Rap icon LL Cool J to perform kickoff show at B.C. Lions’ home opener

Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

The B.C. Lions have booked two-time Grammy award-winning rapper LL Cool J to perform a pre-game concert ahead of their June 17 home opener against the Edmonton Elks.

LL Cool J, whose given name is James Todd Smith, broke into the music scene in the 1980s, becoming one of the first hip-hop artists to gain mainstream commercial success. He amassed ten consecutive platinum-plus selling records, becoming a household name for songs like “Going Back to Cali,” “Mama Said Knock You Out,” and “Hey Lover”.

In 2017, LL Cool J became the first rapper to receive the Kennedy Center Honours. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2021.

In recent years, the performer has become known for his acting roles. He co-starred in the iconic football movie Any Given Sunday, as well as the long-running television series NCIS: Los Angeles.

This is the second year in a row that the Lions will open their home schedule with a major musical performance. In 2022, a crowd of 34,082 was on hand to watch a pre-game concert by OneRepublic.

LL Cool J is scheduled to take the stage at 3:00 p.m. local time, with kickoff set for 4:00 p.m.