Many artists say "don't call it a comeback" even though we still do when they have been missing from the music scene for several years. The word 'comeback' can have a negative overtone to it when referring to music artists that feel they have remained relevant even during their extended absence. I personally just define the phrase as what it states...'coming back,' but to some degree I understand why many seasoned artists frown when it's used. The term 'comeback' has been used to describe an aging artist past his or her prime that is still trying to be relevant even when they are not, by releasing new music that barely touches the essence of their former self. I'm quite sure you can come up with several examples that fall into that definition without even thinking too hard? Believe it or not, most of these katz that you think have fallen off planet are on the grind everyday behind the scenes trying to create new music and business moves for themselves. With that being said...how many of you folks actually remember the rap duo Camp Lo? Group members Sonny Cheeba & Geechie Suede have always been one my favs from the hip-hop scene back in the day. With their own original style, flow and gift of gab, Camp Lo changed the rap game with early tracks like "Coolie High" and "Luchini (This Is It)," plus their 1997 debut album "Uptown Saturday Night" still gets added into my rotation from time to time. In 2002, they released their second album "Lets Do It Again," which didn't outshine their debut, but it was a solid release by many hip-hop standards. Outside of a couple guest appearances and mixtapes, Camp Lo has been missing in action for a few years.
Now, it's 2007 (10 years after their debut) and the duo is back with a new joint entitled "Black Hollywood" that hits the streets on July 24th! Judging by the tracks I've heard off the new album so far, Sonny and Geechie haven't lost a step when it comes to their unique style and infectious delivery. They are still blessing their fans with that Bronx hip-hop soul that they are known for, which is a good thing if you ask me! Oh, you didn't ask me? So, what playa...I told ya anyway! Actually, I commend Camp Lo for remaining true to their original rap style in 2007 by not trying to reinvent themselves for a new generation of fickle rap fans. That's pretty rare in these grim days of mainstream hip-hop. Year after year you see artists trying to conform to the newest music fad instead of continuing the formula that made them successful in the first place. I guess some may feel that remaining true to an original style can sometimes become stale and outdated? An artist should remain current with the ever changing music trends to actually remain relevant? Hmmm...To some degree I guess that has some validity as well. The reality is when it's all said and done the choice comes down to the individual artists themselves.
Here's the question: Take a chance on reinventing yourself trying to keep up with current (mostly wack) music fads and jeopardize losing your loyal fanbase, or stay truly grounded to your roots and possibly become stale, outdated and eventually irrelevant??
Here's my answer as a fan: No matter what career path an artist may take musically the reality is...if the finished product is great nobody cares, but if it's wack everybody cares!
With that being said, watch these classic videos:
Camp Lo - Luchini (This Is It)
Camp Lo - Black Nostaljack
Now, checkout the Camp Lo Myspace page for some new tracks: