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February 10th, 2012
03:53 PM ET

LL Cool J: "America is still the country of that opportunity"

Looking ahead to this weekend's GRAMMY's, hip-hop star and multiple award winner LL Cool J sat down with Piers Morgan for an entertaining  and insightful interview.  This year's host of the award show spoke not only about music, but also his views on the future of the country:  "I think in order to keep America great, we have to keep America creative," he told Piers Morgan. "I don't think that anything great in this nation has ever happened without creation, whether it's the Wright Brothers or it's what Bill Gates has done, or, rest in peace, what Steve Jobs did."

Using his own creativity, LL Cool J captured the 1992 GRAMMY FOR "Mama Said Knock You Out."  More than 20 years later, he's focused on maintaining balance and eliminating barriers amongst the classes:

"You have one group of people that are wearing all white and playing cricket," he explains.  "Then you have another crew that's playing it on the sidewalk, you know they're play Scully on the sidewalk – Google that –  you know, and, you know, they can't relate to each other, but there is a middle ground."

Tune in to "Piers Morgan Tonight" at 9pm ET/PT as the music legend talks about his inspiration growing up, and gives Piers advice on women.

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soundoff (38 Responses)
  1. Jackson

    LL need to change his name back to the birth name. You comment about the President wasn' clear and that statement you are not a democrat, you're independent what was the purpose

    February 10, 2012 at 9:31 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • MaryAnn Herrmann

      That was a grea interview.,,,,,,never heard of saw he guy perform, bu I liked everything he had to say.

      February 11, 2012 at 12:43 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • ShaQ

      It is hard to respond on questions about our current presidental situation.

      February 13, 2012 at 2:31 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Tony Kline

    I truly believe in what LL is talking about when he talks about changing your future. I'm from Appalachia but I, and I mean I, chose not to sit back and wait for someone else to pick me up, unlike some of my friends, family and neighbors. Been a travel RN for many years. And a rock 'n roll drummer to the end. Thanks LL. You have and still impress me!! Tony

    February 10, 2012 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Marie C

      Tony, did you hear him mention Appalachia? Wish they had provided the entire transcript. This was a great interview.

      February 11, 2012 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. LisaRomeo

    Did anyone catch the saying by LLCoolJ's grandmother? Sounded like a lot of truth and worthy of remembering and teaching my own kids.

    February 10, 2012 at 9:45 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • JC Carter

      Also interested in his Grandmother's poem. Link anyone?

      February 10, 2012 at 9:51 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Dave B

    a great quote from his Grandmother about a task done: “if a task is once begun, never leave it til it’s done, be thy labor great or small, do it well or not at all”

    February 10, 2012 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • JC Carter

      Thanks Dave B -Do you know who's the author of the quote?

      February 11, 2012 at 12:01 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • MaryAnn

      Thank-you for providing that quote from his was great as well his interview with Piers which I was ready to switc channels when came on because I never heard of him before.....just don't listen to that kind of music.

      February 12, 2012 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse | Reply
      • Yanti

        You didn't answer the aitnspam question correctly, your comment was not saved. Press "Back" and answer the question better.Just to be sure that your message won't be lost – copy it now to the clipboard. 搞得我很紧张来着.. 特地来留言测试一下下....果然..是啥子插件啊?压根都木有问题出来

        April 2, 2012 at 4:01 am | Report abuse |
  5. Dave B

    I wish they would put the full interview up somewhere on the CNN site

    February 10, 2012 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Marie C

      Me too! Let me know if you find any info about the full-length version

      February 11, 2012 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Emily

    LL Cool J is a great role model for young people. I love his balanced view about our societal woes and how anyone can escape the cycle of poverty with the right determination and will. I hope he speaks to young people; I know they will be inspired by his personal story and advice on changing your life for the better.

    February 11, 2012 at 12:27 am | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Rochelle

    What did LL say on love and marriage? So much wisdom, so current. I really enjoyed his interview.

    February 11, 2012 at 12:39 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Yovany

      I'm really eeticxd to get your wonderful info and am looking forward to Spring and planting. We live in Lehi on the West side of the freeway just South of Thanksgiving Point. Are we on the same schedule as Pleasant Grove?? Thanks so much.

      April 4, 2012 at 10:30 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Ruth

    LL Cool J is Hot! He touched on thoughts expressed by Charles Murray in his new book, Coming Apart. Maybe Piers should schedule Mr. Murray for a future program. Also, if we want Apple to bring manufacturing back to America, it's simple! We should stop buying Apple products until they do.

