Since dropping his 1998 debut album, Confessions Of Fire,' Cam'ron has evolved into a cult figure of sorts. Although having a few hit records to his name ('Horse & Carriage' and 'What Means The World To You') and was regarded as a worthy lyricist -- evidenced on classics such as '357' and 'Let Me Know' -- he didn't truly hit his stride until forming The Diplomats and aligning with fellow Harlemite Damon Dash's Roc-A-Fella Records.

Striking platinum with his Roc debut, 'Come Home With Me,' while building his Dipset movement, Cam now had the full attention of the rap world heading into the release of his 2004 follow-up, 'Purple Haze.'

While not achieving the success of 'Come Home With Me,' the collection was still well-received by many fans and featured a litany of bangers. Infamous for his flamboyant raps and penchant for humorous quips, the Harlem representative stands as one of the few rappers from his era that is still relevant to young and old fans, alike.

So, being that this LP turns a decade old today (Dec. 7) and was the soundtrack to many of this generation's new crop of artists, journalists and fans, we felt it was only right to round up a few of our esteemed colleagues to wax poetic over Cam'ron's standout album. Damn, we're getting old.

  • 1

    'Nyemiah Supreme'

    Artist

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "This is actually a bad memory. I was driving to school with a Jr. license blasting the album. I ran a red light got a ticket that got my license suspended for 90 days and I was back on the city bus (Laughs)."

    Favorite Song(s) On The Album:

    "'Chicken Head Skit,' 'Hey Lady' and 'Shake.'"

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "'Shake,' 'Killa Cam' and 'Down & Out.'"

    One Song From The Album You Wish You Could've Been Featured On:

    "'Shake' Featuring JR Writer."

    Twitter
  • 2

    David Amaya

    Social Media Strategist (Complex)

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "I was only 14 when this album dropped. So it was kind of tough to purchase an actual copy of it (Laughs). But, I remember I knew a senior at the time (I was only a freshman) and he bought it for me. This was actually the first time listening to a Cam album. (I know I know). But after hearing this album, it really made me want to listen to what else he had. Which made me listen to Come Home With Me' and then eventually led into 'Diplomatic Immunity' 1 & 2."

    Favorite Song(s) On The Album:

    "I know everyone says 'Killa Cam' is their favorite track, but that's definitely my favorite. As I'm writing this, it's bumping in my headphones. Will always be a song you can revisit. If I had to pick a second track, I'd go with 'More Gangsta Music' with Juelz. It reminds me a lot of 'Dipset Anthem' beat wise. I'm also a big fan of Juelz, so when him and Cam are on a track together, I know it's going to be dope."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "'Killa Cam', 'More Gangsta Music' also happen to be my favorite beats on the album as well. Only reason I can say is because the beats are fire. Ha."

    Twitter
  • 3

    Young Lito

    Artist

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "'Purple Haze' is a classic hands down. Way too many hits on it, [DJ Funkmaster Flex] use to damn near play the whole album every night! Let's not forget about the skits!? 'I'ma chicken quack quack' and the O.T skit when u told shorty 'F--- Ya kids' (Laughs). Legendary. I was in 9th grade when that s--- dropped. Cam had n----s wearing the biggest earrings and T-shirts ever. You couldn't tell us we wasn't fly (Laughs)."

    Favorite Song(s) On The Album:

    "Favorite songs? Gotta be 'Girls,' 'Hey Lady,' 'Dipset Forever' 'Get Em girls' 'Soap Opera,' it's too many to name. 'Down & Out' and 'Killa Cam.' My nickname is 'Killa' so when they played that in the house parties I felt like a god. Oh, and 'More Reasons' and 'Shake' that's almost the whole album, f--- it."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "'Shake,' 'Down & Out' and 'Hey Lady.'"

    One Song You On The Album You Wish You Could've Been Featured On:

    "I wish I was on 'Shake' the song and beat was fire. And my bitch back then thought JR. Writer was da nicest on da planet so I would've bodied him lol."

    Twitter
  • 4

    Justin Tinsley

    Journalist (The Smoking Section)

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "It was funny watching people who hated Cam because of how he rhymed fall in love with the album because of the beats. And then listening to the album so much that they came to love Cam.

    It was like Dipset photosynthesis or something. Come in a hater and leave a believer.

    Favorite Song(s) From The Album:

    "Now we're pulling teeth. If I had pick my top three (in no particular order):

    1. 'Get 'Em Girls'-- Go to YouTube and watch the video. It's a lightweight and emotional experience. The fake Maury paternity skit which has since become one of the all-time great .gifs. The Dips rallying around Cam. Dame still near the peak of his powers, but little did we know at the time the end was near. Kanye [West] posted in Harlem almost like he belonged there. And who could forget one of the greatest opening monologues since Ben Franklin accidentally discovered electricity: 'I get the boosters boostin'/ I get computers putin'/ You get shot at? Call me/ I'll do the shooting.' Powerful.

