 54th Grammy Awards on February 12, 2012, until the 58th Grammy Awards on February 15, 2016, LL hosted the Grammy Awards Show for five years in a row.
LL Cool J was put forward for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in October 2018. It was revealed in September 2019 that LL had renewed his contract with Def Jam for upcoming album releases. Q-Tip is directing the recording of his upcoming album.
After testing positive for COVID-19 on December 29, 2021, LL Cool J postponed his appearance at Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve With Ryan Seacrest 2022.
On March 22, 2022, LL hosted the iHeartRadio Music Awards.
LL Cool J Acting career
While LL Cool J had his acting debut in the low-key high school football film Wildcats, he first appeared as a rapper in the film Krush Groove, when he performed “I Can’t Live Without My Radio”. He was cast in Barry Levinson’s 1992 picture Toys as Captain Patrick Zevo. He played the lead role in his own television sitcom, In the House, from 1995 to 1999. He played a former running back for the Oakland Raiders who, due to financial hardship, was compelled to rent a portion of his home to a single mother and her two children; one of the children moved out with the mother before the third season.
In the seventh installment of the Halloween series, Halloween H20, released in 1998, LL Cool J portrayed security guard Ronny. He co-starred in the Renny Harlin horror/comedy Deep Blue Sea in 1999 as Preacher, the chef. In the film In Too Deep, he played the mob boss Dwayne Gittens, also known as “God,” to rave reviews. Later same year, he appeared in Oliver Stone’s drama Any Given Sunday as Julian Washington, a gifted but self-centered running back on the Miami Sharks, a fictional professional football team. He allegedly engaged in an actual fistfight with co-star Jamie Foxx as they were filming a fight scene. The following two years saw LL Cool J in films such as Rollerball, Deliver Us from Eva, S.W.A.T., and Mindhunters.
He made a comeback to television in 2005, appearing in an episode titled “Acceptance” of the Fox medical drama House as a death row convict who had succumbed to an unidentified illness. He starred in the 2006 film Last Holiday as Queen Latifah’s potential love interest. He also appeared as a guest star on the television show 30 Rock in the episode “The Source Awards” from 2007. Ridikulous, a hip-hop producer, is the character Tracy Jordan thinks will kill him. LL Cool J made two appearances on Sesame Street during its 39th season, first introducing the word of the day—”Unanimous”—in episode 4169 (September 22, 2008) and then performing “The Addition Expedition” in episode 4172 (September 30, 2008).
He started playing the lead character in the CBS police drama NCIS: Los Angeles in 2009. It is a spin-off of NCIS, which is a spin-off of the naval legal drama JAG, and it aired for 14 seasons. NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna, a former Navy SEAL with fluency in Arabic and knowledge of West Asian cultures, was portrayed by LL Cool J. Although the characters were first seen in an episode of the parent show’s crossover in April 2009, the series didn’t premiere until the fall of that year.
For his contributions to the show, LL won a 2013 Teen Choice Award for Choice TV Actor: Action. Following the NCIS: Los Angeles series finale in May 2023, it was revealed that LL would reprise Sam Hanna’s role as a recurrent guest star in the third season of NCIS: Hawai’i.
The sports dramedy Grudge Match featured LL as a gym owner in December 2013. The program Lip Sync Battle was hosted by LL from 2015 until 2019. As seen in the movie’s trailer, he was also chosen to play Beth’s father in Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising, but his scenes weren’t included in the finished product.
LL Cool J Other ventures
In the middle of the 1980s, LL Cool J worked behind the scenes for the hip-hop apparel brand TROOP. He also started the “Todd Smith” apparel line. The company created well-liked urban clothing. Designs drew inspiration from various hip-hop stars as well as from LL’s lyrics and tattoos. Four books have been authored by LL Cool J, including the autobiography I Make My Own Rules, which she co-wrote with Karen Hunter in 1997. And The Winner Is…, his second book, was a children’s book released in 2002. The Platinum Workout is a workout manual that LL Cool J and his personal trainer Dave “Scooter” Honig wrote in 2006. His fourth book, LL Cool J (Hip-Hop Stars), was cowritten in 2007 by Chuck D of Public Enemy and hip-hop historian Dustin Shekell.
LL Cool J has launched a number of music-related enterprises during the course of his career. In 1993, he established the music production firm Rock The Bells as well as the P.O.G. (Power Of God) record label. He featured performers including AMyth, Smokeman, Natice, Chantel Jones, and Simone Starks on his Rock The Bells label. The Deep Blue Sea soundtrack, which supported the 1999 film of the same name, was also produced by Rock the Bells Records. Rufus “Scola” Waller joined the label as well but was eventually let go when it closed.
