When professionals venture into a different expertise, they’re often met with statements like “remain where you belong” or “do what you know best.”
That’s why the zeal to openly have a second career is neglected amongst celebrities.
For Kobe Bryant, what he knew best was being a professional basketball player, but he also had a keen interest in rap. Sadly, this talent was not revealed to the world, until after 20 years.
A rapper known as LL Cool J, helped to keep this talent a secret for fear of how fans would react to it.
Keep reading below for more information.
Kobe Was More Than Basketball
Juggling two or more demanding careers at the same time is not something people see every day in the celebrity world.
Often times, it starts off with the two, and along the line, one career is desired above another. In Kobe’s case, he had to travel from one place to another, showing off his basketball prowess, that he did not have the time to become a rapper.
However, his love for music was so great that he recorded a full rap album in year 2000, but with the help of his friend, Cool J, this album remained a secret until a few days before he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
A Basketball Legend
Maybe focusing on his basketball career turned out to be a good thing in the end, because Kobe even in his absence, has remained a sensation in the basketball world.
He spent his childhood years watching his father play basketball in Italy, before relocating to Philadelphia to pursue his athletic dreams.
In 1996, he enlisted for the NBA, putting behind any plans for college at age 20. In no time, Kobe teamed with Shaquille O’Neal to lead his team; Lakers, to three consecutive championship leagues.
After a long and gallant career with the NBA, he retired in 2016, but never stopped coaching his daughter, Gianna Bryant, who was inspired to walk in his shoes.
Sadly, father and daughter lost their lives in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020.
Kobe Bryant Loved Rap Music
His love for basketball was known throughout the world, and his love for his wife, Vanessa and his children, was unquestionable.
But Kobe also had deep love in his heart for rap music, and it was so strong that he recorded an album in 2000, after he signed with Sony Records. In the album, he collaborated with stars like Tyra Banks, 50 Cent, Nas and Brian McKnight.
Cool J explained to “Entertainment Tonight,” that when Kobe show him the album titled “Visions” he talked him out of it, saying he had to focus on his NBA career and endorsements.
Kobe may have silenced his rap career for good, but he never regretted going into it in the first place.
The NBA legend had affiliations with many rap stars in the industry, and though he wasn’t making music, he was inspired always.
The album which finally surfaced on May 10, 2021 earned a lot of mixed reviews from several websites and news outlets.
“… I’m just glad this piece of history has been (at the semi) preserved for posterity,” Connor Toole website wrote.
To listen to the album, click here!