Crown him now.
No matter who wins whatever award at tonight’s show, Kanye’s the king of the 2015 Grammys. Starting with “Only One” on January 1, Yeezus has made his presence felt for weeks continuously, a trend that continued into Saturday with his appearance at Roc Nation’s Pre-Grammy Brunch and him joining Big Sean at the House Of Blues performance. On a weekend where the world focuses on only the biggest stars in music, Kanye’s made himself the center of that universe.
And a large part of that focus has been centered around his latest endeavor – the Yeezy 750 Boost, his first shoe with adidas which made a surprise debut on Friday night.
Since I’ve been asked way too many times what my thoughts were on the shoes and the whole spectacle, here are a few thoughts that I jotted down while I still cared enough to discuss this stuff.
1. Anyone that was looking for Kanye to design the next Jordan, they were staring in the wrong direction the whole time. He never ascribed to be Tinker, Eric Avar or anyone along those lines. His inspiration comes from Karl Lagerfield and Raf Simmons types. Kanye’s whole steez is driven by fashion, which isn’t always utilitarian. It tends to be polarizing, which Kanye has already proven he’s not afraid to go left with his main hustle, music, so doing it with footwear isn’t a big surprise.
2. The Yeezy Boost isn’t necessarily meant for those of us whose days consist of dragging ass to class in sweats, making runs to Target or spend Friday nights in clubs that offer two-for-one drink specials. Again, think fashion, flashing lights, runways, large crowds. Consider all of the clothing Kanye wears – 70% of which most of us wouldn’t wear on a daily basis and that’s okay.
In fact, anyone whose sneaker-buying habits center around Jordan release dates most likely won’t be drawn to these. Those people can keep right on buying the mannequin at the local shop and be just fine. That’s not a diss and I’m not saying their my steez either since I don’t own leather joggers or suede t-shirts. Don’t get it twisted though because I could freak a pair. I’m nice like that.
The point is they may not be meant for the average sneakerhead. The Yeezy Boost looks to be more in the mold of his Louis Vuitton kicks than the stuff he did for Nike. The rumored retail is said to hover around the $350 mark, which, again, is in the designer price range moreso the athletic one.
Without out these two I don't know what I'd be doing. In a way I got lucky to have Kanye and Don C as friends and mentors. Anyone that knows them knows how monumental the shoes on each their feet are. And not just that they are shoes but the unique hooped they jumped thru to pull it off. One Adidas. One Nike/Jordan. Dropping at the same time in ©2015. The definition of kids dedicated to culture. The same 2 kids that masterminded College Dropout are back at it with product. I feel blessed. Waaaaaay up. I feel blessed.
3. I’m glad he’s being allowed to do chase his ideas and trying to turn them into tangible products, which he claims Nike wouldn’t let him to pursue (or wouldn’t pay him to do either, according to him). I remember talking shop with one of Don C’s close friends and business partners way back when their first partnership with Jordan came out. He told me something to the effect of “People don’t realize we’re all just kids from the Chi.” At the end of the day, that applies to Kanye as well. These aren’t super rich kids who grew up knowing they’d be afforded these opportunities. They made their way and, regardless of anything, I will always respect that.
4. Everyone asks what I really think of the shoes.
Off top, I love Boost and have loved it since adidas debuted the cushioning system. It’s so comfortable that I wish all my f*cking shoes had Boost, true story, because it’s without a doubt one of the best new things we’ve seen in sneakers in a while. As Retro said previously, the ’90s kid in me loves that ‘Ye utilized a forefoot strap, too. The materials look on point, but I’m unsure about what’s being used to for the structure of the upper.
Here, I’ll echo what a few friends have said in wishing the design did more to break the mold. A few of the elements feel like they were plucked from various models already on the market. It’s understood that design sometimes borrows from design, but I want to see more innovation.
5. Still, for everyone rushing to react to this one specific grey shoe, slow your roll and just wait. It’s already been established that he’s likely going to be doing more than one shoe, most likely adding in some androgynous clothing collections and I wouldn’t be surprised if he broke up a line of gear for toddlers. Let’s assume the Three Stripes put a lot of money down on a deal with ‘Ye so they’ll be doing their best to get a return on their investment. None of this is guaranteed and I have no insider info, but I have a hypothesis founded on everything we’ve heard since Kanye signed with the brand.
6. I’ve always thought Jay and Bey knew how to maximize their combined celeb status but Kanye and Kim are pretty crafty themselves. They wield a hold over social media that’s unrivaled. When adidas signed ‘Ye, they also indirectly snagged Kim’s co-sign and her massive Instagram and Twitter followings, which is another article for a later date. But look at how this worked out.
Kim cut her hair…and trended at the top of social media platforms for roughly two days.
‘Ye debuts his shoe and has all kinds of buzz swirling. Getty has the paparazzi snapping pics of feet for goodness sake.
They did all of this on Grammy weekend, which only serves to amplify their stories.
Hate it or love it, this is our celeb-obsessed world in 2015 and these two know how to play the game as good as any two stars out there.
Below, tons of shots of Kanye, Kim and the Yeezy Boost, which give a better look than anything we’ve seen of them thus far.