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"I Need Love" was the second single from LL Cool J's second album, Bigger and Deffer. The song is considered the first rap ballad and was released on September 2, 1987. (It was not the first rap love song, however; in 1982 the Sugarhill Gang had recorded "The Lover in You", which reached Number 55 on the R & B charts.) 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 1987. The song ranked #13 on About.com's Top 100 Rap Songs. Number 60 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop. The drums was played with a Roland TR-808 and the keyboard tone was played with a Yamaha DX7.
Music video 
The story of the music video is very much inspired by the song. At the beginning of LL Cool J sitting with some women on a couch, then cheer him on too many fans go out and then he performs a transition in a living room that song. Then goes outside a saloon, before he sits down. In a Fadeout scene sits a girl crying on a bed behind LL Cool J, then he goes out there and cheer him again on the way to the limo, fans. Later, he expects a reporter at an interview. After the girl arguing with her father because of poor grades in the testimony and sheer anger of the father of the daughter's poster of LL Cool J pulls away from the wall, whereupon the daughter is crying. Rose again from the sedan, LL Cool J fans and Paparazzi followed, after which it rises again with the girls in the limo. During the trip he and the girl get into a conversation, which embrace both themselves and find themselves in a bathtub again. LL Cool J raps at the end of the song to end.
Track listing 
- "I Need Love" – 5:23
- "I Need Love" (edit) – 4:15
- "My Rhyme Ain't Done" – 3:45
|US Billboard Hot 100
|US Billboard Hot Black Singles
|Austrian Singles Chart
|Dutch Top 40
|German Singles Chart
|Swiss Singles Chart
|UK Singles Chart
Covers and samples 
The music, both melody and beats was lifted from an instrumental by Brooklyn songwriter Jayson Dyall entitled "Zoraida's Heartbeat" which was written and recorded in 1984. 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.
- 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)".