An already grandiose bill of performers for this year’s 55th annual Grammy Awards has gotten that much more grander. According to a recent report from MTV News, Grammy host LL Cool J will now grace the stage for a historical performance with Chuck D of Public Enemy, Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker, DJ Z-Trip and Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello.
Without giving any spoilers about Sunday’s performance, Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow said the idea sprung out of the Academy’s long relationship with Cool J.
“LL is part of our family now,” said Portnow, who continued, “He’s not a hired gun and last year after we did the nominations show we said, ‘let’s do [something] this year’ and he was up for it.”
Considering LL Cool J’s lineage in Hip-Hop as a pioneer and elder statesmen, Portnow explained “He represents so much history with his work in Hip-Hop… to this day he’s in it, he’s respected for it and we thought, ‘gee, it’s right under our noses, let’s do something with LL and have a lot of fun with that.'”
Portnow clarified, “[The performance is] not so much a tribute to [LL’s] music, so much as a celebration of the kind of music he’s been known for and others that have followed.”
Sources say that the performance will be a mash-up of Hip-Hop, Rock and EDM.
MTV also spoke with Chuck D for his take on the performance. Hear the legend speak candidly in footage from the sit down below.
The 55th Annual Grammy awards air live on the CBS Television Network Sunday, February 10, from 8–11:30 p.m EST. Other performers include Justin Timberlake, Rihanna, Frank Ocean, Mumford & Sons, The Black Keys, fun., Jack White and more.
Photo: Tony Dejak