LL Cool J Receives Hollywood Walk Of Fame Star One Week After His 48th Birthday
After over thirty years in the music industry as one of the pioneers of hip-hop, icon LL Cool J receives his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, just one week after his 48th birthday.
Joined at the ceremony by rap legend Queen Latifah; music moguls Sean "P Diddy" Combs and Russell Simmons, family friends; James Todd Smith, more commonly known in the music industry as Uncle L or Ladies Love Cool James, graciously accepted the 2,571st star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Thursday Jan. 21, according to Bossip.
According to BET, Smith joins the likes of legendary entertainers on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame like, Jennifer Hudson; Steve Harvey, Sean Combs, and Tupac Shakur.
Noted for being one of the major contributors to the birth of the recording label Def Jam; alongside Simmons and Rick Rubin, LL Cool J has contributed hit singles to the hip-hop community like "The Boomin System," "Rock The Bells," "Around The Way Girl" and "Mama Said Knock You Out." His more recent body of work has also contributed to his longevity in the music industry, and his ability to reach a widespread range of followers, both an older and younger audience, with hit songs like "Headsprung," "Hey Lover," and "Luv U Better."
Another one of his hit singles was the 1987 classic, "I Need Love," which according to LL, almost didn't happen because he and Rubin could not agree on the song, as reported by Variety. "Rick and I had, not exactly a falling out, but a total disagreement about that song," stated LL during in interview. "He was like, 'Man, if you're so confident about it, why don't you put it out first.'" The rapper explained how during that time, writing and performing "sensitive" songs was something that rappers just didn't do. "If you're not drinking Ol' English and screaming, what are you even doing," LL explained of how rappers perceived during the late '80s. "How dare you talk about some sensitive stuff?" But ultimately that song and several others topped the charts and are still labeled as classic hip-hop to this day.
Smith, who just celebrated his 48th birthday on Jan. 14, shared a memorable photo on Instagram with a message of gratitude to all of his fans.
"This Star ceremony is truly an honor,' wrote Smith on his Instagram page. "As an artist there is no greater feeling than to know your art has made an impact.... Now my name is immortalized on Hollywood blvd.. Thank you all. the best is yet to come!"