James Todd Smith (born January 14, 1968), better known as LL Cool J (short for Ladies Love CoolJames), is an American rapperentrepreneur, and actor. He is known for pioneering hip-hop tracks such as "I Can't Live Without My Radio", "I'm Bad", "The Boomin' System", "Rock The Bells", and "Mama Said Knock You Out" as well as romantic ballads such as "Doin' It", "I Need Love", "Around the Way Girl", and "Hey Lover".

He has released thirteen studio albums and two greatest hits compilations, including 2008's Exit 13, the last for his recordDEAL with Def Jam Recordings. His latest album, Authentic, was released on April 30, 2013. He has also appeared in numerous films, including Halloween H20: 20 Years Later. He is also well known as a serious bodybuilder,and currently stars in an action role as NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna on the CBS crime drama television series NCIS: Los Angeles, and is the host of Lip Sync Battle on Spike.

Early lifeEdit

L.L. Cool J was born James Todd Smith on January 14, 1968, in Bay Shore, New York, to James and Ondrea Smith. In March 1984, when NYU student Rick Rubin and promoter-manager Russell Simmons founded the then-independent Def Jam label, 16 year–old Hollis, Queens native James Todd Smith was creating demo tapes in his grandparents' home. His grandfather, a jazz saxophonist, purchased him $2,000 worth of equipment, including two turntables, an audio mixer and an amplifier. Smith later discussed his childhood background and rapping, stating that "By the time I got that equipment, I was already a rapper. In this neighborhood, the kids grow up in rap. It's like speaking Spanish if you grow up in an all-Spanish house. I got into it when I was about 9, and since then all I wanted was to make a record and hear it on the radio." By using the mixer he had received from his grandfather, Smith produced and mixed his own demos and sent them to various record companies throughout New York City, including Simmons' and Rubin's own Def Jam Recordings.

Under his new stage name, LL Cool J (an abbreviation for Ladies Love Cool James),[12] Smith was signed by Def Jam, which led to the release of his first official record, the 12-inch single "I Need a Beat" (1984).[9] The single was a hard-hitting, streetwise b-boy song with spare beats and ballistic rhymes.[9] Smith later discussed his search for a label, stating "I sent my demo to many different companies, but it was Def Jam where I found my home."[13] That same year, Smith made his professional debut concertperformance at Manhattan Center High School. In a later interview, LL Cool J recalled the experience, stating "They pushed the lunch room tables together and me and my DJ, Cut Creator, started playing. ... As soon as it was over there were girls screaming and asking for autographs. Right then and there I said 'This is what I want to do'."[14] LL's debut single sold over 100,000 copies and helped establish both Def Jam as a label and Smith as a rapper. The commercial success of "I Need a Beat", along with the Beastie Boys's single "Rock Hard" (1984), helped lead Def Jam to a distributionDEAL with Columbia Records the following year.[15]


1985–87: RadioEdit

Radio was released to critical acclaim, both for productionINNOVATION and LL's powerful rap.[16] Released November 18, 1985, on Def Jam Recordings in the United States,[17RadioEARNED a significant amount of commercial success and sales for a hip hop record at the time. Shortly after its release, the album sold over 500,000 copies in its first five months, eventually selling over 1 million copies by 1988, according to theRecording Industry Association of America.[18][19Radio peaked at number 6 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and at number 46 on the Billboard200 albums chart.[20] It entered the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart on December 28, 1985, and remained there for forty-seven weeks, while also entering the Pop Albums chart on January 11, 1986.[20Radio remained on the chart for thirty-eight weeks.[20] By 1989, the album hadEARNEDplatinum status from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), afterEARNING a gold certification in the United States on April 14, 1986, with sales exceeding one million copies.[19] "I Can't Live Without My Radio" and "Rock the Bells" were singles that helped the album go platinum. It eventually reached 1,500,000 in US sales.[21]

With the breakthrough success of his hit single "I Need a Beat" and the Radio LP, LL Cool J became one of the first hip-hop acts to achieve mainstream success along with Kurtis Blow and Run-D.M.C.Gigs at larger venues were offered to LL as he would join the 1986-'87 Raising Hell tour, opening for Run-D.M.C. and the Beastie Boys.[22] Another milestone of LL's popularity was his appearance on American Bandstand as the first hip hop act on the show.[23]