    February 11, 2012 at 5:33 am | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Cathy

    Wow! That was a very inspiring interview without any ulterior motives he spoke purely from the heart...don't see much of that these days.

    It was exactly what I needed at this time, just stepped off into my life's passion as a counselor... Opened as a non-profit organization to all genres of counseling with a concentration in "alcohol and drug" addictions... Having lost my brother at age 41 to drug addiction I have devoted my life to combating this epidemic...
    I needed to hear this message in that it encouraged me to keep moving forward although, as you know, most addicts have exhausted their resources and I can't turn them away because they can't pay for my services...
    You have empowered me, and I will keep moving forward!

    Thanks LL!
    Cathy & Associates Counseling Center

    February 11, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Marie C.

      I AGREE! Your comments remind me that he wasn't "pitching" anything. Quite inspiring!!!!

      February 11, 2012 at 6:09 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Louise

    I have always admired LL Cool J. He had some good responses during the interview. I only wish that he had not been cut-off in trying to finish his comments by Piers' rapid-fire questioning. I have noticed this style used by Piers during several interviews. It is quite annoying!

    February 11, 2012 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Jennifer

    Loved this interview – Loved "LL" for 20 years and just saw a doc in which his family was featured – what a great man indeed!! Wow....he is very wise, talented, down to Earth. I too would love to see the interview again in full – if anyone has its source, pls email me. I was extremely impressed – can't wait to see him at the Grammys #RIP WhineyHouston

    February 12, 2012 at 8:57 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Jacqueline

    I AGREE with "LL" . We need to Support our Local Schools Art and Music Departments. Creativity will be many of our future opportunities. Airport Area Kiwanis Club will Host our First Annual Art and Music Talent Showcase at Banneker High School in College Park, GA. As a Community we need to show our Children that Dreams can come True. They need to become believers. Become Producer Level Sponsor to Help Support Art and Music Departments in South Fulton Georgia.
    Please go to: or

    Thanks in Advance

    February 12, 2012 at 9:45 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Sherry

    What was the Einstein quote that LL used during the interview?

    February 12, 2012 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  14. whodathunkit

    Wow! Thank you Piers for introducing me to L.L. Cool J. As a "White Bread Girl" teaching middle school students in America's heartland, I would have never thought I could learn something so profound and applicable from the likes of L L Cool J. I first resisted the temptation to change the channel when I saw how skillfully he avoided your attempts to "Dis" our President. Once he had my attention, I stayed tuned to listen to the rest of the intelligent, one-sided (his side, of course) conversation through the remainder of the interview. I think I'll rewrite my social studies lesson plans for next week to include this interview and the fact that you can find discerning, apropos commentary from the least likely sources, while simultaneously be disillusioned by the overtly biased opinions of people you previously thought had something insightful to say. Go back to the UK you TWIT!

    February 13, 2012 at 3:28 am | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Anthony

    Here is the Chinese Proverb that LL Cool J's Grandmother engrained in him as a young boy - "If a task has once begun. Never leave it till it's done. Be the labor great or small. Do it well or not at all."

    February 13, 2012 at 11:05 am | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Katie

    Please send me the quote , i missed some ... Thanks .. Loved the story ...

    February 17, 2012 at 2:53 am | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Anisza

    hahaha..i thought i am the only one .u also mr khuaril????i gave away 2 books from my twilight collection because of different covers (due to different publishers too) and not the same height i just bought the box set and i donated a few of my roald dahl collection because i bought the whole box set if i may .i would like to have the royalty .i am quite mad and love to dig on british royalty. i have a few bio; andrew morton's diana, paul barrel's diana and utterly enjoy to read their life ..

    March 3, 2012 at 4:29 am | Report abuse | Reply
  18. agen ibcbet

    Respect to author , some good entropy. "When you cease to dream you cease to live." by Malcolm Stevenson Forbes.

    April 24, 2012 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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    August 27, 2012 at 7:14 am | Report abuse | Reply
  21. jsnmllr

    Sadly some of the best parts of this interview are not in this clip. It still amazes me how a reporting agency, in this day and age, can continue to report only the parts of a story that empower a certain view point rather than report on the complete body of work and let the viewer make up their own mind.

    May 28, 2013 at 11:14 am | Report abuse | Reply

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