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Cam'ron NY Times Article" It's Not Easy Being Pink" (Mentions Eminem amd Jay Z)

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  • Cam'ron NY Times Article" It's Not Easy Being Pink" (Mentions Eminem amd Jay Z)

    In a gated condominium community in Fort Lee, N.J., the dense shrubbery suggests a botanical garden more than a residential one. A lantern at the foot of each house's staircase is illuminated before sundown, and there is a late-model sport utility vehicle in nearly every drive. But there is only one hot-pink Range Rover. That is how you can tell the house of Cameron Giles.

    For the better part of two years, pink has been the dominant color in the life of Mr. Giles, a rapper who performs as Cam'ron. "When I did pink, I did it so I wouldn't be dressing like everybody else," he said. The color seemed guaranteed to set him apart in the world of hip-hop, where men's style tends to conform to notions of hypermasculinity.

    When Mr. Giles first wore pink, in the summer of 2002 in a video for "Hey Ma" and at music industry events, he thought he had found a one-of-a-kind look.

    A funny thing happened, though. Not long after "Hey Ma" began climbing the Top-40 charts, pink began to show up in the wardrobes of other urban young men. At last year's Puerto Rican Day Parade, pink clothing on men offered a counterpoint to the event's macho posturing. Other hip-hop figures like P. Diddy and Russell Simmons, and the R & B singer R. Kelly, wore pink. The color spread to the athletic wear worn by hip-hop fans. At a Champs sporting goods store in Midtown there are racks of pink clothing, caps and sneakers for men.

    "Cam was the first hard-core rapper to rock pink," said Emil Wilbekin, a former editor in chief of Vibe magazine, who is now an executive at the fashion house Marc Ecko. "What was interesting was how quickly the streets caught on." Sonya Magett, a stylist and photographer for the fashion magazine Suede, said that pink on men "was considered very strange in the urban market" when Mr. Giles began wearing it, but today it is common.

    Mr. Giles himself, however, said he is over the look. He wants to move on. "Me, personally, I haven't worn pink in about four or five months, just for the simple fact that everybody's wearing pink," he said the other day.

    He plans to adopt a new color, raising the possibility that he might start a new fad. The sartorial decisions of hip-hop stars strongly affect clothing trends. The fortunes of companies like Tommy Hilfiger and Timberland rose after they were embraced by rap stars, and labels like Sean John and Ecko stake everything on anticipating the urban market.

    Mr. Giles is cagey about his next big color, hoping to find a way to reap financial gains this time. That might include starting a clothing line of his own. "I'm not going to tell anybody until I patent it," he said of his post-pink color. "If this many people enjoy my style, and other people want to be fly in the same type of fashion I'm being fly in, then I might as well benefit off it."

    It is possible, though, to make an educated guess about Mr. Giles's secret. His next album, due in December, is called "Purple Haze." A limited-edition cap he designed last summer for the New Era Cap Company featured llic purple accents. One of his rap crews is called Purple City, a nod to a neighborhood in Harlem and a type of marijuana sold there. And in April, Mr. Giles, in partnership with a company called Harbrew Imports, introduced Sizzurp, a "purple punch liqueur" named for a codeine-laced concoction popular in the South.

    Mr. Giles, 28, was born and raised in Harlem, and he found fashion at an early age. "Just growing up in Harlem, it didn't matter what you had to do to get fresh, you would do it," he said. "I recall the Skate Key in the Bronx," he continued, referring to a roller disco popular in the 1980's. "You maybe had to go steal your mom's earrings and go pawn them, borrow $10 from four or five people, but when you got there, it looked like you had $8,000 in your pocket."

    In the mid-90's, he joined his first rap crew, Children of the Corn. Membership required clothes as impressive as one's rhymes — Sergio Tacchini track suits in particular. "I had to make sure I was on point around" the other rappers, Mr. Giles recalled. "They used to go all the way downtown to look for stuff nobody would have. Growing up with them was a privilege."

    Mr. Giles found stardom as a soloist in 1998 when his album "Confessions of Fire" went gold. A follow-up, "Come Home With Me," in 2002, went platinum and reached No. 2 on the Billboard charts. Although he has not had the mainstream popularity of P. Diddy or Jay-Z, he is Harlem's most prominent rapper, famous for a sort of avant-garde gangster rap that is dense with polysyllabic rhyme schemes and fashion references.

    In recent years hip-hop has cleaved into two fashion camps. Some artists are devotees of throwback jerseys, fitted baseball caps and crisp sneakers: a sort of prim thug look. Others have adopted dress shirts, called "button-ups," and the occasional blazer. But even before his foray into pink, Mr. Giles was striking out into new stylistic territory, developing an improvisational style that featured furs, alligator shoes and bandannas in bold prints.

    Mr. Giles credits his stylist, Monica Morrow, with introducing him to pink. "I came up with it," Ms. Morrow said, "but him putting it on made everyone fall in love with it."

    Pink had already begun its ascendance in women's fashion, after the all-black 1990's. There was a blush over the runways in the fall of 2002, and the color has since become a staple on women's clothing racks.

