Tuesday, November 6, 2012

On Cam'ron, No Homo

If there's three facts you need to know about me, it's this:

  1. Blueberry is the greatest flavour of yogurt on earth
  2. I get my best sleep on the right side of the bed
  3. I'll always vouch for Cam'ron
No matter what, I will always vouch for Cameron Giles.  Flea from Killa Season.  Rico from Paid In Full.  Cam'ron is that movie that doesn't make much sense but is hella fun to watch, there's action, comedy, drama and suspense.  There's moments in the movie, you have to rewind to make sure you didn't miss anything, you laugh and have to pause to catch yourself, bad ass moments that makes you feel like you're the man of the hour, references left and right that you have to remind yourself of before continuing on and it all ends in a blaze of glory.  That's a Cam'ron verse for you.

Been in the rap game for over 15 years, Cam first came out with his debut album Confessions of Fire in 1998, his worse album IMO, aside from the singles "Horse and Carriage" and "3-5-7", there wasn't much else to look back on this album except maybe hearing Cam'ron go back and forth with his mom on "Me, My Mom and Jimmy", funny enough it was Jim Jones (known as Jimmy Jones back then) first rap.  Two years later he drops S.D.E. and it's not really a sophomore slump if your first was bad.  It's more of going from an average of a D to a C+, it's an improvement but it's not really much of a change.  It wasn't until he joined Dame Dash and the rising Roc-A-Fella when Cam finally found his footing with Come Home With Me.  His best album.  A lot of people will try and tell you it's Purple Haze but it's CHWM, trust me.

With features from Memphis Bleek, Beanie Sigel and Jay-Z and production from The Heatmakerz, Just Blaze and Kanye West, CHWM became Cam's most successful album and got himself a platinum plaque.  With the backing of Roc-A-Fella, Cam'ron brought his group The Diplomats to the front and a movement began.  With Jim Jones, childhood friend Freaky Zeekey and young protege Juelz Santana and the underground releases of various Diplomat mixtapes, the album Diplomat Immunity was released with the lead single "Dipset Anthem" and it was official, the Diplomat were here and Dipset became a fixture in every high schoolers vocabulary.  Young protege Juelz was featured on the singles "Oh Boy" and "Hey Ma" and he quickly became the point guard of the Dipset team with Cam being coach.  First drew up the plan to have him on both singles, getting folks familiar and in 2003 his debut From Me To U with the lead single Santana's Town with the memorable chant, dipset, dipset, dipset, dipset.  Further making Dipset one to remember for the future and beyond. 

"Two more for Cam for taking over the Roc" and he did.

The Dipset movement was really something you wanted to be a part of.  Back in those days, it was cool to wear shirts and jackets that were two sizes to big for you, white Air Force Ones, throwback jerseys and the baggest jeans around.  Diplomats held their flag up high, they gave fans three albums to keep their CD players and iPods occupied.  The Dips had a good run, they were the who the kids looked up to at the time.  Talking about it today is like it's folklore, find someone whose a big Dipset fan and you'll have an enjoyable and lengthy conversation.  Cam was funny, ignorant, controversial and witty, plus he made some great music.  I know today's election day for the States and some folks are in line waiting to vote for either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney.  I'm not big on politics (that's just a fight I want no part of) but I'd vote for Cam, of the Diplomat party.

I'll also vote that Cam'ron has the best viral videos for a rapper, ever.  Truly hilarious clips of the life of Cameron Giles.  Misadventures of Cameron Giles, isn't a potential title for a movie it's the way Cam lives.  The worst part is, the internet today missed out on the peak of Cam and the Diplomats.  The trending topics that would be created would have you on Twitter for hours.  Whether or not it's 140 characters, it wouldn't matter.  The same way social media loves quote lyrics from everybody from Drake to One Direction to 2 Chainz, I can only imagine what it would be like for Cam.  Cam was cocky and confident and every time he stepped in the booth he'd exemplify it:
"Hey yo lock my garage, rock my massage
Fuck it, bucket by Osh Kosh B'gosh
Golly I'm gully, look at his galoshes
Gucci, gold, platinum plaque collages
From collabos, ghost writin' for assholes

Wanna use my brain, then give Killa mad dough"
Twitter and Facebook would go crazy if the Dipset trip to London came out today.  If you haven't seen the clip, the treacherous trio and Cam's girl ride around with Tim Westwood to a London strip club where they see awful looking strippers and a drunk Jim Jones talks (yells actually) to his chick at home and Cam lays some game about "a plan" to his fellow Diplomat.  Cam'ron on The O'Reilly Factor has already spawned a meme and I'm sure Jon Daily would be saying You Mad for a good week.  The Dipset "On My Block" freestyle on Rap City is a gem that blog sites would get giddy for with the amount of quotables on it, I'm sure it would break records on YouTube aswell.  And as usual Cam just counts money as he spits effortlessly:

"I'm Anfernee I do things the Hardaway
Pardon me, escalade, marmalade, mama stay
And I send 'em where stars'll play
And the dude cop a car today color: pink chardonnay
And I'll clap at ya man, clap the clappers
Clap on clap off, clap at his hands"

Some never hopped on the movement when it was hot and probably won't now, that's fine.  As a supporter of Cam, I'll admit he's been trying relive the magic he once had at the height of his fame and the tricks haven't expanded his audience.  He's shown signs of greatness but it's in spurts or hidden in mediocre mixtapes.  Regardless, Cam was/still is a national treasure of the rap game.  He's respected by men and the ladies love him, he's truly a hero that is often overlooked but I'll still give Killa his due.

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