Wednesday, May 10, 2006

"I Need Love," LL Cool J (9/26/87)
...which astute readers of this blog, and/or general music freaks will know as the very first hip-hop record to make it to the top of the R&B chart. Akin to the way many say the first black U.S. president will have to be a conservative, the first hip-hop single to be an R&B #1 was a ballad, a love song, a sensitive treatise from not-a-boy-not-yet-a-man Todd Smith, a/k/a LL Cool J. It was certainly a change-up from the def Def Jammer, compared to the likes of "Rock the Bells" and "Radio," but it signalled that perhaps his career would be unlike so many of his kin; he knew very early on how to appeal to the ladeez. He still does, and has learned to make better records along such lines (i.e. 2002's plush "Luv U Better"), but this wasn't so bad for starters, if a bit it-just-sits-there. B

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