LL Cool J admits that 2012’s Grammy event was “bittersweet”.

Music icon Whitney Houston passed away the day before the awards show last year.

The ceremony was largely a tribute to Whitney and her contributions to the entertainment industry.

LL also hosted the Grammys in 2012 and is excited to return to his post as presenter this year under lighter circumstances.

"It made the event bittersweet and there was a whole cloud of sorry on it," he told USA Today.

"But at the same time, I was glad it went the way it went. We were able to pay respect to Whitney and her family, and at the same time give all of those deserving artists an opportunity to shine.

"[I’m] excited and grateful to be back. They have some great things planned and I hope people find it as exciting as we do."

LL will be releasing his thirteenth studio album in May which is entitled Authentic Hip-Hop.

The 45-year-old rapper and actor is elated to have returned to form musically and can’t wait to share his new work with fans.

"I used the word 'authentic' because it's really me doing something with heart," LL explained.

"I'm not going to pretend that I'm 15 or be chasing whatever the current trend is. What I didn't want to do was make a record that is all about [featured artists]. Nowadays, you hear a record on the radio, and you don't know whose record it is because there are so many people on it. I want people to know it's an LL record."

The Grammy Awards ceremony will take place this Sunday February 10 in Los Angeles.