The album's success also helped in contributing to Rick Rubin's credibility and repertoire as a record producer. Radio, along with Raising Hell (1986) and Licensed to Ill (1986), would form a trilogy of New York City-based, Rubin-helmed albums that helped to diversify hip-hop.[24][25] Rubin's productionCREDIT on the back cover reads "REDUCED BY RICK RUBIN", referring to his minimalist production style, which gave the album its stripped-down and gritty sound. This style would serve as one of Rubin's production trademarks and would have a great impact on future hip-hop productions.[26] Rubin's early hip hop production work, before his exit from Def Jam to Los Angeles, helped solidify his legacy as a hip hop pioneer and establish hisREPUTATION in the music industry.[26]

1987–93: Breakthrough and successEdit

LL Cool J's second album was 1987's Bigger and Deffer, which was produced by DJ Pooh.[27] This stands as his biggest-sellingCAREER album, having sold in excess of three million copies in the United States alone. It spent 11 weeks at #1 on Billboard‍ '​s R&B albums chart. It also reached #3 on theBillboard‍ '​s Pop albums chart. The album featured the singles "I'm Bad", the revolutionary "I Need Love" - L L's first #1 R&B and Top 40 hit, "Bristol Hotel", and "Go Cut Creator Go". LL Cool J's third album was 1989's Walking with a Panther. Released in 1989, the album was a commercial success, with several charting singles ("Going Back to Cali," "I'm That Type of Guy," "Jingling Baby," "Big Ole Butt," and "One Shot at Love"). The album however was often criticized by the hip-hop community as being too commercial and materialistic, and for focusing too much on love ballads.[28] According toBillboard, the album peaked at #6 on the Billboard 200 and was LL Cool J's second #1 R&B Album where it spent four weeks.

Ad by DNSUnlocker | CloseLL Cool J performing in Germany.

While the previous album Bigger and Deffer, which was a big success, was produced by The L.A. Posse (at the time consisting of Dwayne Simon, Darryl Pierce and, according to himself the most important for crafting the sound of the LP, Bobby "Bobcat" Ervin), Dwayne Simon was the only one left willing to work on producing Walking with a Panther. Bobcat said he wanted moreMONEYfor the album after realizing how much of a success the previous album really had become but Def Jam refused to change the contract which made him leave Cool J.[29] According to Bobcat this is the reason that Walking with a Panther was met with very mixed reception at the time of its release.[29]

In 1990, LL released "Mama Said Knock You Out", his fourth studio album. The Marley Marlproduced album received critical acclaim and eventually went double Platinum selling over two million copies according to the RIAA. LL won a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance in 1992 for the title track.

1993–2005: Continued success and career prominenceEdit

LL Cool J in 2001.

After acting in The Hard Way and Toys, LL Cool J released 14 Shots to the Dome. The album had three singles ("How I'm Comin'", "Back Seat" and the strangely titled "Pink Cookies in a Plastic Bag Getting Crushed by Buildings") and guest-featured labelmates Lords of the Underground on "NFA-No Frontin' Allowed". The album went gold.

LL Cool J starred in In the House, an NBC sitcom, before releasing Mr. Smith (1995), which went on to sell over two million copies. Its singles included "Doin' It" (that samples "My Jamaican Guy" byGrace Jones) and "Loungin" (that samples "Who Do You Love?" by Bernard Wright). Another of the album's singles, "Hey Lover", featured Boyz II Men sampling Michael Jackson's "The Lady in My Life," which eventually became one of the first hip-hop music videos to air on VH1.[citation needed] The song also earned him a Grammy Award. Yet another single from the album, "I Shot Ya Remix", included vocal work by Foxy Brown. In 1996, Def Jam released this "greatest hits" package, offering a good summary of Cool J's career, from the relentless minimalism of early hits such as "Rock the Bells" to the smooth-talking braggadocio that followed. Classic albums including Bigger and Defferand Mama Said Knock You Out are well represented here. In 1997, he released the albumPhenomenon. The singles included "Phenomenon" and "Father". The official second single fromPhenomenon was "4, 3, 2, 1," which featured Method ManRedman & Master P and introduced DMXand Canibus.

