LL Cool J

Real Name:
James Todd Smith
Profile:
Born James Todd Smith on January 14, 1968, Ladies Love Cool James (LL Cool J) began his career in Queens, N.Y. when he was 16 years old, though he had been rapping since the age of nine. His grandfather bought him a mixing table and LL began to record tapes in his home. His father was Jimmy Nunya

Inevitably, he sent his tapes to various record labels and finally interested Def Jam Productions. In 1984 they signed him and released his first single, "I Need A Beat." The single sold more than 100,000 copies and established LL Cool J in the rap industry. His debut album, I Can't Live Without My Radio, (which went platinum) was recorded in 1985 after LL left high school to pursue a career in music. 1987 marked the release of his second album Bigger and Deffer, which soared to the No. 3 spot on the pop charts with the help of the hit single, "I Need Love".

LL's ability to intuitively combine rap and pop is his strong point, but at the same time it has cost him the respect of many rap fans who claimed he has a sold out. The successful single, "Goin' Back to Cali," appeared on the Less Than Zero soundtrack in 1988, further boosting his crossover popularity. In 1990 LL struck again with Mama Said Knock You Out, which marked him as a rap super-guru and pop deity. After this ascension, he starred in two movies and appeared and performed at the MTV Inaugural Ball in honor of President Clinton. He released 14 Shots to the Dome in 1993. LL returned to the studio to record the double platinum album Mr. Smith in 1995.

Throughout the mid-90s, LL continued to branch out into acting, taking roles in films such as Woo, Halloween: H20, and the Oliver Stone football opus Any Given Sunday. During this time, he released All World: Greatest Hits (1996) and Phenomenon (1997), an album that did not do well commercially or critically as it appeared LL was more interested in Hollywood than the hip-hop scene. LL confirmed his attraction to acting over the next few years, taking a small part in 2000’s Charlie’s Angels and then scoring a starring role in the 2002 remake of Rollerball. In between, he found time to release G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time), a self-assured collection that highlighted LL’s classic lyrical flow and gave him some much-needed cred in the ever-changing rap landscape.

With his 2002 release, 10, LL reaffirms the strength of his position in the popular culture of music. “I consider this disc to be a milestone in my life,” says LL Cool J. “A tenth album for anybody is truly an amazing moment.” While the world of hip-hop has not, historically, provided much stability or staying power for the artists that shaped it, LL Cool J has managed to take a stand within it, combining rap and pop influences that appeal to both realms.
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Singles & EPs

LL Cool J - Stand By Your Man album art LL Cool J Stand By Your Man (Maxi, Single) Def Jam Recordings US 1993 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Twelve Inch Mixes album art LL Cool J Twelve Inch Mixes (Maxi) Columbia UK & Europe 1993 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Hey Lover album art LL Cool J Hey Lover (Maxi, Single) Def Jam Recordings UK 1995 Sell This Version
none LL Cool J - Papa Luv It / Everyday It Rains album art LL Cool J / Mary J. Blige LL Cool J / Mary J. Blige - Papa Luv It / Everyday It Rains(12", Promo) Def Jam Recordings none US 1995 Sell This Version
UNC-001 LL Cool J - The Life... / No Airplay album art LL Cool J The Life... / No Airplay(12", Promo) Def Jam Recordings UNC-001 US 1995 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Loungin album art LL Cool J Loungin (Single, Maxi) Def Jam Recordings US 1996 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Sittin' Up In My Room (Remix) album art Brandy (2) Featuring LL Cool J Brandy (2) Featuring LL Cool J - Sittin' Up In My Room (Remix) (Single, Maxi) Arista US 1996 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Doin It album art LL Cool J Doin It (Single, Maxi) Def Jam Recordings, Def Jam Music Group Inc. Europe 1996 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Ain't Nobody album art LL Cool J Ain't Nobody (Maxi, Single) Geffen Records UK 1996 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Ain't Nobody / Pimp'n Ain't Ez album art LL Cool J / Madd Head LL Cool J / Madd Head - Ain't Nobody / Pimp'n Ain't Ez (Single) Geffen Records US 1996 Sell This Version
578 990-2 LL Cool J - I Need Love / Mama Said Knock You Out album art LL Cool J I Need Love / Mama Said Knock You Out(CD, Single) Mercury, Def Jam Music Group Inc. 578 990-2 Netherlands 1996 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Phenomenon album art LL Cool J Phenomenon (Single, Maxi) ZAC Records Australia 1997 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Father album art LL Cool J Father (Maxi, Single) Def Jam Recordings UK 1997 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - I Make My Own Rules album art LL Cool J With Flea, Dave Navarro And Chad Smith LL Cool J With Flea, Dave Navarro And Chad Smith - I Make My Own Rules (Single) Warner Bros. Records US 1997 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - 4,3,2,1 album art LL Cool J 4,3,2,1 Def Jam Recordings US 1997 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Hit 'Em High (The Monstars' Anthem) album art B Real*, Busta Rhymes, Coolio, LL Cool J & Method Man B Real*, Busta Rhymes, Coolio, LL Cool J & Method Man - Hit 'Em High (The Monstars' Anthem) (Single, Maxi) Warner Sunset Records, Atlantic, Atlantic UK 1996 Sell This Version
DEF 181-1 LL Cool J - Candy album art LL Cool J Candy(12", Promo) Def Jam Recordings DEF 181-1 US 1997 Sell This Version
566 120-2 LL Cool J - Candy / Father album art LL Cool J Candy / Father(CD, Single, Car) Def Jam Recordings, Mercury 566 120-2 Australasia 1997 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Curious album art Levert Sweat Gill* Featuring L.L. Cool J.*, Busta Rhymes and MC Lyte Levert Sweat Gill* Featuring L.L. Cool J.*, Busta Rhymes and MC Lyte - Curious (Single, Maxi) EastWest Records America Europe 1998 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - No Question album art Allure (3) Featuring LL Cool J Allure (3) Featuring LL Cool J - No Question (Single) Crave, Crave, Track Masters USA & Canada 1997 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - The Ripper Strikes Back album art LL Cool J The Ripper Strikes Back Def Jam Recordings UK 1998 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Hot, Hot, Hot album art LL Cool J Hot, Hot, Hot (Maxi, Single) Def Jam Recordings France 1997 Sell This Version
582 529-1 LL Cool J - Father / The Word Is Love (Say The Word) album art LL Cool J, Voices Of Life* LL Cool J, Voices Of Life* - Father / The Word Is Love (Say The Word)(12", EP, MP) AM:PM 582 529-1 UK 1998 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Zoom album art Dr. Dre & LL Cool J Dr. Dre & LL Cool J - Zoom (Single) Interscope Records UK 1998 Sell This Version
LL Cool J - Incredible album art Keith Murray Featuring LL Cool J Keith Murray Featuring LL Cool J - Incredible (Single, Maxi) Jive Europe 1998 Sell This Version