Prior to this post, I had this CD in my ride for the last day or so. I kept thinking to myself, "I can't wait until I get to the 1997 Hip Hop Nostalgia sessions to talk about this album, I gotta do this now! Lol. And here we are! Loyal reader, I have to tell you up front that this album for me (like MANY others) is simply loaded with nostalgia, which is of course one of the main reasons why this album still holds up for me today after 17 years (20 years now, lol). Before I get to the album, allow me to share a story. I may show my age just a little bit, but it's all good, lol! (I never have problems showing my age, lol. As of this post, I'm 32 and proud of it.)
Although I can't recall which month, it was the early part of 1997 when I first saw the "Luchini" video on Rap City. Not only was the video very good, but the way it ended with a sample of "Swing" really left a good impression on me. Then in June of '97, again on Rap City, I saw the "Good Times" inspired video "Black Nostaljack", which was also very good. There was another sample, this time in the form of "Krystal Karrington", and it was after that video I became sold on Camp Lo. I had to cop this album! So on Saturday, June 28th, three days after my birthday (and the same night that Tyson and Holyfield had that infamous rematch which saw Tyson bite his ear, smh+lol, and I watched it too), my great aunt Barbara took me to a local spot, "Crockett's Records Tapes & CDs", and along with Wu-Tang's "Wu-Tang Forever", I finally bought this album! $30.00 well spent and I was happy as hell!!!!! I still own that same CD and it plays well to this day. Even though this likely won't be the end of my stories on this album, lol, I'm going to speak on Camp Lo, obviously, before I get to the album.
Geechie Suede and Sonny Cheeba initially made their debut on the "Great White Hype" soundtrack in 1996 with the smooth hit "Coolie High". I actually didn't hear this song until I bought their album. In addition to the style, grace, and flair they had on the mic, these brothers were really influenced by the 70s decade, as evident with the album title (taken as a homage to Bill Cosby and Sidney Poitier's classic film of the same title) and cover (taken as another homage to the "Good Times" TV sitcom, in this case the painting that appears at the end of the opening credits). I respected that a lot and it adds a true retro style, sound, and feel to the album. So without further delay, let's go back to 1997 with the debut from Camp Lo!
(Sidenote: I think The Source magazine was the only publication at the time to review this album, giving it a low 3 mic rating. What I'm going to do is include some of the comments they made about a few of the songs and compare them with my thoughts.)
Release date- January 28, 1997
1. Krystal Karrington
In an interview with The Source (issue #89, February 1997), they were asked what was with "weird" lines like "I get krystal karrington, ice rock gritty/Carlito influenced heat flashes.....". Geechie responded by saying "that's just us trying to be the flyest MCs", and he was right. With this being the obvious opener, lol, it was the first song I heard after I took the plastic off the CD. I remember going crazy when the beat dropped and it always takes me back to that moment in time. One of the dopest openers ever. 5 out of 5
2. Luchini AKA This Is It
That one line sums up this CLASSIC perfectly. It's all about the positive lusting after the lavish life of riches and this song captures all of that. I love the way Geechie starts this one when the beat drops, coming off smoothly dope. You can also tell he and Sonny had the time of their lives when making this video. Classic material. 5 out of 5
This is not boring and it doesn't have any type of UMC's vibe in my view. It's another fast paced song which saw Sonny going in just a little, in true Camp Lo fashion. 4 out of 5