What Went Right With… Cam’ron?

A caricature of Cam'ron

Cam’ron (real name Cameron Ezike Giles) has had a long-running and impressive career but he isn’t mentioned by the media as much as his peers. From Killa Kam’s Children Of The Corn days (with Bloodshed, McGruff, Mase, and Big L) to the Diplomats/Dipset era (with Juelz Santana, Jim Jones, and Freeky Zekey), Cam whether solo or with either of his cliques, has been representing Hip-Hop’s ever-changing landscape in a generally credible way. From his debut album Confessions Of Fire on Untertainment to his Roc-A-Fella LP Come Home With Me, Cam’ron has dropped singles like “357” and “Let Me Know” to “Horse & Carriage” and “Oh Boy” which have carefully walked the line between hardcore Hip-Hop and cross-over Hip-Pop. Radio-friendly tracks like “What Means The World To You” (with its sample of “Roxanne” by The Police) and “Girls” (with its interpolation of Cindy Lauper’s “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun”) are offset by his darker lyrics in “Confessions” (which mentions child abuse and incest – but is also funny), personal content in “I.B.S.” (which tackles chronic disease) and “I Hate My Job” (which does what it says on the tin), plus the meaningful “Prophecy” (involving family and death), to the outright hardcore yet underrated “That’s Me” from his sophomore album S.D.E.. Save to say nobody’s done it like ‘Ron did it.

Children Of The Corn was a potentially great Hip-Hop group. Their trio of singles “American Dream” (b/w “Harlem U.S.A.”), “A Star Is Born”, and “I Remember When” were all fantastic and had they dropped an album back in the late golden era it would have been something.

Unfortunately, C.O.C. disbanded after the death of Cam’s cousin and band-mate Bloodshed. Killa Kam then dropped the “Killa” portion of his stage-name (just like fellow Harlem MC-turned-chart-artist Murda Mase dropped the “Murda”) but unlike Ma$e, Cam’Ron’s debut album at least contained material that didn’t completely go in the opposite direction of his earlier incarnation.

All this being said, it’s not all about praise. I’ll admit that I’ve disliked some of Cam’s more popular songs, especially “Hey Ma” and “Daydreaming”. But, kinda like his pink coats, it’s preferable over an all-out, star-spangled twatsuit.

With a style that blended anger with swagger, and the ability to turn even the most pop-sounding production into something credible, Cam’Ron doesn’t get the amount of recognition he deserves these days. If a rapper’s tryna go gold and platinum and he absolutely gotta be liked by the mainstream, this is how you do it. Listen to my Spotify playlist below and try to tell me different.

Let Me Know.

This is an unfinished and previously unpublished article and caricature from 2015 with updated embeds

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