"I Need Love" is the second single from LL Cool J's second album, Bigger and Deffer.

"I Need Love"
I need Love.jpg
Single by LL Cool J
from the album Bigger and Deffer
ReleasedJuly 13, 1987
Format12", 7" vinyl, CD
GenreGolden age hip hop
LabelDef Jam, Columbia, CBS Records
Songwriter(s)James Todd Smith
Producer(s)LL Cool J, L.A. Posse
LL Cool J singles chronology
"I'm Bad"
"I Need Love"
"Go Cut Creator Go"


The drums were played with a Roland TR-808 and the keyboard tone was played with a Yamaha DX7 using the Fulltines patch.


It reached #1 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and #14 on the Billboard Hot 100 while becoming one of the first rap songs to enjoy mainstream popularity in the UK, reaching #8 in the UK Singles Chart. The single won a Soul Train Music Award for Best Rap Single in 1988 Soul Train Music Awards. The song ranked #13 on About.com's Top 100 Rap Songs.[1] Number 60 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop.

Track listingEdit


  1. "I Need Love" – 5:23


  1. "I Need Love" (edit) – 4:15
  2. "My Rhyme Ain't Done" – 3:45


Chart (1987) Peak
Austrian Singles Chart 13
Dutch Top 40 3
German Singles Chart 6
Swiss Singles Chart[2] 6
UK Singles Chart 8
US Billboard Hot 100[3] 14
US Billboard Hot Black Singles 1

Covers and samplesEdit

The music, both melody and beats were lifted from an instrumental by Brooklyn songwriter Jayson Dyall entitled "Zoraida's Heartbeat" which was written and recorded in 1984.[4] This song, along with other songs on a cassette tape of several raw recordings by Jayson Dyall was presented to LL Cool J by one of Cool J's associates, who met Jayson through a music classifieds ad in early 1986 and told him he can get LL to listen to his music. Jayson Dyall never received any acknowledgment from LL Cool J or Def-Jam Records for originally writing the music for this song.

  • Irish singer-songwriter Luka Bloom recorded a cover version of the song on his 1992 album The Acoustic Motorbike.
  • R&B group Blaque experts the composition of the sample of the song on their track "Don't Go Looking for Love", originally appeared on their 1999 self-titled debut album.
  • Rapper Necro used the beat on his song "I Need Drugs", which was released on his 2000 album, I Need Drugs.
  • Master P sampled this song on his single "I Need Dubs", featuring son Romeo, of his 2005 album Ghetto Bill.
  • Amanda Blank sampled the song on "A Love Song" from her 2009 album I Love You.
  • Krizz Kaliko copied lyrics of the song for the first few lines of his song "Anxiety," off his debut album Vitiligo by saying, "When I'm alone in my room, sometimes I stare at the wall/And in the back of my mind, I hear my conscious call/Telling me I need a gun."
  • Yo Gotti sampled the song on his single "Let's Vibe" featuring Pleasure P.
  • Rick Ross sampled the song on the single, "Aston Martin Music" featuring Drake and Chrisette Michele from the rapper's 2010 album, Teflon Don.
  • Jagged Edge sampled the song called "Promise (Cool JD Remix)".
  • In 2016, New Orleans (rapper) Eryk Leone paid homage to the hip hop pioneer with his own remake version of "I Need Love" from the triple platinum "Bigger and Deffer" album.


  1. ^ Henry Adaso. "100 Greatest Rap Songs". About.com Entertainment.
  2. ^ hitparade.ch
  3. ^ "LL Cool J Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  4. ^ Berry, Michael (14 June 2018). "Listening to Rap: An Introduction". Routledge – via Google Books.