Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Beleive it or not, the demise of dipset is not good for hip hop
Jay-Z on The Cam'ron/Jim Jones feud:
"I said it in one of those records on the R. Kelly album: “You know your friends when they don’t need you no more.” Y’all see if y’all really like each other. When people don’t need you, you never know. ’Cause if they need you, they’re going to be quiet about the situation. [Whispers] “I hate this nigga! This nigga wear pink one more time…” It’s like, okay, now let’s see if you can deal with success. That’s just how life is."
I don't think Jay could've said it any better. If there's one thing that Shawn knows about whats lacking in the music industry, it's loyalty. Face it, when it comes to the money, friendship, family, none of that shit matters in the world called Hip-Hop. Loyalty, or the lack there of, has affected almost every group, label, etc. Along wit disloyalty comes it's buddies greed, and jealously. It's a ghost that everyone in the industry wants to avoid but seems almost ineveitable once that cash flow comes in. And it seems it's most recent fateful stop made it to a group on who I USED to call a movement, which is better known as the Diplomats.
Rewind to 2002. A New York based emcee that some rap fans who were familiar with releases his biggest album to date on Jay-Z ran label, Roc-a-fella records. The fly, flashy, money hungry, energetic flow of Cam'ron boosted himself to platium status on his 3rd album effort overall, first roc album Come Home With Me. The lead singles "Oh boy" and "Hey Ma" off the album featured his young protege Juelz Santana, who Cam brought along with to also ink his own solo deal with Roc-a-fella. Along with the album success, fans began to follow Cam's pink fashion trend. Me personally, I never got into it, but I know I seen lots of people who did take heed. Pink New Era fitteds, pink jackets, it was a hot mess. But Killa Cam, didn't stop there.
After the immediate success of the Come home with me album, Cam got the green light from co owner of Roc-a-fella at the time, Dame Dash, to bring his other childhood friends along for the ride, Jim Jones and Freeky Zekey. Cam'ron and longtime buddy Jim Jones branded Diplomat records and released their first album, the successful double disc Diplomatic Immunity through Roc-a-fella. Now Cam's got everything set up. He's got his career rockin, a few grammy nominations, people we're checkin for Juelz and Jim's albums, and he got hip-hop fans beleiveing his crew was a force to be reckoned with. The only way was up. Right?
Fast forward to about eh, 2005. The diplomats have grown into Dipset the movement. More members, more money, more album deals, more album sales, just more more more. It seemed as if Cam got a new chain every month. Juelz started picking up his own fanbase. Freeky was in jail most of the time, and Jim slowlly but surely became known. Dipset created a cult like following, a la Wu Tang Clan. EIther you loved Dipset or you hated Dipset, nothing neutral. And more importantly, they created lingo. Can u say "no homo"??? 'Cause it seems like everyone else is.
However with the ongoing success unveiled the arrogance and cockyness of Killa Cam pretty much thinking he could say whatever he wanted in a song. He had rave reviews in his debut acting job in the movie Paid in Full. He was the CEO of the most powerful movement at that time. He had every one rocking pink. There we're rumors he was dating Mariah Carey. His 2nd and last solo album on Roc-a-fella, Purple Haze went Gold with barely any promotion. All that sure has to boast any man's ego. Yet his flow was not the same. He did not carry the energy he used to before he started to get some big paper. It seemed as if he became "comfortable" with the money he made. Only the hardcore dipset fans could tolerate it. The haters hated it. However Jim and Juelz still followed suit referring Cam to as "the boss", "the don", and "king Joffe Joe." Speaking of that lack of promotion of Purple Haze, Cam and the Dipset left Roc-a-fella because of that and of course, the obvious, Jay-Z taking full ownership of the ROC. Which then began a feud with Cam and Jim vs Jay. But we'll skip that.
I can't really pick a time where it began but it was evident that Cam started to play the behind the scene role while Jim and Juelz we're showing up at all the parties, awards, sporting the rockstar swag. But it always wasn't like that. Whenever you seen Killa Cam you'd see Jimmy and Juelz right along with him. You would still see Juelz and Cam together but rarely Jim and Cam, maybe for a video here and there. People began to ask questions if there was any tension between the Don and the Capo. I do know that Jim began to create more of name for himself breaking through the game. Was Cam getting jealous of Jim's spotlight? Was Jim tired of Cam's shenanigans? It all became official when Jim released his biggest single ever, We Fly High (Ballin). Cam was in the original version for the We Fly high video, but wasn't in the remix video, who featured just about every member of Dipset, which sparked even more questions.
Then they both tried to play the cool role whenever asked about it. "Ain't no beef blah blah", "Cam is my brother forever", "Jim is my brother forever", yea whatever. I wasnt buying the shit, because here's where it gets fishy. You all know about that little beef 50 Cent and Cam started with each other. Now all dipset fans, even hiphop fans in general know that whenever Cam had beef with another rapper (Nas, Ma$e, Jay) that Jim would hop along and take Cam's side. In the midst of the Cam-50 beef, Jim and Juelz hop on stage wit the enemy, 50! Juelz said he was there just to support Jim, but where does that leave Jim? Why would he hop on stage with 50 knowing that he was beefin with the dude that put him on? It made Killa look like he lost all power in the group he started. But by this time Cam was no where to be seen. After the youtube video of him standing in front of his pool telling 50 it was gonna be a hot summer, he was full blown M.I.A. There we're alot a questions to be answered but Jim finally broke his silence:
"Me and Cam'ron haven't spoken to each other in a year...I kept quiet out of loyalty, I felt like if we can't be friends then at least we can do business together," Jones explained to Miss Info. "But now I can't be next to you...I'm through with being in hot water because of you...We still the Diplomats. We worked too hard to achieve our own success and now we're gonna do something new."
Shit sounds like a movie so far right? Doesn't end there.
Months and months go buy making it look like Jim is the new leader of the Dips now sans Cam'ron. No music was heard from him, no interviews, nothing. But members of the dipset insisted he was still the leader and he was just "chilling". Out of nowhere he resurfaced and released a mixtape around November of last year and released this statement to New York radio personality, Miss Info:
"I still haven’t spoken to Jim. But Jim ran with me for over 10 years, he worked hard, and I wish him the best of luck. Everybody thinks I’m mad at Jim. Why am I mad? I told people for years that Jimmy was gonna be a star. So its better on my resume…I wish him the best. The only thing is, him being with 50, I can’t really run with that. Hang out with who you want to hang out…but me, I can’t really do nothing like that."
Then the nigga puts out that mixtape which was cool but he went back M.I.A again! LOL.
Anywho, it has been revealed that Jim and Cam was going thruough "disagreements" but now the whole group is collectively working on Diplomatic Immunity 3. Me as a fan, I'm not even really excited as I normally would be 'cause I don't beleive it. The shit just aint the same. One of the things I loved most about the dips was that they we're so closely knit. Go back to the top of this post to what Jay said of the situation. When Cam was the only one who had the money and the status Jim and Juelz we're loyal as ever. Now that all three have established themselves it's just ain't the same. Cam has dipset as a whole, Jim has byrdgang, a subset of dipset and Juelz has Skullgang, another subset of dipset. It's tremendous they're all bosses but damn can yall at least do another song together? The most important fact about it is hip-hop aint the same without them together. Yea I know they ain't the most lyrical but they are always a topic of discussion. Who are the haters going to hate now on? Soulja Boy Tell 'em? Sound off! Fans and haters!