LL Cool J is passing the Grammys torch to Late Late Show host James Corden, as revealed on Tuesday (Nov. 22). While fans of the rapper may have been caught off guard by the news — LL has served as the emcee for the past five years — we’re not too upset about the awards show’s pick for a new host. (After all, LL Cool J has Lip Sync Battle to attend to.)
Whether you’re questioning the Grammys’ choice for the next master of ceremonies or celebrating Corden’s upcoming role, take a look at five reasons Billboard thinks Corden is a perfect pick.
He’s already successfully helmed awards shows
Many inaugural hosts for awards shows may be veterans in the business but haven’t done any sort of hosting gig prior. Corden, on the other hand, just did a fantastic job spearheading the Tony Awards in June — the most-watched Tonys in 15 years — and led the Brit Awards five times in a row.
He’s musically inclined himself
Corden may not have any albums to his name or any Grammy nods, but he did get his start in musical theater and has been performing on a stage since he was 18. Americans got to see his singing chops in the 2014 musical film Into the Woods, before he continued to show them off in his Late Late Show skits. And while he’s driving around with superstars during his famed Carpool Karaoke bits, Corden has managed to impress the likes of Adele and One Direction with his harmonizing skills.
He’s buds with some of the biggest names in the business
Speaking of Carpool Karaoke, considering Corden has brought everyone from Britney Spears and Justin Bieber to Elton John (and is soon adding Madonna and Bruno Mars) into his car-singing antics, he’s also proved that he has a pretty star-studded roster of musician friends. We can imagine there will be some sort of Carpool Karaoke homage at the 2017 Grammys — perhaps a live re-enactment?
His skits are always clever and creative
Aside from the ever-so-brilliant Carpool Karaoke, Corden always seems to whip up viral moments on his show (have you seen him and Tom Hanks act out Hanks’ career?). There typically seems to be at least one awkward monologue or sketch that just doesn’t quite resonate with the audience during award shows, no matter who’s hosting — but Corden has shown that he’s masterful at avoiding those kinds of moments.
He has serious charisma
Serving as a host of a show already, clearly Corden has what it takes to hold an audience’s attention for a lengthy period of time. Sure, matching LL’s charm won’t be easy, but Corden’s witty personality (and not to mention the British accent) will bring plenty of excitement to the show on Feb. 12.