In September 2008, LL Cool J established and launched Boomdizzle.com, a musical label and social networking platform. The website was created to allow people to post music from budding musicians, primarily those in the hip-hop genre, and rate songs through competitions, voting, and other group activities.
LL Cool J made an entrance during WrestleMania 31 in March 2015.
LL Cool J Legacy
Along with Kurtis Blow and Run-DMC, LL Cool J was one of the first hip-hop bands to see mainstream popularity thanks to the breakthrough success of his smash single “I Need a Beat” and the Radio LP. As LL joined the 1986–1987 Raising Hell tour as the opening act for Run-D.M.C. and the Beastie Boys, he was given gigs at bigger venues. Another important turning point in LL’s success was his debut as the first hip-hop artist on American Bandstand.
The album’s commercial success also aided in building Rick Rubin’s reputation and discography as a record producer. A trio of albums produced in New York City and directed by Rubin—Radio, Raising Hell, and Licensed to Ill—helped hip-hop become more diverse. “REDUCED BY RICK RUBIN” appears as Rubin’s production credit on the album’s back cover, referencing his straightforward approach to music production that gave the record its bare-bones and gritty sound. Future hip-hop productions would greatly benefit from Rubin’s production technique, which would become one of his production hallmarks. Before leaving Def Jam to move to Los Angeles, Rubin produced early hip-hop music that helped cement his history as a pioneer of the genre and his standing in the music business.
The debut of Radio coincided with the development of the new school scene and subculture, which also signaled the start of the “golden age” of hip-hop and the displacement of old school hip hop. Old school disco rap, which had been popular before the mid-1980s, came to an end at this time in hip hop, and a new genre known as “ghetto blasters” began to emerge. Along with Run-D.M.C.’s debut album, Radio was one of the first songs to merge the vocal style of hip hop and rapping with the musical arrangements and rock music’s riffing sound, ushering in the rap rock hybrid sound.
Drum machine-led minimalism, frequently laced with rock influences, as well as boasts about rapping delivered in an angry, self-assured manner were initially what defined the burgeoning new-school scene. The musicians portrayed a strong, cool, street b-boy mentality in both image and song. These components made the performers popular in 1984 sound dated by comparison to the 1970s P-Funk and disco-influenced clothing, live bands, synthesizers, and party lyrics. Early hip hop was characterized by long, jam-like songs like “King Tim III,” “Rapper’s Delight,” and “The Breaks,” but new-school artists tended to write shorter songs that would be easier to understand and have a chance of being played on the radio, and they created more cohesive LPs than their old-school counterparts. This style is exemplified by LL Cool J’s Radio.
The song “I Can’t Live Without My Radio” is a prime example of the new school style; it’s a loud, rebellious declaration of public loyalty to his boom box and was dubbed “quintessential rap in its directness, immediacy and assertion of self” by The New York Times. The 1985 movie Krush Groove, which chronicled the growth of Def Jam and new school artists like Run-D.M.C. and the Fat Boys, included a scene featuring it.
As well as other new-school recordings by musicians like Run-D.M.C., Schooly D, T La Rock, and Steady B, the vigor and intense delivery and melodic style of rapping included on Radio proved to be influential on hip-hop acts of the “golden age” like Boogie Down Productions and Public Enemy. One of the record labels that contributed to the development of early hip hop and which, ironically, turned down LL’s demo tape, Sugar Hill Records, closed as a result of the downfall of the old-school style of hip hop.
The album’s economic success and distinctive sound quickly attracted a rise in multiracial audiences and listeners, furthering the legacy of both the album and hip hop music, as it served as an illustration of the artistic possibilities of hip-hop music.
The first rapper to win Kennedy Center Honors was LL Cool J in 2017.
His Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction took place in 2021, and he received a prize for musical excellence.
LL Cool J Personal life
From 1992 through 1994, Smith was romantically involved with producer Quincy Jones’ daughter Kidada. In 1995, he wed Simone Johnson. The pair got together in 1987 and now has four kids.
Smith discovered that Eugene Griffith and Ellen Hightower adopted his mother in a Finding Your Roots show. Smith’s biological grandparents were identified through DNA analysis by the genetic genealogist for the show CeCe Moore as Ethel Mae Jolly and Nathaniel Christy Lewis. Boxer John Henry Lewis, a member of the Hall of Fame, was Smith’s biological great-uncle.
