LL Cool J: Tribute to Himself
Ladies Love What?
By Peter Bell, Guest Reporter
ouse of Blues. LL Cool J. Must be kickin', right? Right. Kickin' but chaotic. Rockin' but repetitive. Sexy but skanky.
LL sure satisfied himself and got the audience breathing hard, but he failed to build to a climax. After the show, his many female fans had a faintly longing look, instead of the flushed glow you'd expect after a truly successful jam session with the best body in rap.
But let's start with the foreplay.
The evening kicked off with a group called Little-T and One Track Mike. They delivered a bizarre fusion of gangsta rap and bluegrass. Yes, bluegrass. Sometimes it worked, mostly it didn't. The lead rapper was truly talented, with an incredibly fast, right-on-time delivery. Plus he was a nice guy. After his set, he chatted with me and the X-girls (more on them later). Still, LL needs to drop the bluegrass band and learn how to get funk-kay!
Next up was The NAAM Brigade. This ensemble group got the party started, over a kickin' bass line that rocked your bones and knocked you back on your heels. I'd like to report further on their musical talent, but was otherwise occupied. The three hotties I chatted up between sets had disappeared for a few minutes, and returned as the X-girls. Their extensive full-body contact with me and each other prevented this correspondent from fully reporting on the finer points of The NAAM Brigade's delivery. All I can say is ... butts were shakin'.
But we got plenty of recovery time, because it was almost two hours later when LL finally deigned to appear. The X-girls drifted off, but I found another hottie to help me pass the time. She had just about the most perfect pair of ... anyway, all I will say is that sexy male performers equals hot females in the audience! But, once LL appeared, hotties and everyone else quickly became laser-focused on the star of the show.
And he delivered, fast and furious, for 10 minutes straight. Thrummin' bass, flexin' muscles, thrustin' hips, and a fast, fast tongue. Audience goin' crazy, girls wide-eyed, squealing, and flushed, guys rockin' along with the master. No complete songs, just verses here and there from his hits, with a call-and-response sequence with the audience between each one.
What a start! But then a strange thing happened. He repeated exactly the same delivery for the next ten minutes. And the next. And the next. Still no complete songs. Still the same bass line. Still the same posin', flexin', and thrustin'. By the 30th repetition of the same call and response, the audience was noticeably less enthusiastic. Plus, he couldn't keep up the pace verbally, lagging behind the beat and forgetting his lines several times.
But LL had a plan! He picked 15 girls out of the audience to come up on stage ... one hottie and 14 butt-uglies! And with mini-skirts riding up as they were hoisted on-stage, I mean butt-ugly quite literally! This motley crew spent one minute rubbing LL's body, then five minutes randomly milling about as LL randomly roamed the stage, spouting random lines. I almost wished for a return to bluegrass-gansta rap. Almost.
But LL still had a chance to redeem himself. For his encore, he called for a robe and a pair of shades. The audience, still hoping to hear an actual complete song, was yelling for "Goin' Back to Cali" ... and LL launched into ... his new single ... which sucked.
So, Ladies Love Cool James started fast, couldn't keep up the pace, and failed to deliver the big payoff at the end. After barely an hour-long performance, the audience was left looking around, saying, "That was all? What about me?" Everyone expected more from a veteran performer. But even the best lovers have those nights where they are just going through the motions, and tonight was one of those nights for LL Cool J at the House of Blues.
Wanna show Cool James how much you love him? Visit the man's official site and leave him messages. Be careful. Restraining orders are very bad things.