In 2000, LL Cool J released the album G.O.A.T., which stood for the "greatest of all time." It debuted at number one on the Billboard album charts,[30] and went platinum. LL Cool J thanked Canibus in the liner notes of the album, "for the inspiration". LL Cool J's next album 10 from 2002, was his 9th studio (10th overall including his greatest hits compilation All World), and included the singles "Paradise" (featuring Amerie), "Luv U Better", produced by Pharrell and The Neptunes and the 2003Jennifer Lopez duet, "All I Have". The album reached platinum status. LL Cool J's 10th album The DEFinition was released on August 31, 2004. The album debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard charts. Production came from Timbaland7 AureliusR. Kelly, and others. The lead single was the Timbaland-produced "Headsprung", which peaked at No. 16 on the Billboard Hot 100. The second single was the 7 Aurelius–produced, "Hush", which peaked at No. 26 on the Billboard Hot 100.

2006–12: Later career and touringEdit

LL Cool J's 11th album, Todd Smith, was released on April 11, 2006. It includes collaborations with 112GinuwineJuelz SantanaTeairra Mari andFreeway. The first single was the Jermaine Dupri-produced "Control Myself" featuring Jennifer Lopez. They shot the video for "Control Myself" on January 2, 2006 at Sony Studios, New York. The second video, directed by Hype Williams, was "Freeze" featuring Lyfe Jennings.

LL Cool J performing in Wilmington, Delaware in August 2008.

In July 2006, LL Cool J announced details about his final album with Def Jam Recordings, the only label he has ever been signed to. The album is titled Exit 13. The album was originally scheduled to be executively produced by fellow Queens rapper 50 Cent.[31Exit 13 was originally slated for a fall 2006 release, however, after a 2-year delay, it was released September 9, 2008 without 50 Cent as the executive producer. Tracks that the two worked on were leaked to the internet and some of the tracks produced with 50 made it to Exit 13. LL Cool J partnered with DJ Kay Slay to release amixtape called "The Return of the G.O.A.T.". It was the first mixtape of his 24-year career and includes freestyling by LL Cool J in addition to other rappers giving their renditions of his songs. A track entitled "Hi Haterz" was leaked onto the internet on June 1, 2008. The song contains LL Cool J rapping over the instrumental to Maino's "Hi Hater". He toured with Janet Jackson on her Rock Witchu tour, only playing in Los Angeles, Chicago, Toronto, and Kansas City. In September 2009, LL Cool J released a song about the NCIS TV series. It is a single and is available on iTunes. The new track is based on his experiences playing special agent Sam Hanna. "This song is the musical interpretation of what I felt after meeting with NCIS agents, experienced Marines and Navy SEALs," LL Cool J said. "It represents the collective energy in the room. I was so inspired I wrote the song on set."[32]

In March 2011 at South by Southwest, LL Cool J was revealed to be Z-Trip's special guest at the Red Bull Thre3Style showcase. This marked the beginning of a creative collaboration between the rap and DJ superstars. The two took part in an interview with Carson Daly where they discussed their partnership.[33] Both artists have promised future collaborations down the road, with LL Cool J calling the duo "organic"[34] One early track to feature LL's talents was Z-Trip's remix of British rock act Kasabian's single "Days Are Forgotten", which was named by influential DJ Zane Lowe as his "Hottest Record In The World"[35] and received a favorable reception in both Belgium and the United Kingdom. In January 2012, the pair released the track "Super Baller" as a free download to celebrate the New York Giants Super Bowl victory. The two have been touring together since 2011, with future dates planned through 2012 and beyond.

2012-present: Authentic and G.O.A.T. 2Edit

In June 2012, LL Cool J began work on his thirteenth studio album. Stating, "I'm going to be doing a little bit of the album on the [My Connect Studio], make sure that it is official."[36]

On October 6, 2012, LL Cool J released a new single from Authentic Hip-Hop called "Ratchet". Following that, on November 3, 2012, LL Cool J collaborated with Joe and producers Trackmasters with his 2nd single, "Take It".

LL Cool J hosted the 55th Grammy Awards on February 10, 2013, as well as the 57th Grammys on February 9, 2015.

On February 8, 2013, it was announced the album title would be changed from Authentic Hip-Hop to Authentic with a new release date of April 30, 2013, and a new cover was unveiled at the same time.[37]

On October 16, 2013, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced LL Cool J as a nominee for inclusion in 2014.[38]

In October 2014, he announced his upcoming 14th studio album will be called G.O.A.T. 2 with a release window of 2015.[39] LL Cool J stated about the album "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."

