Monday, January 14, 2013
LL Cool J
James Todd Smith (born January 14, 1968), better known as LL Cool J, for Ladies Love Cool James), is an American rapper, entrepreneur, and actor from Bay Shore, New York. He is known for romantic ballads such as "I Need Love", "Around the Way Girl" and "Hey Lover" as well as pioneering hip-hop such as "I Can't Live Without My Radio", "I'm Bad", "The Boomin' System", and "Mama Said Knock You Out". He has released thirteen studio albums and two greatest hits compilations, including 2008's Exit 13, the last for his record deal with Def Jam Recordings, and currently has a new studio album in the works. He has also appeared in numerous films, including Halloween H20: 20 Twenty Years Later, and currently stars as NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna on the CBS crime drama television series NCIS: Los Angeles.
LL Cool J was born in Bay Shore, New York, the son of Ondrea and James Smith. He married Simone I. Johnson, on August 9, 1995 at his home in Long Island, New York. The couple have four children: son Najee Laurent Todd Eugene Smith and daughters Italia Anita Maria Smith, Samaria Leah Wisdom Smith and Nina Simone Smith. In 2002, he threw his support behind sitting Republican Governor of New York George Pataki's bid for a third term. 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." 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 and has worked with Smith in putting on the annual Jump and Ball Tournament (since 2003) in the rapper's childhood neighborhood of St. Alban's, Queens. 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?" LL Cool J stopped an intruder allegedly attempting to burglarize his house on August 22, 2012, inflicting serious injury to the suspect.