Nah, Bean: LL Cool J Remembers When Kobe Bryant Played Him His Gangsta Rap Album

While the outpouring for Kobe Bryant is more than justified the all-star athlete wasn’t a legend in two fields. One MC looks back at when he tried his hand at rapping.

As spotted on Billboard, LL Cool J shared a heartwarming story about the late great Los Angeles Laker. Back in 1999 record executive Steve Stoute signed the player to a recording contract. Even though his teammate Shaquille O’Neal proved to the world that some ballers can rhyme too, Mamba’s efforts weren’t as seamless. The G.O.A.T. detailed the interaction in hilarious fashion.

“He played me this album, this gangsta rap album, and I was like, ‘Kobe.’ I said, ‘Come on, dog. That’s not what you need to be doing,’” the “Rock The Bells” rapper laughed as he thought back. “He had a gangsta rap album. He played me that album, we’re sitting in a parking lot. I was confused. I was sitting there, like, ‘What are we doing? You got endorsements, what are you doing?’ It had to be the funniest moment of my life, listening to him do gangsta rap.”

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A month ago I was sitting in a restaurant talking about how great you were. Now although you’re physically gone, your spirit lives on. You meant so much to so many people worldwide. We watched you grow from boy to family man. We watched you overcome adversity. We watched you tap in to your GOD given talents and potential. You inspired us to dig deeper and strive to go higher. You showed us metaphorically what was possible. And although I always move in the spirit of humility; there aren’t many men who could inspire me to write these words. You truly represented greatness to me. Although I’m sure you would have preferred that you all lived. I’m also sure you would have preferred to be there with your child at the end of her life; rather than to have her transition alone. I believe that deep in my heart. Real men and women understand that. So I salute you my brother. And I pray that you, your daughter, and the other victims reside peacefully in the next dimension. God bless you 8/24 !!! You’re forever great!!! Vanessa, you and your girls stay prayerful and as strong as you can. May God bless you 🙏🏾

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Cool James also recalled when #8 actually performed his first single at the 2000 NBA All-Star Game. That wasn’t pretty either. “We’re not gonna pretend like we wasn’t laughing,” LL Cool J said in regards to the 2000 live performance. “The world was laughing. That was not… but, you know, he took a shot. He took a shot.”

You can watch the ill-fated live set below.

Photo: Guillermo Proano/


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