Rap/Hip Hop is undoubtedly synonymous with fashion. Many of society’s clothing norms have been derived from this subculture. In recent years, Rap has even managed to impact the footwear scene with an array of shoes designed by rappers. Beyond music’s casual references to Jordan’s and other notable silhouettes, some artists have chosen to embark on solo footwear journeys. Here at Reshoevn8r we put together a record of 5 of the most iconic Rapper inspired sneakers to ever hit retailers.
SNEAKER: G-Unit G-6
ARTIST: 50 Cent/G-Unit
The Reebok G-Unit G-6 marked one of the first collaborations in sneaker history. Upon its release in 2003, sneakerheads and rap fans raided stores in an attempt to secure a pair. The G-Unit G-6 was comparable to a classic tennis shoe, specifically the Adidas Stan Smith. In retrospect 50 Cent’s signature sneaker was fairly corny. Nonetheless it’s a significant piece of Sneaker Culture and monumental in terms of bridging music and sneakers.
SNEAKER: Reebok S. Carter
50 Cent wasn’t the only Rapper to sign a multi-million dollar deal with Reebok back in 2003. Music icon, Jay-Z, inked an endorsement deal that would land him a signature sneaker and clothing line. This low top offering closely resembled the Gucci Tennis from the 1980’s. Tagged at $100 a piece, these kicks sold exceptionally well, leading to the production of the S. Carter II. Today a deadstock pair of these rapper sneakers could cost anywhere from $30-$150. Perhaps one day these will make a reappearance as retros.
ARTIST: Soulja Boy
Dallas-based clothing company Yums Shoes, agreed to sign rapper, Soulja Boy, to a multi-year sneaker and apparel contract. Looking back to 2007-2008, nearly everyone was focused on ways to “Turn their swag on.” This hit single alone was enough to distract consumers from the lack of quality in the brand’s products. Mimicking what Bathing Ape offered with their signature kicks, the brand intended to appeal to the same crowd. Soulja Boy made quite a fortune from his YUMS deal. Truthfully, we couldn't name one person who still wears them today.
SNEAKER: Golf Le Fleur
ARTIST: Tyler the Creator
Still pending a release date but already one of the most anticipated rapper sneakers of the year, Golf Le Fleur’s are up next. Translating to “flower boy”, these multicolored hybrids shadow both Vans and Bapes. Tyler the Creator debuted them at his last fashion show along with other related clothing items. Creating your own signature sneaker is quite the gamble. However, the 25 year old rapper has just the momentum to pull this off!
SNEAKER: Reebok Ice Cream
ARTIST: Pharrell Williams
Last but certainly not least is the Reebok Ice Cream. Released in limited quantities at high end boutiques worldwide, Pharrell Williams offered new flavors to the sneaker world. Materialistic items such as diamonds, beepers, or even cash were featured on the sneakers. During a time where most footwear lacked originality, Pharrell offered a splash of color unlike anything seen before. Similar to two other sneakers mentioned above, Reebok acted as the initial catalyst. Obtaining an original pair is a task much easier said than done. Cherish any leftover pairs of these shoes designed by rappers and be sure to rejuvenate them with RESHOEVN8R PRODUCTS!
PHOTO COURTESY: SC/Complex/Source/NK