This year marks the 50th anniversary of hip-hop, the influential music and cultural movement that originated in the Bronx in 1973 and went on to revolutionize the global music scene.
As the milestone is celebrated worldwide, hip-hop legend LL COOL J is at the forefront, hosting the “Rock the Bells” festival in his hometown of Queens, New York, and preparing for his first arena tour in 30 years.
The festival will also feature a lineup of iconic hip-hop artists, including Queen Latifah, Run DMC, Ludacris, Redman, Method Man, De La Soul and more.
LL COOL J told “CBS Mornings” that hip-hop to him represents empowerment.
“It was about I am somebody that kind of message, it was empowering,” he said.
In addition to the music, LL COOL J said he is passionate about preserving history and educating younger generations about the roots of hip-hop. His platform, Rock the Bells, is dedicated to celebrating and elevating hip-hop culture through content, commerce, and live experiences.
“I’m just glad that people are embracing hip hop culture the way they are and I’m happy that you know we were part of leading that charge and we leading it,” he said.
Meanwhile, LL COOL J is gearing up for his first arena tour in 30 years, with fans eagerly anticipating both his new music and his timeless classics. The F.O.R.C.E Live tour promises to be a non-stop party, with artists performing together in a unique and electrifying mash-up.
“I’m gonna dig in the crates and do the classics,” he said.
The Rock the Bells festival is scheduled for Aug. 5, in Queens, New York, while The F.O.R.C.E. Live tour begins on Aug. 11 in Baltimore.