made its presence known at this year’s NAACP Image Awards with the inclusion of
rap veteran LL Cool J and The Roots.LL
Cool J presided over the 38th annual event, which was held Friday (March 2)."I
won’t ask you why the chicken crossed the road," the rhymester joked as he
asked the crowd to bear with his first time playing host. "I justask
that you bear with me. I’m going to try to carry this thing with dignity."LL’s
appearance at the awards served a deeper purpose for Image Awards writer and producer
P. Frank Williams, who felt the rapper acted as a bridge for generations old and
new to come together."One
of the best things about the show as a Hip-Hop person is to see somebody like
LL Cool J step up and merge the old school NAACP with the Hip-Hop generation,"
Williams told AllHipHop.com. "It was a very dignified affair. It wasn’t the
Source awards so, we can throw in U2’s Bono with LL Cool J and that’s a good mix
of the Hip-Hop generation and the rock stars."LL
wasn’t the only Hip-Hop representative working the crowd.The
Roots took center stage later at the event as part of musical tribute to NAACP
Chairman award recipient Bono.The
collective nabbed the award for Outstanding Duo or Group over fellow nominees
Outkast, Gnarls Barkley and the Cheetah Girls prior to the livetelecast."We
won best group. We’re the only group, right? Do people still work together nowadays?"
drummer ?uestlove quipped while expressing the group’s happiness at winning.
"We’re honored. This is 15 years in the making."The
aftermath of the Academy Awards continued to resonate as best winner Forest Whitaker
and best supporting actress winner Jennifer Hudson took home the NAACP award for
outstanding actor and outstanding supporting actress in a motion picture.CNN
personality Soledad O’Brien received the honorary President’s Award for her work
as a journalist, while Bill Cosby was inducted into the NAACP Image Awards Hall
is an honor, because of the humble beginnings," Cosby told AllHipHop.com.
"You have slavery, you have words to correct the wrongsto stand up against.
The advancement may not just been just at the institutional or the systemic issues…the
advancement has to do withgetting people involved in the home – every where."
NAACP Awards were sponsored by companies like General Motors (GM), Verizon, Fed
Ex, Coors and others.
The ceremony comes on the heels of the the NAACP’s new alliance with Bono’s ONE
Campaign as well as the recent resignation of NAACP president and CEO Bruce S.
wish Mr. Gordon well in his future pursuits," said NAACP national board of
directors chairman Julian Bond in a statement. "I have named our general
counsel Dennis Hayes as interim president. We will immediately begin a widespread
search for a replacement, examining candidates from the non-profit, corporate,
and civil rights communities and others, seeking a new president who can insure
our mission of social justice advocacy strengthens and grows as we approach our
Centennialanniversary in 2009."The
ONE Campaign partnership marks the NAACP’s official stand against global AIDS
and extreme poverty in Africa and the world’s poorest countries.There
are currently more than 1 billion people around the world live on less than $1
has felt the impact of the HIV/AIDS virus more than any other region of the world.
Last year alone, more than 2.1 million Africans died from AIDS last year, in addition
to 24.7 million Africans who are infected with the HIV virus.