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LL Cool J wants his new platform to be your one-stop resource for all things classic hip-hop

Rap legend LL Cool J has expanded his SiriusXM channel Rock the Bells into a new platform that dives even deeper into classic hip-hop.

LL Cool J wants his new platform to be your one-stop resource for all things classic hip-hop
[Photo: courtesy of Peter Yang]
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In 2018, LL Cool J launched Rock the Bells Radio, a SiriusXM channel dedicated to all things classic hip-hop, from curated retrospectives to in-depth interviews. LL Cool J’s mission wasn’t only to spin throwback jams; he wanted to contextualize the early era of hip-hop that paved the way to the genre becoming the mainstream force it is today.

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Now he’s expanded his mission with the Rock the Bells platform, a website featuring articles, video content, and more—all with the same purpose of spotlighting and dissecting classic hip-hop.

“This wasn’t just a pure money play for me. It was more about getting it right and doing something from the heart, and solving a real problem that I think exists,” LL Cool J says. “And that problem is the representation of classic and timeless hip-hop in the mainstream and in the world.”

The site launched in June with help from investors including Mark Cuban; newly appointed Netflix CMO Bozoma Saint John; and Egon Durban, co-CEO of private equity firm Silver Lake. Rock the Bells has also formed what it’s calling a hip-hop alliance, i.e. giving ownership stakes in the company to many of the architects of hip-hop, including Big Daddy Kane, Run-DMC, Salt-N-Pepa, and more.

“[Rock the Bells] is a work in progress. We are going to continue to iterate. We’re going to continue to improve it. But I think that it’s something that’s needed,” LL Cool J says. “History is written by the winners. So I wanted to get that narrative right for these artists, and for the culture in general.”

About the author

KC covers entertainment and pop culture for Fast Company. Previously, KC was part of the Emmy Award-winning team at "Good Morning America," where he was the social media producer.

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