    2. 'Dipset Forever' -- I miss those soulful Kanye beats something terrible.

    3. 'Family Ties' -- Easy choice here. I had a 1997 Mazda 626 in '04. This song damn near killed my speakers every time. I also remember convincing myself 40 Cal would make something of himself only to realize later he couldn't make a song. At least not enough to put together a full-length album worth listening to. For many Dips' fans, the song was an introduction to goon-in-residence Hell Rell, too.

    Oh, and Cam's 'D--- on her nose / Now she's cock-eyed' line remains one of my favorite Killa bars in his career because it's funny as hell to say out loud. Why Larry David and Cam haven't joined forces yet to form the funniest show on HBO yet is beyond me."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "'Killa Cam' if only because it sounds like a battle cry right before going to war. If they ever shot a sequel to 'Braveheart' and placed it Harlem, I would hope this is the beat that shows the soldiers marching down Lenox in slow motion."

    Twitter
  • 5

    BosNaud

    Credible Cultural Commentator

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "The gap between 'Come Home With Me' and 'Purple Haze' felt like an eternity. Cam held folks over crazily because the Dips (along with G-Unit & D-Block) had the mixtape scene on lock and damn near dropped something weekly. But on the flip side a lot of us mixtape heads and early Internets pretty much heard the album before it dropped via leaks, freestyles, etc. ‘Purple Haze’ unofficially marked an end of an era because this was Cam’s last Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam release before he jumped to Asylum. For me personally, ‘Purple Haze’ is the last true Cam’ron album."

    Favorite Song(s) On The Album:

    "It’s a three-way tie between 'More Gangsta Music,' 'Down & Out' and 'Get Em Girls.' The Heatmakerz bodied Sizzla’s ‘Simplicity’ sample for 'More Gangsta Music' and everyone did a great job of transferring the energy from the original 'Gangsta Music' to that song. Cam and Kanye have never made a wack record together. 'Down & Out' is straight heat that speaks for itself. 'Get Em Girl' is your quintessential street record that was blasting out of every car.

    I remember attending Long Island University at the time and Hot 97 having this joint on loop. The video was even legendary; young Kanye back when he only wore Polo, Kareem ‘Biggs’ Burke doing the Dame dance and Cam even gave us some comic relief with the fake Maury sketch with Zeke."

    Favorite Beat(s) On Album:

    "'The Dope Man' because first of all that Ohio Players sample is crazy! The same sample was used to on Kris Kross’ 'Jump,' NWA’s 'Dopeman' and a plethora of west coast classics. Secondly, I’m pretty sure that song was produced by Cousin Bang so need I say more? Finally, that was the same beat Jay lost his mind to on 'Fade To Black' when Kanye played it for him. We all know Kanye and Cousin Bang have history together dating back to when Kanye “yawned” his way out of beef at Harold’s."

    Twitter
  • 6

    Craig Jenkins

    Writer (Pitchfork, Complex, Etc)

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "There was something like a year of delays between the announcement of this album and the actual release of it, so technically my favorite memories of 'Purple Haze' were probably catching the leaks that sprung up along the way. When that 'Purple Haze' mixtape popped up around the roadside mixtape guys on 125th Street in Harlem it was on."

    Favorite Song(s) The Album:

    "I mess with 'Killa Cam' and 'Get 'Em Girls' the most because they're perfectly outrageous, what with the choirs and yodelers singing his name while he talks reckless trash underneath. That always struck me as hilarious. I probably still yell 'get em girl' at somebody once a week."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "Strong tie between 'Down and Out' and 'Dip-Set Forever' but more the latter than the former lately. Kanye stan. Can you tell? (Can we talk about why the toughest beat in these sessions is the 'Purple Haze' title track and how they neglected to even put it on the album? Still mad about that.)"

    Twitter
  • 7

    Beewirks

    Producer

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "I was away in college when this dropped. My freshman year actually and I pretty much championed Cam'ron at my school. I remember blasting 'Come Home With Me' to the point where people that lived on my floor asked me why I was such a Cam fan...when 'Purple Haze' came out I downloaded it at first.

    I remember it was one of the first albums that I basically downloaded before like copping a bootleg and then buying the CD after its release. I was amped and everyone gathered in my room to listen to that s--- from top to bottom. I'm talking about Pitt football players, basketball players and just regular hip-hop lovers. We just listened. They smoked (I don't smoke) and we drank and made a night of it. A lot of people came through the course of the night. It was pretty dope."

    Favorite Song And Beat On The Album:

    "My fave beat on there is 'More Reasons,' it's also my favorite song. At the he beginning with the chick singing the Earth, Wind & Fire song and he tells her to pipe down...that s--- is so real (Laughs).

