Success Equals Sacrifice

Sometimes I wonder if why I’m on the computer so much is being understood. I’m trying to make as much time as possible for success. Success is something I feel I haven’t achieved yet. Yeah, I’ve done some pretty cool and interesting things with my life so far, but that doesn’t mean I’m definitely successful.

Debt free, moving at will and being able to help anyone around me with anything is my idea of success. I’m no where near there. At least not from my vantage point. So I got to keep working. That work put in will have to come with some sacrifice. All this writing is going to pay off. It’s going to pay off because I enjoy doing it for me and no one else. I put my all into it and I want to share it with anyone that would like to see and experience it. I will put in the time each day for as many hours possible until my goals are met. That’s how I know success is within reach even if I can’t see it.

It’s hard to sleep when you’re broke and unfulfilled. It’s difficult to please and appease others when you can’t do those same things for yourself. I’m trying to turn my entire life around in a year or less. I just want that to be understood more than anything while I put in the needed work to do that.

Everyday I hear a success story about how that success came with sacrifices. I don’t mind sacrifice. Better to be who I see than who I am currently.

Behind The Rhyme

I’ve spent my morning writing and removing. Writing another piece that I am actually saving for another book idea and deleting emails. Hundreds and overall thousands of emails. I ran a website called BehindTheRhyme.com. I say ran because I honestly haven’t logged into it and tried to do anything progressive for it since July or August. It was my hip-hop culture and conversation brand under the “media moniker” CamQuotes. It started rough, then got pretty cool then I plateaued. I wasn’t excited about doing it anymore. I love talking about hip-hop, but not so much creating for the website anymore.

As I looked at the landscape of the “hip-hop blog” game and those that have been successful and not so successful, it made me think. Perhaps this is truly the 5th and final year for this brand. Maybe it’s time to shut it down for good. The passion was wavering. The commitment was becoming suspect. It also didn’t feel like I was growing with the brand itself.

I felt so stagnant. Started feeling like my creative process wasn’t genuine. I started off not wanting it to be a regular music blog site and it wasn’t. However, many times over the last 2 years, I was trying to incorporate music somehow, someway for views. It also felt I was attempting to go out of my way to be different. That’s when I really knew it was time to take a break.

Looking back, the concept of Behind The Rhyme is still great. However, I think I may have ran my course with it. All of it. As I went through and saw old emails, request and inquiries, my first thought was, I don’t miss this at all. That’s sad considering this was my main outlet for 5 years. It’s not 5 years wasted cause I learned a lot and got a chance to me some very great people. It’s literally in the top 5 of longest working commitments I’ve had in my life. I’m in an evolving period right now. I want to show greater range and knowledge beyond hip-hop culture and my opinions on it. I want to talk about different things in different ways and share more of myself and more importantly who I’m becoming.

I’ll leave the site, the social accounts and the email live, just in case. You never know. I may get the itch to do it again and make it better than ever. I still love hip-hop. I listen, follow and live the culture daily. That won’t ever change. However, maybe me covering the culture as the ultimate fan is the way to go now instead of as an entity that is trying to prosper. I’ll let time reveal that.

Be Safe. Be Humble. Live Hip-Hop.

Good Job…

The Green Ribbon
Handed out cause you completed a task
Meaning nothing more than “Hey, I’m here”
Do you mind if I show up?
Not in for the fight
Nor for the feel of victory
The post of the fence
That’s no friend
And no enemy
The color that says go
But ask, Did you compete?
The achievement that make 2nd and 3rd place
Seem like even less of a feat

The Trophy
Meaning you were great today
The moment that you excelled
The moment of all praise
Does it truly measure the work?
Do they understand the sacrifice?
Do they see all the working days?
Do they care about the sleepless nights?

The Plaque
The mounted reminder
The fancy wooden picture
The hanging conversation piece
A measure of your last success
Much like the trophy

What do these things really mean?
Are they your source for success?
We all want appreciation
But do these things determine you’re the best?
Are you great without them?
Would you give your all and strive?
If the consolations prize
Is how you feel inside?

What about tomorrow?
The next time or in 10 years?
When someone else has that
Trophy or Plaque you revered?
Are you not great anymore?
Do you get back in the game?
Are you helping the next win?
Have you become that vain?

Whether we show up or show out
We all want something
But sometimes the things that are tangible
Truly mean nothing

Will you attend or contend?
Will you compete or complete?
How will you win beyond the day
And do you care who knows or sees?

Rap Superstars Need To Attack Trump Like Eminem

For years I’ve heard how Eminem doesn’t rap about anything and how his content is “just not for me”, but the reality is, Eminem has been very critical of White America and politicians since The Marshall Mathers LP. All this information is available on Google and on your favorite streaming service, if you want to hear it to a beat, so lets talk last night.

Eminem verbally ripping Donald Trump on BET sent me through a range of emotions. First emotion was joy cause I love hearing Eminem rap about anything. He’s still the greatest rhymer of words, ever. Dr Seuss had to step aside after “The Eminem Show”. Sorry. Second emotion was shock. Shock because even I expected more “Slim Shady-esque” bars in his cypher, but once he got rolling he kept it all venomous business. The third emotion was unfortunately disappointment.

