Veteran American hip-pop raper from Queens, New York, James Todd Smith, better known by his stage name LL Cool J, has been honoured with the Kennedy Center Honor, for his contributions as a performer throughout the years, who Kennedy Center officials describe as the youngest recipient ever to win America’s highest achievement for any performer at the Kennedy Center honours.
The 49-year-old rapper was honoured alongside singers Gloria Estefan and Lionel Richie, as well as TV producer Norman Lear and dancer Carmen de Lavallade, at the first Kennedy Center ceremony under U.S. President Donald Trump, which took place on Saturday, December 2, 2017.
Taking to Instagram, to celebrate the milestone, he wrote: “I believe that we are built to do anything we put our minds and proper actions to,” wrote LL. “You have all the tools inside you that are required for you to fulfill your GOD given purpose.”
He continued: “This one is for those who came before me and those who followed me. We were sent to this planet to love and inspire one another. Manifest our dreams and make them a reality. I hope you’re inspired by me because I’m absolutely Inspired by you. Mic check 1212 Let’s ride!!”
He says there were a lot of deserving rappers and performers from his generation but will not say that anybody deserves this over him
He said — quote — “I’m humble, but I’m not going to play pseudo-humble. I’m the one!”
President Donald Trump announced he wouldn’t be attending this year in the face of boycott threats by some of the honorees despite it’s a traditional and important but thanked the White House for avoiding a showdown that would have overshadowed the ceremony.