With “Rock the Bells Radio”, LL Cool J’s new SiriusXM channel, drivers can time travel as they jam their way to the late 70, 80s and 90s- the era of classic hip hop.
On Wednesday at 10 p.m. Eastern, LL Cool J and DJ Z-Trip will be hosting an invitation-only roller skating event in Los Angeles to help kick-off the first broadcast of “Rock the Bells Radio”, which airs on channel 43. The channel replaces Backspin, which focused on Old School hip hop.
LL Cool J, the two-time Grammy-winning rapper, will launch his new classic hip-hop SiriusXM channel called “Rock the Bells Radio” on March 28. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
The channel’s name originates from LL Cool J’s 1985 hit song, “Rock the Bells”.
The rapper and actor said he felt he needed to revamp the old-school hip hop.
“I felt like classic hip-hop needed some leadership,” he told the Associated Press. “It needed some organization. It needed somebody to step up and say, ‘Hey, this music is dope, people love it and want to hear it.’ But it has to be presented in a dope way and treated with the respect that it deserves.”
He also said that he wanted to pay homage to legendary classic hip hop artists who paved the way for current rappers.
“There are so many artists who are the foundation of this culture,” LL Cool J said. “But it seems like they have been marginalized and pushed to the side if they’re no longer on the pop charts. I felt like hip-hop has a story and a lot of founding fathers and mothers that the world should know. … People know Run-DMC and myself, but there were people before us.”
The “Lip Sync Battle” and “NCIS: Los Angeles” star said he wants “Rock the Bells Radio” to be more than just a place to listen to old-school hip hop people know and love, but for classic hip hop artists to showcase unheard songs and new tracks as well.
While listeners can expect to hear Ice Cube, Snoop Dogg, Run-DMC, Public Enemy, Outkast, and LL Cool J himself, he said that he will also feature some of his past rivals such as Kool Moe Dee and Canibus on his channel.
“I’m going to play even those records where they talk about me,” LL Cool J said. “I’m not going to deny none of the fans of my rivals’ music. This is not about stroking LL Cool J’s ego. It’s about the hip-hop culture. We’re going to dig into the crates for this.”