The most important style contributions of Offset, a third of Migos, are its efforts to help keep the Amiri brand alive. Along with a small group of professional rappers and athletes, he’s one of the last to resist the badly ripped and badly advised jeans of fashion’s most insipid and insufferable designer, Mike Amiri. But to let Offset himself tell it, he and he alone brought … Nike and Air Jordan.
He made this bold statement in a tweet on Monday, February 1, which sneakerheads quickly pounced on. “Trend maker !!” wrote Offset. “You weren’t wearing Jordan and Nike just over a year ago, it was all about the designer.” In a series of follow-up tweets, Offset made it clear that he was referring to his “workspace” and not “regular ppl” – an admittedly hilarious way of referring to his fellow rappers. But even this qualifier has little basis in reality.
For as popular as designer sneakers from luxury houses like Balenciaga, Gucci and Giuseppe maybe (the latter has never not out of date), Nikes and Jordans did not once fall in popularity during Migos’ tenure, neither among the civilian population nor among his peers. The solipsism displayed because Offset suddenly remembered that Jordans and Nikes are cool is confusing, even for a millionaire musician.
Can you believe this guy? – Offset’s claim is so breathless that it hardly deserves recognition, but the temptation to gather the widely available counter-evidence is too strong to deny. Two of the world’s biggest stars Travis Scott and Drake have made deals with Nike ever since Offset always wore flashy four-digit plus sneakers. And if you go down a level and browse the Instagram accounts of other unsigned rappers with the Swoosh, what you’ll see is a mirror of the kicks that we “regular ppl” have loved for the past few years.
Again, receipts are easier to find than the sneakers at the bottom of your rotation. Here is DaBaby wearing Air Jordan 11 Tonight’s show in October 2019 for her first appearance on national television. Here is Pop Smoke (RIP) wearing Air Jordan 10 camo in December of the same year. Here’s Lil Baby wearing Virgil Abloh’s Air Force 1s even earlier in the summer. And that’s just part of the new rap guard.
Offset’s claim is like without originality as is bold
Wale, Fabolous and Curren $ have been some of hip-hop’s most devoted sneakerheads throughout their careers, as has DJ Khaled. Kendrick Lamar has had a few of his own Nike sneakers, but without the same hype as Scott or Drake. Hell, even Kanye West, who left Nike for Adidas, still laments the fact that he can no longer wear Air Jordan in public. Looking for rappers who wear Nike and Jordan is like trying to find Sperrys in a frat house – you’d have to look at the ceiling not to find them.
Status symbols aren’t just about price – While Nike and Jordans can sell for a significantly cheaper price than luxury sneakers, they remain just as much, if not more, a status symbol. Scarcity is a major factor – and resale prices can climb well above what Louis Vuitton or Prada retail – but the fact that Nike spoke to culture long before luxury began to cash in on the market. streetwear and sneaker madness.
Back then, never being spotted in a pair of dirty kicks meant wealth. As KITH’s Ronnie Fieg recounts, Jay-Z used to come to David Z, a former New York institution, every week to buy a new pair of Timberland boots – an inexpensive purchase in itself but which would cost several thousand. of dollars. multiplied by 52. The Air Force 1, which still sells for just $ 90 today, was the other shoe Jay-Z is most associated with – and let’s not forget Nelly’s anthem. When the St. Louis rapper said he needed two pairs, or two purrrrrrr, he was referring to the old mantra “one for rock, one for stock”. The former is for immediate wear and tear, and when it gets too dirty, there is a clean replacement ready to go.
Offset seems unable to think outside of a binary, as a 2013 tweet sent to him this week put it: “$ 1,000 pair Giuseppe is no longer in the Jordans.” Since its existence, other rappers have been able to combine Js and luxury sneakers in their rotations. More accessible grails have suddenly and visibly started appearing on Offset’s Instagram page since mid-2019 – but a trend it hasn’t started.
A $ AP Rocky attempted to make a similar statement about his role in popularizing Air Force 1s last year, illustrating that Offset’s statement is as unoriginal as it is daring. Nike and its subsidiary Air Jordan are too big to fail, too ubiquitous to be “brought back” by one person, let alone at all. So we welcome Offset to the land of sneakerheads, but most of us never left.