    I would've loved to create the 'Reasons' track. I mean at the time it was perfect to me but maturing as a producer I see a few things I could change about the beat to make it that much more of a classic record.

    Twitter
  • 8

    Christian Castro

    Sony Music

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "'Purple Haze' came out towards the end of my first semester, freshmen year of college and I remember the summer leading into the school year I was worried whether I was really college material or how I would fit in because my grades had steadily declined every year of high school. I blame the girls.

    For whatever reason, I expected college to be filled with uptight head-always-in-a-book bores (nobody in my family had ever attended college before me). So in a way, it was very comforting to me that during the first semester every time I would walk into the cafeteria you would hear nothing but Dipset coming out of everybody's laptops and when 'Purple Haze' came out some students would even set up speakers during lunch. So when I think of 'Purple Haze' what I remember most clearly of that time was listening to the music in the cafeteria during my freshmen year and thinking to myself "OK, I think I'm going to fit in fine here."

    Favorite Song(s) On The Album And Why:

    "My favorite song on the album was 'Down And Out' Featuring Kanye West on the hook. This was Cam'ron at his finest, three verses, all filled with quotables. From the rhymes to the flow, he was on top of his game. Not only was he witty but Cam'ron always had a way of being really funny in his bars without being a joke or coming off corny."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album and Why:

    "My favorite beat on this album was 'More Gangsta Music' by the Heatmakerz. Looking back, I now realize they were behind a lot of my favorite records during Dipset's run. Heatmakerz definitely don't get enough credit. Just listening to this beat again, you really have to be an awful rapper to not sound great rhyming over this record."

    Twitter
  • 9

    Malcolm Gray

    Journalist (Killer Boombox & BostonDigi)

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "This album dropped in the heat of the Dipset movement. After all the drama with Roc-A-Fella, this was a statement album from Cam to let everybody know he could do it his way, with his own sound. I mean he even made JR Writer relevant for a little bit. That's pretty impressive."

    Favorite Song(s) From The Album:

    "'Down and Out' is Top Two [Best] Cam Songs ever. There's a story Cam told about how Kanye tried to play him and not give him beats that made it on to 'Come Home With Me.' So, Cam approached Kanye like 'What up with them beats you owe me?' -- and voila! -- 'Killa Cam,' 'Get Em Girls,' 'Family Ties,' 'Bubble Music.' All those jams were like center pieces to the Dip set sound. perfect music to play at a party, scoop shorty in your moms whip, or roll up to."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "Again, 'Down and Out.' Perfect sample for Cam. 'Hey Lady' is probably one of my favorite beats too cause at one college party I danced with this ambiguous shorty I was crushing on to that song. It didn't work out though. She had a man."

    Twitter
  • 10

    Kyle Harvey

    Music & Tech Editor (The Grio)

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "First time hearing ‘Get em Girls’ I was riding with my boys back in high school in my first car. We couldn’t believe how hard and epic the beat was. So epic, that I almost crashed the car. Fun times."

    Favorite Song(s) From The Album:

    "Tough to say, but 'Down N Out.' Kanye was just starting to rise as a producer/artist. Classic soul sample, a dope assist by the underrated Syleena Johnson and Cam had a new anthem."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "'Killa Cam.' The middle eastern voice repeating 'Killa Cam.' 'Nuff said."

    Twitter
  • 11

    Russ Bengston

    Journalist (Complex, Triangle Offense, Etc)

    Favorite Memory Involving The Album:

    "I feel like I got into 'Purple Haze' late for some reason, so anything I'd say would have come after the fact. But it's just the lyricism that still does it for me. At his peak, Cam rhymed like LeBron plays now, just so at ease and in command that he could do remarkable things lyrically without ever getting out of his flow. Even the occasional bad bar was still cool because of everything else around it."

    Favorite Song(s) From The Album:

    "'Leave Me Alone Pt. 2.' With Cam it's always about the wordplay -- like Kanye talked about on 'Last Call,' you could just put him on every song and save an album -- and the combination of him just floating over beats and flipping things so many different ways was just so good on 'Leave Me Alone.'

    Even if he called the Iceman "Michael Kuklinski" instead of Richard, it didn't even matter. "I wouldn't say I'm Nino with The Carter / I'm more like the plant in Little Shop Of Horrors / But I don't say 'Feed me Seymour' / I say, 'Feed me Dame, feed me Lyor.' Just the references packed into that line alone, it was heavy bragging with a light touch that just never stopped. Always rewind that track. And I actually always go back to the intro, too, with the 'baskin' and robbin' line about Miami."

    Favorite Beat(s) On The Album:

    "It's the simplest beats that worked best with Cam because like I said he just floated. The Kanye beat for 'Down and Out,' the Hill Street Blues rework on 'Harlem Streets' -- but for me the best is still that vocal sample that drives 'Killa Cam.' The Heatmakerz only had two beats on the record: that one and the intro -- and killed them both."

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