Is LL Cool J Married With Family? What Are His Age and Net Worth?

Age/Date of Birth:
January 14, 1968 (55 years old)
6 ft 1½ in or 187 cm
African American
Net Worth:$120 million
Wife or Girlfriend:Simone Smith
Parents: James Louis Smith, Jr. and Ondrea Griffith

LL Cool J is an American rapper credited as one of the founding fathers of the rap music with a net worth of $120 million as of 2020. He reportedly receives $150,000 per episode for his role in CBS crime drama television series – “NCIS: Los Angeles”. He is 55 years old

Born James Todd Smith on January 14, 1968, in Bay Shore, New York, LL Cool J (Ladies Love Cool James) began rapping at the age of 9. His grandfather, a jazz saxophonist who raised him after his parents divorced supported his dream to become a rapper by spending $2,000 to buy him music equipment. With the music equipment which included two turntables, an amplifier and an audio mixer, LL Cool J, 16, began making his own music and sending demo tapes to recording studios all over New York.

At the time, Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin had just founded their independent label, Def Jam. Def Jam received a copy of LL Cool J’s demo and immediately signed him unto their label. The success of LL Cool J’s music would later help establish Def Jam as a label and later get them into a mega distribution deal with Columbia Records.

Meet His Wife and Kids

The rap star got married to his wife, Simone Smith in 1995. Together, they have four children – a son named Najee and three daughters (Nina, Samaria and Italia).

Simone Smith

  • Full name: Simone Smith
  • Date of birth: March 31, 1968
  • Occupation: Social media influencer
  • Years active: NA

Born in Queens, New York, where she and LL Cool J grew up, the couple met when they were 19 and have remained together ever since. Before her marriage to the rapper, Simone had no claim to the spotlight. Alongside her husband, she has been a guest on E! Live from the Red Carpet, Oprah’s Next Chapter and E! True Hollywood Story.

She has more than 335k followers on Instagram where she gives regular updates on what is happening in her life. In 2011, Simone launched a charitable jewellery line – Sweet Touch of Hope, and partnered with Mary J. Blige on some of the designs.

Sometime in 2004, Simone Smith had to undergo an invasive surgery after she found a lump in her leg and was diagnosed with bone cancer. After the surgery, which was a tough time for the entire family, Simone Smith had to take out two and a half years to relearn how to walk.

Najee Laurent Smith

  • Full name: Najee Laurent Todd Eugene Smith
  • Date of birth: September 18, 1989
  • Occupation: NA
Najee with his parents – image source

Najee is the first child of the rapper and his wife Simone and he joined the family after 28 hours of labour.

He might be a striking image of his father but Najee didn’t inherit his entertainment genes. He hardly has any public persona and keeps away from the spotlight. It is not clear what career path he has chosen in life but he seems to be educated up to college level and doing alright.

Italia Smith

  • Full name: Italia Anita Maria Smith
  • Date of birth: January 3, 1991
  • Occupation: Real estate agent
  • Years active: NA

The oldest daughter of the rapper, Italia Smith is also not toeing the path of her father’s career. Instead, she works as a licensed real estate agent. She married Lamar Cradinez in 2017 and they have one child.

Samaria Smith

  • Full name: Samaria Leah Wisdom Smith
  • Date of birth: September 15, 1995
  • Occupation: Instagram model

Samaria is mostly known as LL Cool J’s daughter but she is also popular in her own right as an Instagram model. her modelling career was launched when she finished high school in 2013 and so far, she has modelled for different brands, including Karl Kani’s designs and Olay.

Her presence on Instagram where she has over 287k followers has also helped in boosting her career in the modelling industry.

Nina Smith

  • Full name: Nina Simone Smith
  • Date of birth: August 9, 2000
  • Occupation: Singer
  • Years active: NA

The last child in the family, Nina is the only one who has caught the music bug so far. She came out with her first single – Call Me on her 19th birthday to the surprise of her fans on Instagram who didn’t see it coming. Unlike her dad’s hip hop style, Nina chose R&B which matches her beautiful voice.

His Career Rise and Breakdown of His Net Worth

Ll Cool J Net Worth

Success With Music

LL Cool J dropped out of school to focus on his music which immediately became successful. His debut single “I Need A Beat” released under Def Jam in 1984 sold over 100,000 copies in the US. A year later in 1985, his debut album “Radio” was released. The album’s huge critical success was reflected in its commercial success. Radio reached #6 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and at #46 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. It sold over 500,000 copies in its first 5 months. Its singles “I Can’t Live Without My Radio” and “Rock the Bells” were instant hits and helped to propel the album to receiving platinum certification from the RIAA.

His sophomore album “Bigger and Deffer” was even more successful and further established him as a hip-hop artist. It sold over 3 million copies in the US alone and is credited as his most successful album to date. The album also peaked at #1 on Billboard’s R&B albums chart and #3 on Billboard’s Pop albums chart. Meanwhile, Cool showed his versatility with the single “I Need Love” which peaked on rap and pop charts.

