Image of LL Cool J

LL Cool J

1968-01-14 Bay Shore, Long Island, New York, USA

Image of LL Cool J


James Todd Smith, better known as LL Cool J (acronym for Ladies Love Cool James), is an American rapper, songwriter, record producer, and actor. He is one of the earliest rappers to achieve commercial success, alongside fellow new school hip hop acts Beastie Boys and Run-DMC. Signed to Def Jam Recordings in 1984, his breakthrough came with his single "I Need a Beat" and his landmark debut album, Radio (1985). He achieved further commercial and critical success with the albums Bigger and Deffer (1987), Walking with a Panther (1989), Mama Said Knock You Out (1990), Mr. Smith (1995), and Phenomenon (1997). His twelfth album, Exit 13 (2008), was his last in his long-tenured deal with Def Jam. A two-time Grammy Award winner, LL Cool J is known for hip hop songs such as "Going Back to Cali", "I'm Bad", "The Boomin' System", "Rock the Bells", and "Mama Said Knock You Out", as well as R&B hits such as "Doin' It", "I Need Love", "Around the Way Girl" and "Hey Lover". In 2010, VH1 placed him on their "100 Greatest Artists Of All Time" list. In 2017, LL Cool J became the first rapper to receive the Kennedy Center Honors. In 2021, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with an award for Musical Excellence. While he first appeared as a rapper in the movie Krush Groove (performing "I Can't Live Without My Radio"), his first acting part was a small role in a high school football movie called Wildcats. He continued to work in movies from then until 1995 when he landed his own television sitcom, In the House (1995-2000). He has appeared in numerous films, including Last Holiday, Edison, Mindhunters, S.W.A.T., Deliver Us from Eva, Rollerball, Charlie's Angels, In Too Deep, Any Given Sunday, Deep Blue Sea, Halloween H20, B.A.P.S., Toys, and The Hard Way. In 2005, he returned to television in a guest starring role on the FOX medical drama House. He also guest starred on 30 Rock in 2007, and on Sesame Street 's 39th season where he introduced the word of the day, "Unanimous” and performed "The Addition Expedition" in episode 4172 (Sept. 30, 2008). As of 2011, he stars as Special Agent Sam Hanna on CBS's police procedural NCIS: L.A., a spin-off of NCIS. He was also the host of MTV's Lip Sync Battle.


A GRAMMY Salute To 50 Years Of Hip-Hop Self 2023-12-10
2023 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Self 2023-11-03
2022 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Self 2022-11-19
You're Watching Video Music Box Self (archive footage) 2021-12-03
Biggie: I Got a Story to Tell Self - Hip-Hop Artist (archive footage) 2021-03-01
One World: Together at Home Self 2020-04-18
A Home for the Holidays: The 20th Anniversary Self - Host 2018-12-12
Q85: A Musical Celebration for Quincy Jones Self 2018-12-09
MVP: Most Valuable Performer 2018-01-25
Sinatra 100: An All-Star Grammy Concert Self 2015-12-06
Stevie Wonder: Songs in the Key of Life - An All-Star Grammy Salute Self 2015-02-26
The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles Self - Host 2014-02-09
Grudge Match Frankie Brite 2013-12-25
Mayweather Narrator 2013-04-27
Yo! The Story of ‘Yo! MTV Raps’ Self 2012-06-07
Whitney Houston - We Will Always Love You self 2012-07-01
DJ Cinema Presents: Masterpiece Theater Blend Dvd Self (archive footage) 2009-03-19
How Bruce Lee Changed the World Self 2009-05-17
The Deal Bobby Mason 2008-11-20
ShowBusiness: The Road to Broadway Self 2007-04-19
Last Holiday Sean Matthews 2006-01-13
Slow Burn Luther Pinks 2005-09-12
Edison Deed 2005-07-29
Mindhunters Gabe Jensen 2004-05-07
S.W.A.T. Deacon 'Deke' Kay 2003-08-08
Beef Self (archive footage) 2003-08-03
Deliver Us from Eva Ray Adams 2003-02-07
Hype Williams: The Videos Vol. 1 2002-01-01
Rollerball Marcus Ridley 2002-02-08
It's Black Entertainment Self (archive footage) 2002-02-08
Kingdom Come Ray Bud Slocumb 2001-04-11
Charlie's Angels Mr. Jones 2000-11-02
Deep Blue Sea Preacher 1999-07-28
Any Given Sunday Julian Washington 1999-12-22
Rapmania: The Roots of Rap 1999-10-31
In Too Deep Dwayne Gittens / God 1999-08-25
Caught Up Roger 1998-02-27
Halloween H20: 20 Years Later Ronald 'Ronny' Jones 1998-08-05
Woo Darryl 1998-05-08
B.A.P.S Himself 1997-03-28
Touch Self 1997-02-14
The Right to Remain Silent Charles Red Taylor 1996-01-07
The Show Self 1995-08-25
Out-of-Sync Jason St. Julian 1995-06-04
Toys Captain Patrick Zevo 1992-12-18
Future Of The Funk Self 1991-01-01
Simply Mad About the Mouse Self 1991-07-15
The Hard Way Billy 1991-03-08
Wildcats Rapper 1986-02-14
Big Fun in the Big Town Himself 1986-06-06
Krush Groove Himself 1985-10-25