Rick Ross, Lil Kim & More To Perform At LL Cool J's Rock The Bells Fest

By Tony M. Centeno

April 5, 2022

Rick Ross, LL Cool J & Lil' Kim
Photo: Getty Images

It's been a long time coming for LL Cool J and his iconic brand. A few years after winning his lawsuit against the previous Rock The Bells music festival, the original "Rock The Bells" rapper is finally bringing back the beloved music festival in his own way.

On Monday, April 4, the recent host of the 2022 iHeartRadio Music Awards announced his Rock The Bell Festival is going down towards the end of the summer. He revealed the first round of performers and promised that more artists would be announced soon. Hosted by by Roxanne Shanté, DJ Mister Cee, and DJ Scratch, the festival will feature performances from Ice Cube, Rick Ross, Lil' Kim, The Diplomats (Cam'Ron, Juelz Santana and Jim Jones), Fat Joe and Remy Ma, Jadakiss, Scarface, Trina, N.O.R.E, Digable Planets, plus the Rock & Roll Hall of Famer himself with DZ Z-Trip.

“This festival is my way of showing love to the community of Hip-Hop and celebrating the incredible journey this culture has taken, going from DJ Kool Herc’s Sedgwick Avenue rec room, to the global phenomenon we all cherish today,” LL said according to Rolling Stone. “Getting to bring some of the most iconic and influential Hip-Hop artists to the same stage, in my hometown and the city that started it all, is an honor and I can’t wait for everyone to see what we have in store for them.”

The first Rock The Bells Festival was held in 2004 in California. Since then, event company Guerilla Union took the festival on the road and toured the country with a slew of Hip-Hop acts until 2013 when poor ticket sales led to the festival's indefinite cancellation. Then, in 2017, LL Cool J appealed to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board in California to stop Guerilla Union and its founder Chang Weisberg from trademarking the festival, which also bares the same as LL's 1985 single.

After Weisberg continued to file for the trademark, LL Cool J formally filed a lawsuit in 2018 to stop Weisberg from using the name at all. A year later, a California judge ruled in the Queens rapper's favor and barred Weisberg on his brand from using "Rock The Bells" in the future.

The festival is happening on August 8 at the Forest Hills Stadium in New York. LL's Rock The Bells Festival will include live performances, food, interactive experiences, fashion, art exhibits and plenty more. Tickets go on sale on April 8.

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