didn't see nobody making songs called Sweet about LL when he dropped GOAT now did we? lol Gotta earn that respect
Jan.14th – LL Cool J was born James Todd Smith in Bay Shore, New York on this day in 1968.
As a child LL Cool J(an acronym for Ladies Love Cool James) began rapping and making beats at 10 years of age. His grandmother bought him d.j. equipment to keep him from riding motorcycles and participating in other dangerous stunts.
Influenced by Kurtis Blow and Run-DMC , LL developed his own rapping style reminiscent of T. La Rock with the long words and extensive vocabulary in his rhymes.
LL Cool J would become the first signed artist to the then brand new Def Jam Records started by Rick Rubin and Russell Simmons. His classic debut single “I Need A Beat” would be Def Jam’s first catalogued release.
The track ushered in a new era of rap music with its stripped down production and wordy rhyme play which harked back to the early stripped down raw hip-hop of ols school NYC black parties.
During this time LL even wrote the lyrics to the Run-DMC classic track “Can You Rock It Like This” from their 1985 sophomore album “King Of Rock”.
LL’s chiselled physique and good looks made him hip-hop’s 1st sex symbol. LL Cool J would have a female fan base and support that would last him for the ages.
This new found fame would now set the stage for his classic platinum-selling debut album “Radio”. “Radio” was released in 1985 and spawned the hits “Rock The Bells”, “I Can Give You More” , “You’ll Rock” , “I Need A Beat” and “I Can’t Live Without My Radio” , which he also performed in a film stealing scene in the 1985 Russell Simmons semi-biopic “Krush Groove”.
LL’s new found fame threatened to eclipse that of the then red hot Fat Boys , Whodini and even his heroes Run-DMC. LL’s aggressive and ferocious rhyme style made him an instant favourite as a battle rapper. His lyrical wars over the years with the likes of Ice-T , Canibus , Wyclef Jean and especially of those with the legendary Kool Moe Dee were classic.
LL’s sophomore set “Bigger And Deffer” was released in 1987 and went platinum as well. “Bigger And Deffer” produced the hit singles “I’m Bad” , “Go Cut Creator Go” and rap music’s first commercially successful ballad “I Need Love”. “Bigger And Deffer” also contained the cult favourite album cuts “Get Down” , “Kanday” and “Bristol Hotel”.
LL Cool J has released 10 more albums since , most notably 1989’s “Walking With A Panther” , 1990’s “Mama Said Knock You Out” , 1997’s “Phenomenon” and 2000’s “G.O.A.T.”(an acronym for Greatest Of All Time).
LL’s last album was 2008’s “Exit 13”.
His discography of hit singles spans over 25 years with classics like “The Boomin’ System” , “Going Back To Cali” , “Doin’ It” , “To Da Break Of Dawn” , “Big Ole Butt” , “Imagine That” , “Loungin” , “Jinglin’ Baby” , “Mama Said Knock You Out” , “Headsprung” , “Pink Cookies In A Plastic Bag Getting Crushed By Buildings” , “Hey Lover” , “Around The Way Girl” and “I Shot Ya” to name a few.
Over the years Uncle L as he is sometimes known has collaborated with the likes of Boyz II Men , Foxy Brown , Canibus , Jamie Foxx , Ne-Yo , Jennifer Lopez , Mary J. Blige , Total , Lyfe Jennings , Method Man , DMX , Keith Murray and the late Notorious B.I.G.
LL Cool J’s film career has been almost as prolific as his music having appeared in countless films such as “S.W.A.T.” , “Rollerball” , “Wildcats’ , “Deliver Us From Eva” , “Kingdom Come” , “Charlie’s Angels” and “Any Given Sunday” just to name a few.
LL has also appeared on television’s “Oz” , “30 Rock” and “All That”.
From 1995 to 1999 , LL Cool J starred as retired football player Marion Hill on the NBC sitcom “In The House” which later switched over to the UPN network. “In The House” was a spin-off from NBC’s “The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air”.
LL Cool J currently stars as Special Agent Sam Hanna on CBS’s “NCIS : Los Angeles”.
LL Cool J has won Grammy Awards , MTV Video Music Awards and NAACP Image Awards as well as Billboard, Soul Train and New York Music Awards.
In 2007 , LL was inducted into the Long Island Music Hall Of Fame.
LL Cool J ha started 2 record labels P.O.G. (Power Of God) Records and Rock The Bells Records which was also the name of the music production company he set up as well.
LL launched his own clothing line called Tood Smith and in the 1990’s was instrumental in helping get FUBU and TROOP off the ground.
LL Cool J published his memoirs in 1998 called “I Make My Own Rules”. He also wrote a children’s book that published in 2002 called “And The Winner Is” as well as a fitness book with his personal trainer Dave Honig called “The Platinum Workout” in 2006. He published his 4th book “LL Cool J”(Hip-Hop Star) co-written by Dustin Shekell with a foreword written by Yours Truly Chuck D.
LL Cool J has had one of the longest and most successful careers in hip-hop history and is truly regarded by many as The Greatest Of All Time.