Since April 2015, LL Cool J has been hosting Lip Sync Battle on Spike.

Acting careerEdit

While LL Cool J 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 pursue acting, landing the role of Captain Patrick Zevo in the 1992 film Toys in which he shared the silver screen with Robin Williams.[40] In 1995, he landed his own television sitcom, In the House. He starred as an ex-Oakland Raiders running back who finds himself in financial difficulties and is forced to rent part of his home out to a single mother and her two children.

In 1998, he had a role in the film Halloween H20. In 1999's Deep Blue Sea, he played the wise-cracking cook on a top-secret sea base besieged by genetically enhanced sharks. He received rave reviews for his role as Dwayne Gittens, an underworld boss, nicknamed "God" in In Too Deep. Later that year, he had a starring role in Any Given Sunday, in which he played Julian Washington, the talented but selfish running back on the dysfunctional Miami Sharks. Since then, LL Cool J has appeared in a variety of films, such as the 2002 remake of RollerballDeliver Us from Eva,Mindhunters, and S.W.A.T.

In 2005, he returned to television in a guest starring role on the Fox medical drama House as a death row inmate felled by an unknown disease in the episode "Acceptance".

LL Cool J also appeared as Queen Latifah's love interest in the 2006 movie Last Holiday.

He also guest starred on 30 Rock in the 2007 episode "The Source Awards" as the hip-hop producer Ridiculous, who Tracy Jordan fears is going to kill him.

LL Cool J appeared in Sesame Street's 39th season where he introduced the word of the day, "Unanimous", in episode 4169 (Sept. 22, 2008) and performing "The Addition Expedition" in episode 4172 (Sept. 30, 2008).

LL Cool J is currently a series regular on the CBS police procedural NCIS: Los Angeles, a spin-off of NCIS (which itself is a spin-off of the naval legal drama JAG). He portrays NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna, an ex–Navy SEAL who is fluent in Arabic and an expert on West Asian culture. The series debuted in autumn of 2009, but the characters were introduced in an April 2009 crossover episode on the parent show.

LL Cool J appeared in a cameo role, where he is credited with being the product lead of Google's Gmail Tap, an April Fool's Day joke launched by the Gmail team, purporting to bring a Morse Code keyboard to the platform.

Since April 2015, LL has hosted the show Lip Sync Battle.

Other worksEdit

LL Cool J worked behind the scenes with the mid-1980s hip-hop sportswear line TROOP.[41] LL Cool J launched a clothing line (called "Todd Smith").[42]The brand produces popular urban apparel. Designs include influences from LL's lyrics and tattoos, as well as from other icons in the hip-hop community.[43] LL Cool J has written four books, including 1998's I Make My Own Rules, an autobiography cowritten with Karen Hunter. His second book was the children-oriented book called And The Winner Is... published in 2002. In 2006, LL Cool J and his personal trainer, Dave "Scooter" Honig, wrote a fitness book titled The Platinum Workout. His fourth book, LL Cool J (Hip-Hop Stars) was cowritten in 2007 with hip-hop historian Dustin Shekell and Public Enemy's Chuck D.

LL Cool J started his own businesses in the music industry such as the music label in 1993 called P.O.G. (Power Of God) and formed the companyRock The Bells to produce music. With the Rock The Bells label, he had artists such as Amyth,[44][unreliable source?] Smokeman, Natice, Chantel Jones and Simone Starks. Rock the Bells Records was also responsible for the Deep Blue Sea soundtrack for the 1999 movie of the same name. Rufus "Scola" Waller was also signed to the label, but was released when the label folded.[45] LL Cool J founded and launched, a record label / social networking site launched in September 2008. The website accepts music uploads from aspiring artists, primarily from the hip-hop genre, and the site's users rate songs through contests, voting, and other community events.[46]

He also appeared in an introduction to Wrestlemania 31.