My disappointment was for this reason. We need all the rap superstars of today to go in like that. We need the 90’s legends that are still putting out music to get on this too. The superstars will help the future of the culture get more light. YG and Nipsey Hussle should have had a diamond single with “Fuck Donald Trump”. Joey Bada$$ album “All Amerikkkan Badass” should be front runner for album of the year with 5 million sold/streamed because of his content reflecting the time we live in. T.I’s “US or Else” needed way more support and although dated, David Banner’s “The God Box” should be at least double platinum. If hip-hop is truly as mad as we look on social media about the world today, that’s where the culture should be shifting.

How is the culture and music that produced direct shots like “Motherf**k him and John Wayne” “F**k Bush” now resulting to “Agent Orange” as a way to take a stand? Sorry, that’s pathetic. No other rapper with access to a platform like Eminem has taken it upon themselves to speak on Donald Trump, society or the state of the world since inauguration day. I don’t mean speak like Twitter war. I don’t mean speak like yelling “Fuck Donald Trump” at a concert. I mean speak like songs that stay on topic. I mean rapping in depth like Eminem. The white rapper, who’s consistent knock from his critics is “he topics are dated” just ripped Donald Trump for everything he’s done from Campaign to the Nevada shooting in 4 minutes. Color has nothing to do with it overall, but here’s my issue. The black delegation will constantly criticize Eminem and Macklemore, but our black superstars remain recluse when we need to hear from them most. I don’t want them to run for office. I want them to rap!

We love to big up Kendrick, Cole, Kanye and say how “they saying something” but what have they directly said about society today? I say those names specifically because these are supposed to be the guys with “the classic albums”. These are the guys “speaking for us”. Even though time and time I’ve said, “They rapping they ass off, but what’s so “deep” about the content?”

As a fan of hip-hop I know that no rapper has to speak for me nor do I expect them to. However, I’m not going to sit here and not see the game for what it is. Hip-Hop is under attack. That means black culture is under attack. Today’s rapper is so scared to lose money, fans and make people upset that they now just don’t say anything or shoot subliminal shots. That’s not the hip-hop I grew up on. The hip-hop I grew up on wouldn’t give Donald Trump a nickname and half a bar or a disguised social media rant. I understand making a living. I understand the fear of losing it all and having a family to provide for. What I don’t understand is not using the principles that hip-hop culture was built on.

As a hip-hop community we are so quick to call every song and project classic and every artist with rhyming ability great when they aren’t even producing music that is reflecting the time we live in. Don’t get it confused. The content is out there. I’m saying it’s not there from the artist getting the most praise in the game for content right now.

I hope Eminem’s one man cypher gives hip-hop more courage. I’m dying to fall in love with hip-hop all over again. I also plan to do my part as a person in the culture. I’ve already started with my “Here’s What I Think About You…” piece on the composition section of this site. Fist Up Hip-Hop! We got work to do!

What Up, Big Camp!?

What Up, Big Camp!? A phrase and question that is synonymous with my presence when I touch down in my hometown, Freeport, Illinois. I got the name from a man I used to call my favorite uncle. I was told from the day I was born he gave me the nickname “Big Camp” and the family just rocked with it. “Let’s call him Big Camp!” was what he told my mom as I was fresh out the womb. Before I left the hospital I was branded with a nickname that is used to this day. How he came up with it I really don’t know, but it does combine my name first and last name in some way.

My whole McGee family knows me as Camp. Mom, Grandma, Aunties, cousins, everybody calls me “Camp”. It’s just the way it is. In Freeport, you either call me “Camp” or “Cameron”. None of my stage names in music or media have ever stuck back home, lol! I laugh cause I literally have had the hardest time branding myself under one name to be recognized by. I’m called “Killa Cam” more than I’ve been called CamQuotes, Shoohstopugh, The Captain or even Cam at home. It’s hilarious because apparently the branding I always needed, I was born with and just never used it outside of my hometown. I answer to the name “Camp”, so it’s not that I don’t like it. I just never went out of my way to use it or introduce myself as “Camp” to anyone. I remember coming home from College and my mom and I had a conversation on what I go by as far as name is concerned.

She said, “Well you’re a grown man now. I guess it’s no more “Camp”
I said, “I never really thought about it. My friends at school call me Cam”
She said, “So we dropping the P and it’s just Cam now?”
I said, “Whatever works. It doesn’t really matter to me.”

I’ve been thinking all day about going as “Big Camp” as I return to the wild world of radio. I think it’s only right I do. It’s my piece of Freeport that will always be with me. It’s a family name. It’s part of the story of growing up as me. Big Camp is uncommon, standing out and something anyone can say and sound cool. I’m also on a short list of people who would have “Big” in their name and actually be what many consider “Big”, ha! I’m sure I’ll figure it out by the time I get back on Social media. Let’s officially get back into Media first.