Photos by Joshua Pelta-Heller
Celebrating its one year anniversary, it was only fitting that The Boom Room enlist the epitome of cool, Camp Lo, to headline the festivities along with the powerfully soulful Jaguar Wright. With their eclectic, flamboyant style, and graceful lyrical acrobatics, Sonny Cheeba and Geechi Suede are a throwback to effortless GQ smooth in an era where so many strive to show-off their ”swag”. After an energetic and tough act to follow by Philly’s own Ms. Jaguar, the Dynamo Duo from the BX did not disappoint; performing fan-favorites such as “Coolie High”, “Swing”, and their all-time anthem “Luchini” with a band that included Boom Room proprietor, Gary Dann, on drums. Later, in between some discussion of skinny clothes, which I was informed were formerly known as the “fitted man” look prior to their most recent resurgence, and memories of playing Altered Beast at the corner store, the Diamond Crooks sat down with two.one.five magazine to bring us up to speed.
G Suede: (aloud and emphatically) We should come through style, grace, elegance, sophistication!! (sits down)
two.one.five magazine: So Camp Lo, your first album, Uptown Saturday Night, is considered to be a classic by many. One of my favorite lines off that record is “in another millennium blow the dust off these jewels…” Do you feel that the line has resonated or stood the test of time? Do you notice younger generations getting into it? Do you feel as though you get the recognition you deserve for that being a classic album?
Cheeba: The thing about that though, is thinking about it being a classic after the fact. Goin in, we was only takin classic shit to add to what we was doin, and for them to receive it the same way they receivin it to this day, you know, we was onto something at that time. Cause there’s so much more beautiful shit that came on before Lo-wa. Pardon my French, though.
G Suede: I like so many beautiful things. I don’t know about more beautiful, but so many beautiful things. Cause umm…
Cheeba: (laughs) Cut it out man, cut it out. There’s forefathers and shit, like before muhfuckas…
G Suede: Yea before us, of course… We didn’t plan nothin, other than how we was gonna look, how we was gonna sound, and (in unison) what we was gonna rock over. That was the only plans that we had made entering the game. That was it.
Cheeba: Certain cats will hit us in the head like ‘yo, ya’ll still runnin around for these years and they still enjoyin what ya’ll started wit; the starter kit. Ya dig what I’m sayin? The starter kit. That’s a blessing in itself.
two.one.five: You got stuff like, in the back pocket? Still ridin on that Ft. Apache(mixtape)…?
Cheeba: There’s so many extensions of how muhfuckas walk…
two.one.five: Tell me this. This is something I need to know. How do ya “Get That Glow”?!
G Suede: Yo Big, extra, extra Big shouts out to Ski. You know Ski produced the first two Camp Lo records, Uptown Saturday Night, Let’s Do It Again, “Get That Glow” was just a way to express that, love that energy. Your glow is your energy.
Cheeba: Yea, your shine ‘n glow mode.
two.one.five: I haven’t heard from you guys in a while. I guess you been campin lo. That’s what it’s all about, right? You hit ‘em up every some odd years, but it’s always serious material; something to be considered by people who appreciate lyrics and stories…
Cheeba: …Herb is to get you high; like the lyrics I call herb. Not ‘cause I’m Cheeba, but the main thing is about it though, you don’t wanna have that reggie(regular) herb. Why listen to a muhfucka that’s doin some reggie shit? Nam’sayin? Once you start lookin and checkin things out, you understand that a lot of this shit is reggie. And the exotics, if you exotic they’ll understand and they’ll fuck wit you, na’mean?
two.one.five: So what’s the newest project for Camp Lo that people should check for?
Cheeba: It doesn’t have a name right now ‘cause there’s a lot of projects in the works. We have 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s with Pete Rock. We got a mixtape in the box and an album in the box already; in a blue box, B, a blue box, a Tiffany’s box nam’sayin. And we have Suede’s dolo project. We have Ski, the third member of Camp Lo. And that’s probably the first thing you’ll hear. There’s a song called “It’s Cold”. I don’t really wanna talk about it, but “It’s Cold”, rhyme wise, it’s different. The way we rhymin on that song; we haven’t rhymed like that on a song like that in a minute.
two.one.five: “Ski Beatz the President, ain’t nothin to vote about…”
Cheeba: Yea, yea, yea. And there’s different chapters of music that’s coming out. For me, it’d be beautiful for it to be ’13 to forever. I mean it’s all in the box though right now. Really recorded, though; already recorded.
two.one.five: Tell us more about Philly’s influence on your music.
G Suede: Steady B, serious ok? muthafuckin E.S.T., muthafuckin Funky Dividends out this bitch, muthafuckin Cool C (breaks into song ‘ooh ooh, you got it! The Glamorous Life!’) I mean c’mon, Philly been putting it down from the top of it, man. Philly’s a very special place and I still feel like it doesn’t get the credit that it deserves even though it’s launched some of the most amazing stars from film to music. It’s dope to be here. It’s always been love here for the Lo.
Shout out to muthafuckin Philly! Shout out to Jill Scott, The Roots, Questlove, Thought, you know what’s up already. Yo, Hezekiah, muthafuckin all the beautiful people here, Jaguar Wright. It’s just been a really fuckin dope night! We appreciate Philly. Philly’s always shown us love…Shout out to muthafuckin Cosmic Kev out this muthafucka yo! Yo nothing but love Philly. Geechi Suede, Sonny Cheeba, Camp Lo, 215!
All told, Camp Lo made The Boom Room’s first anniversary jam one to remember. And from the sound of it, The Geechi Grace and The Chiquita Kid have much more in store for us!