Hip-Hop

hot4Perhaps you are one of the billion people who have seen Drake recently doing his best free advertising for Moncler, the French outdoor brand?

We sell that very jacket, in three colors.

Shop: Drake’s jacket | all Moncler

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This is a good outfit with styling moves you should copy this fall: the long t-shirt layered underneath the shorter sweatshirt and jacket; the apparent socklessness; the rolled cuff, high enough to show a full commitment to rolled cuffs and not some lame half-measure.

But enough about the outfit. Let’s focus on the sweatshirt.

Designed by Japanese streetwear legend and DJ Nigo, this is a sweatshirt to listen to. Yes, listen. Because it’s printed with graphics ripped off from ’80s rap, made into adidas logos.

Which ’80s rap logos? Step into the old-school, below.

Shop: adidas/Nigo sweatshirt |  bomber jackets | Varvatos jeans | adidas Tubular Primeknit

This way for body rocking, electro-shocking beats and raps…

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Fresh Dressed is the first-ever documentary about the history of hip-hop fashion, out now in theaters all over the U.S. We recommend you see it. You will be entertained and educated, and perhaps inspired to decorate your jacket.

Energy and insights in Fresh Dressed come from music and fashion leaders including Kanye West, Pharrell Williams, Dapper Dan, André Leon Talley, Riccardo Tisci and the duo of Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osbourne from Public School.

But the overall product is excellent mostly because it was directed by Sacha Jenkins, a 20-years-deep veteran of journalism with Beat Downego trip and Mass Appeal magazines. Mainstream America remembers his The (White) Rapper Show on VH1Some Pratt Institute students call him their professor.

Now you will know him from his interview with the Nordstrom blogs.

Check our interview with Jenkins and the trailer for Fresh Dressed below. And if you’re already feeling TL;DR, check this audio clip from Jenkins about how hip-hop style relates to freedom:

 

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Images by Manuela Insixiengmay

We’re big Robert Glasper fans here at Nordstrom, Glasper being the Grammy-winning musician doing the most–the most, we tell you–to keep the sound of jazz piano fresh, relevant and connected to the youth.

He’s all over the rap album of the year, Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly. And further indicating his breadth, Glasper’s upcoming album on Blue Note Records, Covered, includes live versions of songs by Miles Davis, Jhené Aiko and Radiohead.

Glasper is not Kanye-famous, though Yeezy has joined Glasper on stage to kick some freestyle raps. Nor is he trying to be. We caught up with him while the 37-year-old artist was taking the biggest year in his career in stride, touring, being excellent.

Keep scrolling to read Glasper’s thoughts on where an uninitiated person should start with Miles’ albums, the courageousness of Kendrick Lamar, his top five emcees–and listen to him extemporaneously rap Tupac’s verse from Digital Underground’s “All Around the World.”

Shop: leather jackets

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Perhaps you’ve been following True Religion premium denim since the brand’s inception in the early 2000s in Manhattan Beach, CA. If so, you already know some designs: the name-making bootcut jean and maybe also the more recent jogger silhouettes–though the boot fit is definitely still in the building.

The brand is growing its audience now with new official spokespeople, basketball star Russell Westbrook and supermodel Joan Smalls. But let’s talk about unofficial spokespeople for a second.

Because there’s a good chance you learned about True Religion from rappers.

In the last decade and change, rappers have shouted out “Trues” 50 billion times in their lyrics, including heavyweights such as Kanye West, Nicki Minaj, 2 Chainz and Jim Jones.

To sate our curiosity about how and why this came to be, we sent David Drake, one of our favorite music journalists and rap experts, deep into the True Religion/rap music overlap.

This is his report.

–Andrew Matson

Shop: True Religion

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Required reading for those interested in the Venn diagram of style, culture and music: “Hooking Up” by Jon Caramanica in the New York Times’ T Magazine–an article about the influence of hip-hop on today’s newly fired-up menswear.

Click here to read the article.

SPOILER: Caramanica’s thesis is fashion runways used to influence the streets and now the streets influence the runways. The “direction of diffusion,” as he writes, has inverted. It’s also about men caring about fashion and being comfortable caring about fashion.

Below is a list of important hip-hop/menswear figures in the order Caramanica mentions them, which is more or less chronologically, with his excerpted characterizations.

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Tomorrow marks one year since the day rapper, musician, film director, human rights activist, and all-around hero Adam ‘MCA’ Yauch (above, right), of legendary hip-hop trio the Beastie Boys, passed away. So pour out some Pacifico this Cinco de Mayo weekend, and cue up Paul’s Boutique on your turntable. Here are a few Beastie Boys classics to get you started—a couple of which showcase MCA’s considerable skill on the bass guitar.

 
 

In other Beastie news, remaining members Mike D (Michael Diamond) and Ad-Rock (Adam Horovitz) have signed on to write/curate an experimental memoir of sorts. The New York Times describes the upcoming book as “in keeping with the group’s hypereclectic style…a pastiche of voices, images, irreverent humor and pop-culture reference points.” Look for it in fall 2015.

 
 

[Top photo by Ari Marcopoulos, via Pitchfork.com. Videos © Beastie Boys, Capitol Records and Grand Royal. Bottom photo via the internet. Individuals pictured do not endorse Nordstrom.]

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