LL Cool J Political involvement
George Pataki’s campaign for a third term as governor of New York received support from LL Cool J in 2002. LL Cool J spoke on the RIAA lawsuits against Americans who shared or downloaded copyrighted music over peer-to-peer networks in 2003 during a hearing before a U.S. Senate Committee. He made claims that illicit file sharing was affecting his sales and that his session musicians “can’t live” as a result of the lost money, which looked to support the RIAA’s argument. Chuck D offered a counterargument, claiming that free file-sharing might be used as a marketing strategy and that the sector was being overly cautious of its rights.
LL additionally expressed his support for Democratic New York State Senator Malcolm Smith during an appearance on the senator’s local television program. Smith and LL collaborated to organize the yearly Jump and Ball Tournament in the Queens community of St. Albans, where the rapper was raised. In a February 10, 2012, broadcast interview with CNN host Piers Morgan, LL Cool J expressed support for President Barack Obama and attributed criticism of his administration to Republican resistance intended to “make it look like you have a coordination problem.”
No one “should assume that I’m a Democrat either,” he quickly added. You know I’m an Independent? Obama was listed among the persons LL Cool J respected in his 2020 book LL Cool J’s Platinum 360 Diet and Lifestyle. He claimed that Obama had “accomplished what people thought was impossible.”
LL Cool J Philanthropy
In his native Queens, New York, LL Cool J runs his own nonprofit organization called Jump & Ball, which provides young people with an athletic and team-building program. Additionally, he supports numerous philanthropic causes that support arts, music, and literacy programs for children and schools.
LL Cool J Discography
- Radio (1985)
- Bigger and Deffer (1987)
- Walking with a Panther (1989)
- Mama Said Knock You Out (1990)
- 14 Shots to the Dome (1993)
- Mr. Smith (1995)
- Phenomenon (1997)
- G.O.A.T. (2000)
- 10 (2002)
- The DEFinition (2004)
- Todd Smith (2006)
- Exit 13 (2008)
- Authentic (2013)
Who Is LL Cool J?
The abbreviation LL Cool J stands for “Ladies Love Cool James.” In 1984, LL Cool J signed with the budding hip-hop company Def Jam Records. Following a run of successful singles, which were featured on albums including Bigger and Deffer, Walking with a Panther, Mama Said Knock You Out, 14 Shots to the Dome, and Mr. Smith, LL decided to pursue acting. She appeared in films like B.A.P.S., Halloween H2O, and Any Given Sunday. He started his tenure on the well-liked detective show NCIS: Los Angeles in 2009.
Is LL Cool J related to Michael Jackson?
Therefore, LL Cool J has no familial ties to Michael Jackson. Tito Jackson was born on October 15, 1953 in Gary, Indiana, under the full name Toriano Adaryll Jackson.
How did LL Cool J make his money?
LL Cool J’s current net worth is assessed at $120 million by Celebrity Net Worth. LL’s success as a rapper and actor has primarily contributed to his wealth. He owns two record labels, two best hits collections, 13 studio albums, and a record label social media website.
What is LL Cool J famous for?
James Todd Smith, better known by his stage name LL Cool J, was an American rapper and actor who was born on January 14, 1968 in Bay Shore, Long Island, New York. He was a key figure in the development of new-school rap in the middle of the 1980s and one of the few hip-hop artists to maintain a lucrative recording career for more than ten years.
Where is LL Cool J originally from?
On January 14, 1968, in St. Albans, Queens, New York City, James Todd Smith, the only child of James and Ondrea Smith, gave birth to LL Cool J, a rapper and actor. Early in James’ youth, his mother and father’s marriage descended into violence, and when he was four years old, they divorced.
How much does LL Cool J make annually?
Regarding his yearly pay, nothing is known. On the other hand, his estimated net worth is $120 million.
How many businesses does LL Cool J own?
Over the course of his career, LL Cool J has started a number of music-related businesses. He established the Rock The Bells music production company and the P.O.G. (Power Of God) music label in 1993. His Rock The Bells label had AMyth, Smokeman, Natice, Chantel Jones, and Simone Starks among its roster of performers. The music for the 1999 movie with the same name, Deep Blue Sea, was also handled by Rock the Bells Records.
Also signed to the label was Rufus “Scola” Waller, who was fired when the business folded. LL Cool J founded and launched Boomdizzle.com, a record label and social networking site, in September 2008. The website was developed to allow users to post music, primarily in the hip-hop genre, and review songs through competitions, voting, and other community activities.