Icon LL Cool Js thirteenth and final Def Jam album Exit 13 promises to be memorable, as the Queens native has confirmed an unexpected collaboration with legendary Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora.
The partnership reveals LLs admiration of rock music and what he felt was a golden opportunity to work with another seminal artist.
I was a huge fan, Im still a huge fan, of the Slippery When Wet album, LL explained in an exclusive interview with AllHipHop.com. And I love that talk box sound. And I wanted to do a Rock remix, but I wanted it to be official and I wanted to do it with someone who Im a fan of.
Sambora is famous for his highly melodic guitar arrangements, talk box techniques, and solos, which can be heard on classics such as Bon Jovis Livin on a Prayer, Ill Be there for You, and Bad Medicine.
The two legends remixed the official first single Baby, with also enlists R&B newcomer The Dream.
The song will also feature slightly different lyrics from the original.
Anticipating mixed reactions from fans due to the apparent clash of styles and genres, LL remains steadfast that Hip-Hop needs to turn back to favoring experimentation over safe topics and musical arrangements.
I thought it would be real hot for those who appreciate that type of music. The majority of artists theyd rather be safe, LL disclosed. Look, at the end of the day, its safe to talk about being fly over a hard beat. Or dancing. Thats safe.
Stating that Internet feedback can cause an artist to unwisely change their direction, LL argues that many of his recognized classic records wouldnt exist if he took that approach.
If AllHipHop was around when I Need Love came out, that wouldnt have been a great song for that, LL reasoned. he reasons. That audience, for the most part, is not really big fans of my love songs. But I do them anyway. And I see the comments and I do them after I see the comments. So its about believing in what you do and not letting people sway you.
Exit 13 is set for release on September 9 and features additional guests 50 Cent, Lil Mo, The Dream, Grandmaster Caz, Wyclef Jean, Fat Joe, and Sheek Louch.
Productions credits include Marley Marl, DJ Scratch, Ryan Leslie, and Scott Storch.