    But it was only recently that pink began to seep into designer men's wear as well. Bruce Pask, the style director of Cargo magazine, pointed to Rei Kawakubo's Comme des Garçons show in July for spring 2005, which featured head-to-toe pink outfits. Wearing such bright colors "isn't an emasculating thing anymore," Mr. Pask said. Mr. Wilbekin said he thought hip-hop's early embrace of pink had helped make it acceptable in the broader world of men's clothing.

    "What hip-hop did for pink is open up men to be O.K. with wearing color in general," he said. Ms. Magett, too, believes in a "trickle down effect" that hip-hop and Mr. Giles have had on the mainstream.

    Many hip-hop artists, including Jay-Z, Sean Combs and Nelly, have extended their personal brands into clothing lines. Mr. Giles, frustrated that he failed to benefit financially from the popularity of pink, hopes to do better with his next color. "If I would've just shaded the pink and called it Cam'ron Pink, how much cake we would have had?" he mused.

    One Wednesday night, after posing for the style magazine Flaunt ("Mad tight," is how he glumly described the Zegna shirts and Armani suits), Mr. Giles left the photo studio in Chelsea, only to stumble upon a party introducing Shop Etc., the new Hearst magalog, as it was winding down. Loading clothing bags into his Range Rover, he took one look at the event's color scheme — all pinks and purples — and said, with an uncharacteristic sigh, "They would have loved me in there."

    As if on cue, four young women, employees of the magazine, descended the stairs in impossible heels, carrying mesh goody bags the exact color of the Range Rover.

    "Ladies, I got a liquor coming out," Mr. Giles shouted in their direction as they headed down the street. "It's good! Let me give you a bottle."

    The appeal of a Sizzurp-fueled evening apparently held too much promise to resist, and a few minutes later, the women were piled in the Range Rover, heading off into the color-coordinated night.

  • #2
    i didnt read it all, too long
    WOO WOO WOO, You Know it!


    • #3
      It dosn't say eminem one time in that whole thing man. Are you blind or somthing? And cam'ron sucks, he whares pink cuz he's a flamming faggot that sucks dick.
      New old song of mine Dedicated


      • #4
        Originally posted by Dr Ho daddy SWO
        It DOESN'T* say eminem one time in that whole thing man. Are you blind or SOMETHING*? And cam'ron sucks, he WEARS* pink cuz he's a flamming faggot that sucks dick.
        He Most Likely Put Eminem In There To Get People To Read... And Pink Is Hot... ::
        If The Truth Is Told, The Youth Can Grow And Learn To Survive Until They Gain Control, Nobody Says You Have To Be Gangstas, Hoes, Read More, Learn More Change The Globe.


        • #5
          Personally i won't wear pink no matter who the fuck wears it.


          • #6
            wtf, ppl who wear pink dont wear it bcoz cam'ron did. i wish he'd stop claiming that. i dont wear it, i think its for fags but dont say u started a trend wen half the mother fuckers out there dont even know who cam'ron is since hes a washed up rapper who was never any good anyway


            • #7
              remix ur a fucktard for sayin no one knows who camron. in ny everyone knows cam n da dipset. every were u go ppl are bumpin jim jones album like crazy. think b4 u post next time. ONE
              Colombian Heart

              New York





              • #8
                great article


                • #9
                  ya'll faggots are stupid...cam'ron is one of the tightest lyricist's out there.....and pink is hot..i rock it..and im not a fag...fuck alll u gay ass fucks....to tell ya the truth i hate this fuckin' board...its too many haters and gay fucks here!

                  I Love Music.
                  King of the AVE, with the DEF FEMALE

                  Follow Me..twitter.com/im_classic
                  Jesus loves chainsaws, He'll cut you open something HOLY.
                  I hate a Yankee


                  • #10
                    yeh i didn't see shit about em


                    • #11
                      Cam'ron sucks.

                      Aside from hood rats and fellow high school students who think wearing pink is cool, you, the people who actually rock pink (and by that I mean from head to toe), look like ignorant idiots to most others ... deny it all you want, that's the truth.


                      • #12
                        Cam'Ron is a dope lyricist,any one who hates him must have some kinda of lame personal problem with him like this fool above me worrying about what color clothing he wears. I could give a shit about what colors he rock,long as he put out dope music imma keep my ears stuck to it not my eyes stuck to him


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Lazy Mikey
                          He Most Likely Put Eminem In There To Get People To Read... And Pink Is Hot... ::

                          i think black people can wear pink and get away with it cause they've been doing it for awhile, and just their style most of the time fits it . but seeing white guys where these pink preppy shirts, just urks me, cause they are all tight and gay looking. makes me wonder.
                          J + HOMIE

                          My Most Anticipated album



                          • #14
                            j-2da-son u're a fucking idiot, is NY the entire world?? people wear pink worldwide mother fucker and camron didnt start that fucking trend. first off, out of the few non-hip-hop-head mother fucekrs u can find that know cam'ron, out of them, ask how many of them knew that he rocked pink?? pink t-shirts existed way before camron started rapping and alot more people wearing them bcoz its in fucking fashion, not bcoz some washed up rapper decided to wear it


                            • #15
                              you idiots who hate on cam dont know shit....your fuckin computer hip hop heads who dont know dick...

                              the hood loves the dips.....and who ever says cam dont make any sense...YOU ARE FUCKING RETARDED....everything he says make sense....*****s need a hip hop dictionary...or they need to chill over here in harlem or ptown...get the fuck out of your room fuckin herbs...


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