LL Cool J Says He Talked Kobe Bryant Out of Dropping Gangster Rap Album

Bryant's debut album, 'Visions,' was never released.

LL Cool J arrives at the Pre GRAMMY Gala and GRAMMY Salute

Image via Getty/Steve Granitz/WireImage

LL Cool J arrives at the Pre GRAMMY Gala and GRAMMY Salute

Kobe Bryant was a true renaissance man. Not only was he one of the greatest basketball players of all time, but he was also well-versed in the arts. He may have even had a rap career if a certain legend of the genre didn't intervene. During a recent conversation with Entertainment Tonight, LL Cool J recalled stopping Kobe from releasing a gangster rap album. 

"We talked about rap. He played me this album, this gangsta rap album and I was like, 'Kobe,' I said, 'Come on, dog. That’s not what you need to be doing,'" LL said. "He had a gangster rap album. He played me that album, we're sitting in a parking lot. I was confused, I was sittin' there like, 'What are we doing? You got endorsements, what are you doing?' It had to be the funniest moment of my life, listening to him do gangster rap.” As most Kobe fans know, Bryant always flirted with making music. He was even featured on a remix of Destiny Child's hit single, "Say My Name."

Although his debut album, Visions, was never released, his quick dip into the music industry resulted in Bryant meeting the woman of his dreams. Kobe was on the set of Tha Eastsidaz "G'd Up" music video in 1999 when he met Vanessa Laine. The two sparked a relationship and got married in 2001. The couple had four daughters together, and remained married until the death of Kobe and their daughter, Gianna. 

"They were so easy to love. Everyone naturally gravitated towards them," Vanessa said at Monday's memorial service. "They were funny, happy, silly, and they loved life. They were so full of joy and adventure. God knew they couldn’t be on this Earth without each other. He had to bring them home to Heaven together. Babe, you take care of our Gigi. And I got Nani, BB, and Coco. We are still the best team."

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