When Afrika Bambaataa described the elements of Hip Hop – MCing, DJing, grafitti and breaking – he understood the fledgling culture had to be broad; creating its own legends and fashions as well as its music. Early aristocrats Run DMC perhaps summed this up best with their hit ‘My Adidas’, helping shape an identifiable uniform for performers and fans. This allowed people who took the style to be part of Hip Hop culture without needing any ability to rap, scratch or even tag.
Madina’s ‘Celebration of the Golden Era’ T-shirt lets us do just that. Wittily juxtaposing Chuck D’s proclamation that ‘most of my heroes don’t appear on no stamp’ with literal images of rap heroes on a set of stamps, it shows our comprehensive respect for classic artists as a mosaic, inviting a guess who game. Some are easy – Tupac, Dre – and some require a little more knowledge – Biz Markie and Big Pun for instance. All of the guys are the real deal and will mark you as the flyest cat on the block, yo.
‘Celebration of the Golden Era’ T-shirt is available in three colours from http://www.madina.co.uk/shop/ at £29.99.
Words by Adam Sutherland