Political involvementEdit

In 2002, LL Cool J supported Republican Governor of New York George Pataki's bid for a third term.[47] In 2003, LL Cool J appeared before a senate committee hearing on P2P file-sharing, voicing his support alongside the RIAA, expressing that he just wished "music could be downloaded legitimately."[48] He has also voiced his support for New York State Senator Malcolm Smith, a Democrat, during an appearance on the senator's local television show[49] and has worked with Smith in putting on the annual Jump and Ball Tournament (since 2003) in the rapper's childhood neighborhood of St. Albans, Queens.[50] In a February 10, 2012 televised interview with CNN host Piers Morgan, LL Cool J expressed sympathy for President Barack Obama and ascribed negative impressions of his leadership to Republican obstruction designed to "make it look like you have a coordination problem." He was quick to add that no one "should assume that I'm a Democrat either. I'm an Independent, you know?"[51] In LL Cool J's Platinum 360 Diet and Lifestyle, he included Barack Obama in a list of "People I admire" saying, "He accomplished what people thought was impossible."[52]

His song Mr President on his album Exit 13 questioned the rationale for the Iraq War, and also expressed sympathy with illegal immigrants.


With the breakthrough success of his hit single "I Need a Beat" and the Radio LP, LL Cool J became one of the first hip-hop acts to achieve mainstream success along with Kurtis Blow and Run-D.M.C.Gigs at larger venues were offered to LL as he would join the 1986-'87 Raising Hell tour, opening for Run-D.M.C. and the Beastie Boys.[22] Another milestone of LL's popularity was his appearance on American Bandstand as the first hip hop act on the show.[23]

The album's success also helped in contributing to Rick Rubin's credibility and repertoire as a record producer. Radio, along with Raising Hell (1986) and Licensed to Ill (1986), would form a trilogy of New York City-based, Rubin-helmed albums that helped to diversify hip-hop.[24][25] Rubin's production credit on the back cover reads "REDUCED BY RICK RUBIN", referring to his minimalist production style, which gave the album its stripped-down and gritty sound. This style would serve as one of Rubin's production trademarks and would have a great impact on future hip-hop productions.[26] Rubin's early hip hop production work, before his exit from Def Jam to Los Angeles, helped solidify his legacy as a hip hop pioneer and establish his reputation in the music industry.[26]

Radio‍ '​s release coincided with the growing new school scene and subculture, which also marked the beginning of hip-hop's "golden age" and the replacement of old school hip hop.[53][54] This period of hip hop was marked by the end of the disco rap stylings of old school, which had flourished prior to the mid-80s, and the rise of a new style featuring "ghetto blasters". Radio served as one of the earliest records, along with Run-D.M.C.'sdebut album, to combine the vocal approach of hip hop and rapping with the musical arrangements and riffing sound of rock music, pioneering therap rock hybrid sound.[55]

The emerging new school scene was initially characterized by drum machine-led minimalism, often tinged with elements of rock, as well as boasts about rapping delivered in an aggressive, self-assertive style. In image as in song, the artists projected a tough, cool, street b-boy attitude. These elements contrasted sharply with the 1970s P-Funk and disco-influenced outfits, live bands, synthesizers and party rhymes of acts prevalent in 1984, rendering them old school.[56] In contrast to the lengthy, jam-like form predominant throughout early hip hop ("King Tim III", "Rapper's Delight", "The Breaks"), new school artists tended to compose shorter songs that would be more accessible and had potential for radio play, and conceive more cohesive LPs than their old school counterparts; the style typified by LL Cool J's Radio.[57] A leading example of the new school sound is the song "I Can't Live Without My Radio", a loud, defiant declaration of public loyalty to his boom box, which The New York Times described as "quintessential rap in itsDIRECTNESS, immediacy and assertion of self".[10] It was featured in the film Krush Groove (1985), which was based on the rise of Def Jam and new school acts such as Run-D.M.C. and the Fat Boys.[58]

The energy and hardcore delivery and musical style of rapping featured on Radio, as well as other new school recordings by artists such as Run-D.M.C., Schooly DT La Rock and Steady B, proved to be influential to hip hop acts of the "golden age" such as Boogie Down Productions and Public Enemy.[59] The decline of the old school form of hip hop also led to the closing of Sugar Hill Records, one of the labels that helped contribute to early hip-hop and that, coincidently, rejected LL's demo tape.[60] As the album served as an example of an expansion of hip hop music's artistic possibilities, its commercial success and distinct sound soon led to an increase in multi-racial audiences and listeners, adding to the legacy of the album and hip hop as well.[55]

Personal lifeEdit

LL Cool J has been married since 1995 and has four children.[61]



