How Friendship and Business do not mix
When Camron came on to the scene in 1998 as a protegé of Mase. Things got off to a sour note, Cam was upset that Mase didn’t show up to the video for his single Horse and Carriage which would have gotten Cam in further into the mainstream. Mase demanded close to 30 grand for an appearance, Un Entertainment refused and you can hear Mase’s voice on the hook but he’s nowhere to be found. This caused a rift and Cam held this grudge for years against Mase.
Not satisfied with the feedback of his debut album, Cam rebounded in 2000 and decided to put out a more street like album that fans of “Killa Cam” would love. Sports, Drugs, Entertainment was possibly one of the hardest records to drop that year and he also made it so he can put his crew The Diplomats on which consisted at the time of Freaky Zeaky, Jim Jones, and Juelz Santana, and Hell Rell.
After leaving Columbia records due to what he felt was poor promotion. Camron took his hungry crew under his wing and started in the mixtape market to give themselves an identity. He continued to push his crew by featuring them on his projects and giving them shine on his first single off his Rocafella debut titled Oh Boy which shined the light on Juelz Santana and gave him the big break he needed. With Camron’s Rocafella Debut titled Come Home with Me a success, Cam continued to use the Rocafella platform as an opportunity to further get his name out there. Movie Projects, Cologne deals, and an opportunity to debut his group the Diplomats on the Rocafella plateau were all on the plate and it seemed that the hard grind paid off.
Success and turmoil
Over the years from 2003-2006. The Diplomat’s had the Harlem street circuit on lockdown. Between Cam continuing to put out albums such as Purple Haze and the Diplomats Volume II Projects along with using those projects to launch his artists careers. They seemed to be neck and neck with G-Unit and D-Block who were also dominating the street market with their brand of mixtapes as well. People could already sense the competition along with the subliminal records thrown within all 3 camps so it was only a matter of time before a possible clash between any of the 3 were gonna happen. But in the meantime Rivalries with Nas, Mase JayZ and the Rocafella camp kept the Diplomats occupied and G-Unit and D-Block ended up clashing first.
Jim Jones chased out of Pittsburgh
There were also situations involving the group where there were circumstances where their street cred was damaged. Freaky Zeaky and Camron got shot on different occasions. Juelz got his jewelry snatched from him at the Puerto Rican day Parade, Max B whom was a contributor to Jim Jones’ Byrd Gang ended up getting locked up for attempted murder charges. Add the fact that Camron getting punched in the face by Tru Life , Jim Jones getting robbed constantly by The Rider click and the footage of the Rucker which showed the Diplomats being ran out of Harlem by Junior Mafia. But despite this, The hits came on coming and 2006 Jim Jones would hit his peak as Ballin would be the #1 hit in the country and crossed the Diplomats brand over into the mainstream.
Freaky Zeaky shot
50 Vs Camron
One day on February 1st 2007 50 felt like going into beef mode and started taking swipes at Koch Records. 50 been having issues for Koch records and with him being “Curtis Interscope Jackson” at the time, He started feeling himself and decided to take it to the next level by actually calling up Allan Grunblat, The owner of Koch Records and demanding that he put Camron on the phone. Camron obviously felt offended by 50’s words called him on Hot 97 and just like that, A new battle was brewing and it became official. Cam and 50 were bout to clash, They both are battled tested and they both could clown on the mic so it was about to be entertaining
Both 50 and Cam fired diss records at each other but the main story wasn’t the clash between 50 and Camron. It was the shocking appearance that Jim Jones, Camron’s best friend and CEO of Diplomats records made a shocking appearance on Rap City by EMBRACING 50 cent and G Unit thus pulling a Hulk Hogan from 1996. This move here proved not only disloyalty on behalf of Jones for actually hanging with the person thats at odds with his friend but also spelled the end of the Diplomats as we knew as a movement. Juelz Santana would soon join up with Jim Jones and start making appearances with 50 Cent.
The moment Jones came through the door on Rap City killed the Diplomats credibility. Camron all of a sudden went awol claiming it was gonna be a hot summer only to not be seen for other two years. Jim Jones status as a snake and disloyal cat started to continue surface due to his fallout with Max B and Byrd Gang. Juelz Santana started Skull Gang but it seemed to not have kicked off like he had hoped for. Hell Rell and JR Writer faded into non-existence. It seemed like the movement was finished. Even though the Dips post AWOL Camron saw success with the Pop Champagne track, It wasn’t what their base really was feeling.
There had been talks of a Diplomats reunion for throughout 2009 and it became official in 2010 when they released their first start-up single Salute which while was a good song didn’t make the splash that they had hoped for. Knowing that his Ballin money dried up and his reputation becoming more dirtier, Jim Jones knew he had to get back in the limelight again. His career took a downward spiral after his fallout with Max B who was a heavy contributor to his sound, his style, and swagger. Juelz was still struggling to get a Def Jam release on the star-studded roster so they did the next smart thing and reach out to Camron who himself after being missing for a year in a half started fresh with a new protegé named Vado and released 2 fire mixtapes titled Boss of all Bosses and Slime Flu.
Even though the Diplomats have officially reunited, The reunion doesn’t feel as authentic as the tracks that they have released havent been that spectacular. Perhaps it’s because they have been separate for so long that it takes them a while to get that chemistry back. They may be on camera together and it seems that everything is cool now but it’s never gonna be as the same as it was back in 03-04.