For more than 40 years, LL Cool J has been in the public eye in some way, shape, or form. He is truly the master of reinventing himself and with each new project, we learn just how talented he is. From rapper to television star, and everything in between, we want to get into what his next move will be. What is LL Cool J doing now? Whatever it is, it's bound to be good.
What is LL Cool J doing now?
After being nominated six times, LL Cool J finally made it into the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame, and rightfully so. Joining him in the 2021 class is Tina Turner, Carole King, The Go-Gos, Jay-Z, Todd Rundgren, and Foo Fighters. His performance, much his like career, was unmissable and electric. LL Cool J performed a medley of some of his best songs including "All I Have" with J.Lo, and "Rock the Bells" with recent restaurant owner Eminem.
And, who better to induct one of the best hip-hop artists of our time than another legend of the genre? Dr. Dre brought LL Cool J on stage with these words: "What does LL really stand for? Ladies love? Living large? Licking lips? I’m here because I think it stands for living legend.” Only a living legend like LL Cool J would get a standing ovation from Dave Grohl.
When asked by Variety about his love of hip-hop, LL Cool J had nothing but love: "It changed our lives. Me being a kid from Queens, it gave us an opportunity to express ourselves creatively and artistically and to really level up." He went on to say, "As a young Black kid in Queens it made me feel empowered. It was the first time I saw kids that looked like me saying something that sounded powerful because, to be honest, most of the time I saw them on the news was...in handcuffs."
Who inspires LL Cool J?
According to Variety, LL Cool J listed a small but mighty group of artists as people who influenced him musically. After waxing poetic about Jimi Hendrix, Aerosmith, Bob Dylan, AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, and Billy Squier, he said, "Bob Dylan, ‘Subterranean Homesick Blues,’ come on, man! The words and the lyrics and the stuff he does in that."
LL Cool J also made it clear that hip-hop and rock n' roll go together perfectly. There is zero animosity between the genres, he even referenced the infamous collaboration between Run DMC and Aerosmith for "Walk This Way." "We appreciate rock ‘n’ roll. We’re not against rock ‘n’ roll. We are not anti- rock ‘n’ roll at all. On the contrary,” LL Cool J said. “It’s all love.”
What has LL Cool J done outside of music?
LL Cool J is an insanely busy man. For the past 12 years, he's been starring on NCIS: Los Angeles as Special Agent Sam Hanna, a role that garnered him two NAACP Image Awards, as well as a Teen Choice Award. And while he's been in dozens of movies, no one can forget the cult classic Deep Blue Sea and LL Cool J's role as the ridiculously hilarious cook with the pet parrot.
In 2020, while production on NCIS: Los Angeles was shut down, LL Cool J started a weekly Instagram Live chat show called The Cool Down, in which he had conversations with real people. In a May 2020 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, he opened up about what the quarantine taught him. "Every day I try to be better than I was the day before," he said. He also "discovered ... a desire to reconnect with the people." We're grateful for the many ways we can connect with him, too.