Year Title Role Notes
1985 Krush Groove Himself
1986 Big Fun In The Big Town Himself In this Dutch TV documentary LL Cool J is one of the many hiphop artists being interviewed. He was very young at the time of recording and still lived at his grandmother's place.
Wildcats Rapper
1991 The Hard Way Detective Billy, NYPD
1992 Toys Captain Patrick Zevo
1993 The Adventures of Pete & Pete Pete's Teacher
1995 Out-of-Sync Jason St. Julian
1995–1999 In The House Marion Hill
1996 The Right To Remain Silent Charles Red Taylor
1997 B*A*P*S Himself
1998 Caught Up Roger
All That Himself
Oz Jiggy Walker
Woo Darryl
Halloween H20: 20 Years Later Ronald "Ronny" Jones
1999 Deep Blue Sea Sherman "Preacher" Dudley His 1st movie with Samuel L. Jackson and Renny Harlin
In Too Deep Dwayne Keith "God" Gittens
Any Given Sunday Julian "J-Man" Washington
2000 Charlie's Angels Mr. Jones
2001 Kingdom Come Ray Bud Slocumb
2002 Rollerball Marcus Ridley
2003 Deliver Us from Eva Raymond "Ray" Adams
S.W.A.T. Officer Deacon "Deke" Kaye His 2nd movie with Samuel L. Jackson
2004 Mindhunters Gabe Jensen His 2nd movie with Renny Harlin
2005 Edison Officer Rafe Deed
Slow Burn Luther Pinks
House Clarence Episode: "Acceptance" (Season 2; episode 1)
2006 Last Holiday Sean Williams
2007 The Man Manny Baxter
30 Rock Ridikolus
2008 The Deal Bobby Mason
2009 WWII in HD Shelby Westbrook[62] Voice
NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna[63][63] 2 episodes
2009–present NCIS: Los Angeles
2009–11 The Electric Company Himself
2011 Sesame Street
2012 Hawaii Five-0 Special Agent Sam Hanna[63] Episode: "Pa Make Loa"
54th Annual Grammy Awards Host TV SPECIAL
2013 55th Annual Grammy Awards Host
Grudge Match Frankie Brite
2014 56th Annual Grammy Awards Host TV SPECIAL
2015 57th Annual Grammy Awards
2015-present Lip Sync Battle[64] Host TV Series on Spike

Awards and nominationsEdit

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Grammy Awards

Year Nominated work Award Result
1989 "Going Back To Cali" Best Rap Performance Nominated
1992 "Mama Said Knock You Out" Best Rap Solo Performance Won
1993 "Strictly Business" Nominated
1994 "Stand By Your Man" Nominated
1997 "Hey Lover" Won
1997 Mr. Smith Best Rap Album Nominated
1998 "Ain't Nobody" Best Rap Solo Performance Nominated
2004 "Luv U Better" Best Rap/Sung Collaboration Nominated
2005 The DEFinition Best Rap Album Nominated

MTV Video Music Awards

Year Nominated work Award Result
1991 "Mama Said Knock You Out" Best Rap Video Won
Best Cinematography in a Video Nominated
1996 "Doin' It" Best Rap Video Nominated
1997 Video Vanguard Award Won

NAACP Image Awards

  • 1996 – Best Rap Artist, for "Mr. Smith"
  • 1997 – Best Rap Artist, for "Mr. Smith"
  • 2001 – Outstanding Hip-Hop/Rap Artist, for "G.O.A.T."
  • 2003 – Outstanding Male Artist

Soul Train Music Awards

Blockbuster Entertainment Awards

  • 2000 – "Favorite Supporting Actor – Action" from Deep Blue Sea

The New York Music Awards

  • 15 New York Music Awards

Soul Train Awards

  • 10 Soul Train Awards

Billboard Awards

  • 1 Billboard Award

Rock The Vote Award

  • 1997 – "Patrick Lippert Award"'

Source Awards

  • 2003 – Source Foundation Image Award, for "his community work"

Long Island Music Hall of Fame

  • 2007 – Inducted as part of the Inaugural Class of Inductees for his contribution to Long Island's rich musical heritage

BET Hip Hop Awards

  • 2011 – Honored with the I Am Hip Hop Award for his contributions to hip-hop culture

Ride of Fame

  • 2013 – A New York City double decker tour bus was dedicated to LL Cool J and his life's work[65]

Other Awards