Editors’ Notes In the short window after the Notorious B.I.G.’s death and before Jay-Z’s ascent to superstardom, Cam’ron arrived on the scene with Confessions of Fire. He used the same slick R&B-oriented beats that had made Bad Boy’s stable of artists so successful, but his talent as a rapper was legitimate. He had the street awareness of Jay-Z and Biggie but was a more playful and slippery stylist than either. While others boasted about “spitting” their verses, Cam braided complex rhymes with the ease of a child inventing a game. Though simple on the surface, songs like “Horse & Carriage” conceal verbal schemes as intricate as an M.C. Escher drawing.

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