In 2017 hip hop became the popular music in the United States, has one of the longest Billboard-charting albums of all time in Eminem’s Curtain Call, has an archive in Harvard introduced by 9th Wonder, routinely tops the charts, has its own day in New York, and landed its first Songwriters Hall Of Famer in JAY-Z.
It has now obtained another first: a Kennedy Center honoree, in LL Cool J.
The rapper, née James Todd Smith, received the Honor this past Sunday (Dec. 3rd), alongside fellow legends Gloria Estefan, Lionel Richie, Norman Lear and Carmen de Lavallade. At 49, LL is also the Kennedy Center’s youngest honoree since Stevie Wonder, who was honored at the 22nd Kennedy Center Honors back in 1999.
The Kennedy Center Honors acknowledges the lifetime achievements of contributors to American culture. LL was honored with an introduction from Queen Latifah and a performance from Busta Rhymes and The Roots.
“An unforgettable evening… I will remember and cherish this honor for the rest of my life,” LL said on his Instagram page. “Thank you to the performers tonight. I am honored and humbled. I am forever grateful for this moment.”
The Kennedy Center Honors will air December 26th on CBS.
Speaking of LL, Boosie Badazz salutes the legendary emcee in his latest video, “I’m Bad.”