Friday, June 19, 2009

When Cam Could Still Rap, Guest Appearance Edition

I'm sorry I don't have more rarities for you, but scouring the old Diplomats mixtapes is a lot of work. Typing up Cam lyrics, you realize that some of the charges of nonsensicality have a little merit and that some of his lines have no purpose other than to fit into his insane rhyme schemes. Either that or some of his shit is beyond me. Another thing that you notice is Cam's ad-libs, which, rather than serve as emphasis, function as a weird running commentary on what he's saying. Often Cam asks a question of himself in ad-lib, answers it in verse, and then goes "oh," like he's thanking himself for answering. Oddly enough, Styles, who you normally don't think of as being anything like Cam, uses ad-libs in a very similar - if anything even more wry - way. I should write about Styles sometime.

Yo, I leave jail smoothly, jump in the pale hooptie
Fuck the dick-suckin, ass-lickin male groupies
Diplomats, you look at alliance, you shook in defiance
I'm cookin up coke, lookin for clients (pure white!)
I got the AK, SK, 40 Cal
Scope red on your head still 40 thou
Worse than files of Nerf-Turf, burstin blaow
Give the church my child, ask to nurture thou
'Cause I've seen the hearses now,
But if this was Gilligan's Isle, Thirstin Howl, wow
Look at his kicks, they worth a thou
Isn't it sad, you do what I say and wish that you had
You Michigan crabs, you stabbed up, piss in a bag
Worse than that, zipped in a bag
Broke to fractions, a division of math
I'm, Hollywooood, shittin on Shaft, we go hard

DMX f. Cam'ron, 'We Go Hard,' Grand Champ (2003), 1:20-2:04.

All you got to say is "hide me," I ride free
I be, the one to change your birth date, S.S., or ID (I got all that)
No more hanging with the YG's, State Prop
No Roc, private dock, in case you need an IV,
No more Bent', that's Accord money, 420
See, can't afford money, money, he's award money
Whether ninety or the first degree
If it's murder in the first degree (what?), it'll be the third degree (oh!)
And they looking for the perjury (what else?)
If you ain't murk the G, perfectly, he'll be in surgery
Take your seed out the nursery, nurse him at the precinct
Give him dessert, that ain't where he deserve to be (not at all)
And I went through this personally, certainly (faggots!)
3-2 for burglary, [now it? Niles?] was referred to me
So they play us in no way, no way
Blaze up the roadways, A.C. and O.J.
Read the paper, eggs and OJ (OJ!)
Call CD, the head of the O'Jays (that's my African nigga)
That's a gipsy cab, risky all the chips we had
45 flea-flicker, we niggas, hit the gas
When the operation go stale, ain't no jail
I did my whole album on bail (that's the truth!)
I got you, Mac Mittens, send them a black ribbon
Attack with mac spittin', I can't go back prison

Beanie Sigel f. Cam'ron, "Wanted Dead or Alive," The B. Coming (2005), 2:47-4:04.

Doggy, I seldom stunt, but got some pell 'em stunts
Call 'em dunts, tell them hoes, go sell them cunts
Roll hella blunts, and I'm only gonna tell you once (no, no no)
So you should tell a friend, to tell a friend, to tell a bitch
Tel-a-thon, telescope, televised, can tell I'm rich (damn!)
'Cause I sell my bricks (what else?),
call hoes poultry (why?), chickens that smell like fish, bitch (oh)
You rockin' Dada Dot, me I keep a Prada box
Ak', gotta rock the rocks, now I got the rock of rocks (minimum)
And I cop a top, AK, chop a Glock, suede beige knock-a-knocks
System in the drop of drops (damn!), get the mobsters mopped
Get the poppas popped, top a top, Chaka Khan,
Dog, they'll be shottas shot,
I done shot a lot, shot the nine, shot the rock
Sure shot, shot for sure - but I'm secure
No security, Killa keep Glocks and fours,
Plus blocks of raw, probably popped your whore
But I'm not for sure, bitch wanna, hop aboard
Hit up the docks and shores

Jae Millz f. Cam'ron and T.I., 'No No No (Remix)' (2003), 0:00-0:59. (Sorry the intro is missing, a non-clean version of this thing is notoriously difficult to find.)


bding7 said...

Personally, when it comes to ad-libs, I prefer the running commentary to just serving as emphasis. Sometimes, it can help you pick up on things you may have missed. That's just how I feel.

On another note, Cam on No I.D. beats like "We Go Hard" is something that should have occurred more often back in the Purple Haze era.

What's your goal with these posts? It's hard to argue that Cam is anywhere near where he used to be, bu what do we do after with these posts when we try to look past what may seem obvious to some?

tray said...

"bu what do we do after with these posts when we try to look past what may seem obvious to some?"

Do you mean, when others try to look past what may seem obvious to us? I think primarily that I enjoy writing about Cam. To me he has one of the best bodies of work of any rapper this decade, and it's worthy of appreciation. Secondarily, I think there's an alarming number of critics who either don't listen to much rap, do but are so used to writing about rock, where there isn't such a premium on technical things like actually being able to sing, or have some ideological opposition to criticism that largely deals in formal concerns. I recall Brandon saying a month or two ago that people who defend Eminem for his great flow were profoundly mistaken and crypto-rockists, and while I think his latest album is probably indefensible and don't much care for his earlier work, I think it's perfectly acceptable for someone to think the world of Eminem for no other reason than that he was a technically stunning rapper. Back to the posts, I suppose this is naive, but I feel that if some of the people who like Crime Pays were to listen to something like his verse on Sippin On Some Syrup, where his hyper-articulated flow actually mimics and almost rides the little beeps in the beat, they couldn't help but see the error of their nutty claims that Cam is back.