ATLANTA — LL Cool J, a towering pillar of hip-hop music and culture who has cranked out classic club cuts and anthems since the late 1980s, received a special award at the 5th annual Urban One Honors.
The elegant soiree, which was hosted by singer Tank, will air on TV One and CLEO TV on Jan. 16, 2023, which coincides with the Martin Luther King Jr. National Holiday.
The Urban One Honors will spotlight the greatest contributors to the culture and pay homage to those who elevated a myriad of genres including movies, media, music, arts, politics, community and education.
In addition to James Todd Smith, the New York native who cranked out a blizzard of indelible classics like “I’m Bad,” “I Need Love,” “Around the Way,” “Mama Said Knock You Out,” “Doing It,” “Rock the Bells,” and many others, the Urban One Honors will also express gratitude to Bobby Brown. He has scores of his own seminal songs that provided the soundtrack for an entire generation, both during and after his time with New Edition. He will receive the Phoenix Honor Award.
David and Pamela Mann, the prolific music and movie stars, were on hand to get their well-deserved Inspirational Impact Award.
California Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who is often affectionately called “Auntie Maxine,” flew in from her Los Angeles headquarters to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award and add it to her large trophy case.
Pharell Williams received the Music Innovation Honor that was presented by fellow music maker Pusha T.
Former Destiny Child’s LeToya Luckett, who interviewed talent one-on-one at the Soul Train Awards 2023 in Las Vegas, served in the same capacity at the Urban One Honors in Atlanta.
Some of the other stars and dignitaries in attendance on the blue carpet included ex-“Real Housewives of Atlanta” OG NeNe Leakes and her boyfriend Nyonisela Sioh, “Love and Hip Hop” stalwart Yandy Smith and Dr. Contessa and Dr. Scott Metcalfe of “Married to Medicine.”