Ll Cool J Net Worth

His third album “Walking with a Panther” released in 1989 was also a commercial hit producing charting singles like “Going Back to Cali,” and “I’m That Type of Guy”. His fourth album “Mama Said Knock You” (1990) earned him his first Grammy Award for its titular track which was an enormous hit.

After his fourth studio album, LL branched into movies. However, his involvement with Hollywood didn’t affect his musical talent. LL returned at intervals to make songs which were not only commercially successful but also earned him awards. He last released an album “Authentic” in 2013. While he hasn’t announced his retirement from music, LL focuses more on his acting career.

Out of his 13 studio albums, 9 have been certified platinum and 3, gold. He has won 2 Grammy Awards, 2 MTV Video Music Awards, 1 BET Honorary Award among others.

Success on Big and Small Screen

The rapper is also an actor. His first ever movie gig was in 1985 movie, “Kush Groove” where he played himself and sang one of his hit songs. He then starred in “The Hard Way” (1992) and “Toys” (1992). After two other movie roles, LL landed his own TV series “In The House”. It lasted for 5 seasons, ending in May 1998. Some of his notable movies include “Halloween H20: 20 Years Later”, “In Too Deep”, “Charlie’s Angels” (2000), “Deliver Us from Eva” (2003) opposite Gabrielle Union, and “Last Holiday” (2006).

Beginning from 2008, LL has been playing the role of NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna on CBS crime drama television series “NCIS: Los Angeles”. LL receives $150,000 per episode, giving him a total of $3.6 million for a season with 24 episodes. Since 2012, he has been the host of The Grammy Awards. Together with model Chrissy Teigen, LL is also the host of Spike TV’s Lip Sync Battle, a musical reality competition which premiered on April 2, 2015.

The super-star received a star on Hollywood Walk of Fame in January 2016. From his various endeavours, it is believed that the man has an estimated wealth of over $120 million.

Other Ventures Asides Music and Acting

Outside of music and acting, LL Cool J is also a businessman. He has a clothing line known as Todd Smith which produces urban apparel. Inspirations for the designs are drawn from the rapper’s music lyrics, tattoos, and notable players in the hip hop genre.

He is also a published author, with four books to his credit so far. One of his written works is an authobiography titled Make My Own Rules, which he co-wrote with Karen Hunter. Others include a children’s book titled And The Winner Is… (2002), a fitness book titled The Platinum Workout (2006) and LL Cool J (Hip-Hop Stars), cowritten in 2007.

In 1993, he launched P.O.G. (Power Of God), a music label, followed by the company Rock The Bells which is also based on music production. The latter signed artists like Amyth, Smokeman, Natice, Chantel Jones, Rufus “Scola” Waller and Simone Starks before it folded. He later started a record label/social networking site which focuses on promoting aspiring artists.

A Breakdown Of the Sources Of His Net Worth

  • Music
  • Acting
  • Clothing line – Todd Smith
  • Record labels – P.O.G. (Power Of God) and Rock The Bells
  • Four books – I Make My Own Rules, And The Winner Is…, The Platinum Workout, and LL Cool J (Hip-Hop Stars)
  • Music label/networking site –

Ll Cool J Net Worth

Highlights Of His Awards – Won and Nominated

LL Cool J is a legend in different departments in the entertainment industry and he has been honoured in every aspect.

Awards Won And Nominated For In Music

  • Grammy Awards

1989 – “Going Back To Cali” Best Rap Performance – Nominated

1992 – “Mama Said Knock You Out” Best Rap Solo Performance – Won

1993 – “Strictly Business” – Nominated

1994 – “Stand By Your Man” – Nominated

1997 – “Hey Lover” – Won

1997 – Mr. Smith Best Rap Album – Nominated

1998 – “Ain’t Nobody” Best Rap Solo Performance – Nominated

2004 – “Luv U Better” Best Rap/Sung Collaboration – Nominated

2005 – “The DEFinition” – Best Rap Album – Nominated

  • MTV Video Music Awards

1991 – “Mama Said Knock You Out” Best Rap Video – Won

1991 – “Mama Said Knock You Out” Best Cinematography in a Video – Nominated

1996 – “Doin’ It” Best Rap Video – Nominated

1997 – Lifetime Achievement Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award – Won

  • NAACP Image Awards

1996 – “Mr. Smith” Best Rap Artist – Won

1997 – “Phenomenon” Best Rap Artist – Won

2001 – “G.O.A.T.” Outstanding Hip-Hop/Rap Artist – Won

2003 – “10” Outstanding Male Artist – Won

  • Soul Train Music Awards

1987 – “Radio” Best Rap Album – Nominated

1988 – “Bigger and Deffer” Best Rap Album – Won

1988- “I Need Love” Best Rap Single – Won

1991 – “Mama Said Knock You Out” Best Rap Album – Nominated

2003 – “10” Best R&B/Soul or Rap Album of the Year – Nominated

2003 – Outstanding Career Achievements in the Field of Entertainment Quincy Jones Award – Won

