Label: Roc-A-Fella Records, Diplomat Records, Def Jam Recordings
A$AP Yams: “First of all, for a good six months, I hated the motherfucker. I hated the motherfucker, cause I remember the day Diplomatic Immunity dropped, they had an in-store at I think a Power Records on 125th—it was some music shop on 125th. FYE or some shit. I literally skipped school, waited the whole fucking day, these motherfuckers ride by on top of the tour bus waving they arms like, ‘Yo, what’s up?!’ and just completely passed by. Everybody in line like, ‘Yo, so are they coming back? Are they chilling on the block right now? We just waited a fucking hour.’ Motherfuckers did not come back breh. I was broken on that shit for a good six months breh. I wouldn’t listen to the motherfuckers.
“But Diplomatic Immunity man, Dipset just influenced this middle America and culture in so many ways. A lot of people don’t realize that a lot of those trends that people were rocking with at the time was influenced by Dipset. You know what I’m saying? Motherfuckers wear True Religions like Jim Jones wasn’t wearing that shit like seven years ago. In the ‘We Fly High’ video I think—it’s been a long time—but they influenced everybody.
“From having earrings squared, to having grown men wear pink in public, and not being questioned about it at all, you know what I’m saying? Before, you wear a pink polo, and motherfuckers would be like, ‘Fuck out of here with that shit.’ Cam wore a pink polo, and they were like, ‘Okay, I see you. Get me the good pink tee, and the pink fitted to go with it.’
“There was gangs called Dipset! There was dudes and crews calling themselves Dipset, acting like they were affiliated through Cam’s second brother uncle’s father-in-law or some shit like that. They really thought like, and really wanted to be a part of that movement in anyway whatsoever. You see motherfuckers throwing up East Side. Not Young Money. You be like, ‘You Young Money?’ and motherfuckers be throwing shit up like, ‘Nah breh, that’s East Side.’ You feel me? Like what?
“Dipset, like c’mon, let’s keep it real now. Wayne didn’t really across over all crazy until he started fucking with Harlem. The True Religions with the schooled jewelry on and all that shit, like...
“Jim is one of my favorite rappers if I’m coming clean. Cause Jim, he knew he wasn’t the best rapper, but he had that drunken master flow, and then like he had the best verse on the album on ‘I’m Ready.’ They all had a certain quality and connection. Like Cam was really on his Ghostface Supreme Clientele shit. He be rapping but you didn’t know what the fuck he was rapping about, but it made sense though, and was entertaining as fuck. Like his fucking pop culture references was off the charts. ‘Coke only thing whiter dog is Brooke Shields.’ He was rapping, talking about Brooke Shields and fucking Dale Earnhardt and shit like that. What? That shit is crazy.
“Then you know Jim with his ad-libs. Jim’s ad-libs, it makes you get hyped. That shit made it so dope, you know what I’m saying?
“And Juelz, Juelz was off the fucking charts breh. ‘Yeah the whole Byrd gang's in here, like Kurt Cobain’ breh. Like what? You feel me? Then the beats, the beats made it more infectious, cause they kind of took Jay-Z’s blueprint with the soul samples, and took it to the next level, where they had the chipmunk soul samples, and it was just everybody was copying those beats at that time. Everybody wanted one. Man, The Heatmakers breh. Shout out to The Heatmakers. That’s all I’m going to say breh. Shout out to The Heatmakers.”