Tuesday, March 2, 2010

DJ Clark Kent at Nice Kicks

DJ Clark Kent is a legend in the music industry and in the sneaker world. I already posted once about his incredible background [here] but this past weekend I got to just sit and chill with Clark for 6 hours--that's right, I said 6 HOURS--talking about music, DJing, sneakers, friends, family, and life. After that much time talking about that much stuff, I'm gonna say something that might sound kinda silly at first:

DJ Clark Kent changed my life.

I know that sounds stupid--how can talking to a celebrity DJ/sneakerhead change your life, right? Lemme try to explain it. I expected that meeting Clark would be like meeting most celebrities. You know the drill: talk for a few minutes, chat cordially about some general b.s., and that's it, over and out. But people, that is NOTHING like what happened. NOTHING.

Clark is straight up just a regular dude. He is as approachable as anyone I've ever met. If you didn't KNOW he was a big deal, you'd never know it from how he acts. He's as real as you and me. No wait, fuck that; he's REALER than you and me because he's ALREADY MADE IT and yet he's still just a regular, normal guy. If I woulda made it big like that, would I be as straight as Clark Kent? I dunno, I seriously doubt it. I can't imagine how anyone can overcome celebrity like that, but somehow Clark has done exactly that.

So you see, his REALNESS is what changed me. I can only think, if a celebrity like DJ Clark Kent can be that real, how can I not be 100% authentic? How can I possibly ever front on anybody or anything ever again? What possible reason is there to be fake about anything?

All that leads me to this conclusion: HYPE = stupid fake shit.

If something is dope, it's dope because its designed well. If something is heat, it's heat because it's designed well. Nothing--not sneakers, not music, not clothing, nothing--is dope simply because hypebeasts claim its dope, or because it's got some artificial manufacturing limitations. That's not HEAT, that's playing the supply-and-demand game. That's just really good marketing, not HEAT.

For example...at one point, Clark told us why Nike Air Force 1 Bespokes cost $820 dollars. He said it's because people are out there buying sneakers from resellers for $1000+, which is stupid if you think about this: you're paying $1000+ to buy something limited, something that maybe only a few hundred other people have. But conversely, that means there's hundreds of other people that got the same thing in their closet that you got! How is THAT exclusive? BUT a Bespoke...if you buy a Bespoke, you're getting a 1-of-1. There's only 1; no one else can have that same shoe, ever. And if you can get that exclusivity for only $820 dollars, why would you ever pay MORE than that for something that hundreds of other people also already got too?

So here's what's changed about me:

#1 - I'm gonna keep it real 100% of the time. At work, at home, with friends, wherever. I'm gonna be me no matter who I'm around. I mean I was already mostly like that anyways, so this isn't a big change, but what little I did pull punches on? That shit is over. Keep it real, son.

#2 - I'm gonna avoid the HYPE. From now on, I'm only going to buy sneakers that I think are DOPE, that I think are HEAT because of what they look like, or how they appeal to my own personal sensibilities. Fuck the fake artificial limited quantity bullshit. If I like something and want to rock it, I'll cop. If not, then I won't.

#3 - I will still cop expensive sneakers, retail and aftermarket, but my top dollar will not exceed $820. Beyond that and I'll go make a Bespoke. That way I can design exactly what I want on the most iconic sneaker profile there is and get REAL exclusivity, 1-of-1 exclusivity.

#4 - I'm going to start actually BUYING the Nike iDs that I've been designing. I've made a ton of dope colorways that actually mean something to me, but I never buy any of them because I'm always spending my money on the latest "limited" sneakers that drop. Hell I am a designer in my professional life--I should be putting those skills to use on sneakers I create, not just buying so many "limited" retail releases that I can't afford my own designs.

#5 - I'm going to LASER my own custom designed iDs. I mean come on, I can buy a iD for under $150 and get it custom LASER'd with my own design for $225, so for under $375 I can own as many 1-of-1s as I can dream up. Now that is limited...and that is REAL HEAT.

I know you probably weren't trying to change anyone's lives in your trip down to Texas, but you did. Your positivity and realness is inspirational, brother.

PS - the dude in the pics with the sunglasses and BAPE hoodie is Joe LaPuma from Complex magazine, and he's is another 100% REAL dude who also is from NYC. Must be something about that city.

1 comment:

  1. ahhhHHHhhhh how fortunate of you!
    thanks for the insight..keep it coming :D


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