2005 – “Headsprung” Best R&B/Soul or Rap Dance Cut – Nominated

  • Other Music Awards & Honours

1991 – Billboard Top Rap Singles Artist

1997 – Patrick Lippert Award, Rock The Vote

2007 – Long Island Music Hall of Fame, Inducted as part of the Inaugural Class of Inductees for his contribution to Long Island’s rich musical heritage

2011 – BET Hip Hop Awards, Honored with the I Am Hip Hop Award for his contributions to hip-hop culture

Awards Won And Nominated For In Acting

  • 1996 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series In the House – Nominated
  • 1997 – Kids’ Choice Awards Favorite Television Actor – Nominated
  • 1998 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series – Nominated
  • 1998 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture Deep Blue Sea – Nominated
  • 2000 – Blockbuster Entertainment Award Favorite Supporting Actor – Action – Won
  • 2004 – Black Reel Awards Best Actor Deliver Us from Eva – Nominated
  • 2006 – Teen Choice Awards Award for Choice Movie: Liplock (shared with Queen Latifah) Last Holiday – Nominated
  • 2011 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series NCIS: Los Angeles Won
  • 2011 – Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor: Action – Nominated
  • 2012 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series – Won
  • 2012 – Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor: Action – Nominated
  • 2012 – Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Special Class Programs The 54th Annual Grammy Awards – Nominated
  • 2013 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series NCIS: Los Angeles – Won
  • 2013 – Teen Choice Awards Choice TV Actor: Action – Won
  • 2014 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series – Won
  • 2014 – Prism Awards Male Performance in a Drama Series Multi-Episode Storyline – Nominated
  • 2015 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series – Nominated
  • 2015 – NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series – Nominated
  • 2016 – Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Structured Reality Program Lip Sync Battle – Nominated
  • 2017 – People’s Choice Awards Favorite TV Crime Drama Actor NCIS: Los Angeles – Nominated
  • 2017 – People’s Choice Awards Favorite TV Crime Drama Actor – Nominated

His Body Statistics And Why He Is Rumored To Be Gay

The star has a sexy muscular build. He is a serious bodybuilder and trainer. Cool is 6’2″ tall and 91kg in weight.

Following claims by a transsexual female memoirist of having an affair with LL Cool when she was still a man, the internet went crazy with rumours claiming that the rapper is gay.

Well, is he? no one can really tell. Cool has denied having any sexual encounter with a man at any time in his life. Although there are several other rumours of him having sex with men from his active days in the music industry, no one knows for sure if he is gay or not.

Having been married with kids, and obviously happy with his family, there is no reason to doubt the rapper when he says he isn’t gay.

Profile Summary 
First Name:James
Last Name:Smith
Also Known As:
Jack the Ripper, LL Cool J, Uncle L, The Future of the Funk, Nickelhead, LL, Mr. Smith, G.O.A.T
Rapper, record producer, actor, author, and entrepreneur
Famous For:Being one of the most succesful rappers with millions of records sold. He is also known for such hip hop hits as "Going Back to Cali", "I'm Bad", "The Boomin' System", etc
Colleges/Universities Attended:
Hillcrest High School in New York City.
Educational Qualifications:
Dropped out

Birthday & Zodiac
Age/Date of Birth:
January 14, 1968 (55 years old)
Zodiac Sign:Capricorn
Birth Place:
Bay Shore, New York, United States
African American
Country of Residence:
Physical Attributes
6 ft 1½ in or 187 cm
96 kg or 212 lbs
Eye Colour:
Dark Brown
Hair Color:
Other Body Measurements:
Chest – 46 in or 117 cm, Arms / Biceps – 16 in or 41 cm, Waist – 34 in or 86 cm
Marital Status:
Simone Smith
Family and Relatives
James Louis Smith, Jr.
Mother:Ondrea Griffith
Son, Najee (b. 1989), daughter, Italia (b. 1990), daughter, Samaria (b. 1995), daughter named Nina Simone (b. 2000)
Siblings:Not available
Other Relatives:
James Louis Smith (Paternal Grandfather), Fannie Bell Tucker (Paternal Grandmother), Nathaniel Christy Lewis (Biological Maternal Grandfather), Ethel Mae Jolly (Biological Maternal Grandmother), Eugene Gladstone Griffith (Adoptive Maternal Grandfather), Ellen E. Hightower (Adoptive Maternal Grandmother)
Net Worth
Estimated Net Worth:
$120 million
Source of Wealth:
His music and acting career, clothing line, sales of his books, businesses in the music industry
Uwa Echebiri
Reading about the luxe lives of celebrities is something many find too vain to indulge in, however, Uwa’s expert analysis on celebrity wealth would pique the curiosity of the most uninterested folk.


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