Top Shelf: Porsche 911 "Fiona" by Singer

We’re on the heels of autumn, so we’ll be wearing heavier clothing and those trips on the highway with the top down will be kept to a minimum for at least another 7-8 months. Well, at least for those people out there who actually have convertibles. We can dream though. Right? And one of our favorites has a new iteration that we think would play rather nicely in those daydreaming moments we all tend to have, where we’re zipping up the coast in something fast and stylish, designed to perfection. Here’s today candidate for that. 

Singer Vehicle Design, the custom builder of Porsche 911 tributes, gives us a detailed look at the newly redone 911 “Fiona.”

The car comes with a classy navy blue paint job and of course boasts a multitude of modern updates and upgrades to both the interior and exterior of the car, including the engine, bodywork, brakes and more. Contrasting the dark blue outer shell, the interior has been given a gorgeous woven brown leather treatment. Every detail is just perfect on this car and it fuses the best of the past and the future into one.



Kicks Flow: J.Crew x ASICS GEL-Lyte III

One thing that’s made the sneaker game so awesome these past few years, is the collaboration factor. If you have two brands you love that get together to work on a shoe, you’re definitely going to be a few dollars short after they drop. We’ve seen so many great brands link up and release shoes, and they’re not stopping anytime soon. We keep finding so many cool ones, and we hope that we can help you in getting out there to get your hands on a few of them.

J.Crew has teamed up once again with ASICS on the GEL-Lyte III silhouette, and this time around the joint venture yields two contrasting colorways, both inspired by the rustic milieu of the American West. Common features include a suede build in smooth and perforated variations, along with leather form stripes and a translucent gum rubber outsole. 

Finished in tan/brown/black and white/grey/navy color schemes, the J.Crew x ASICS GEL-Lyte III is available now, at select J.Crew stores and jcrew.com.

Purposefully Fresh


Kicks Flow: hummel & Par5Milano - Marathona Par5

The AA crew plays enough poker for a few gambling teams combined. Strategy and timing, all you need to play a good hand. Maybe a little luck on the side wouldn’t hurt either. And if you’re a fan of poker, or just an everyday sneaker-head, you’ll probably enjoy these kicks too. 

hummel and Italian retailer Par5Milano have joined together to create a new sneaker which pays tribute to the ace playing card. Once representing the lowest value of the deck, the ace has developed into a symbol of power and strength and currently assumes the highest value out of the traditional 52 card deck. 

Par5Milano and hummel aimed to reflect this, along with a little Italian swagger, in their first collaboration. The result sees the classic Marathona silhouette recreated using premium materials, including high quality suede in shades of beige and green, and a gum sole. The custom box packaging doubles as an actual card game table, and inside of the box you’ll also find a deck of “Poker San Siro” cards, created and produced by Dal Negro.

The sneaker is available now at Par5 Milano stores and online. The collaboration will also be available at select retailers including Mita, Hanon, Overkill, Afew, Black Rainbow, Footpatrol and others.



Kicks Flow: Nike Flyknit Racer - All-Black

We tend to get way more views for certain things on here. Cool part about that is, it’s usually for something that we really like ourselves. So that shows we’re onto something with our personal taste. After recently getting a look at their limited edition “Indigo” colorway in celebration of the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Nike hit us with yet another option of the Flyknit Racer. This time around the Swoosh’s heralded Flyknit silhouette arrives in a predominantly black makeup. For those of you who drop by the blog often, you know the Flyknit Racer is probably our most-beloved shoe for the past year or so on here. So we’re more than happy to see this new look for it. 

The kicks boast a black/anthracite-colored upper, contrasted by a white midsole. To provide a touch of added flavor, the footbed in turn boasts eye-catching Volt coloration. We’re sold! These are available now at select Nike Sportswear outlets for $150, so run out and cop before they sell out. And we’re pretty sure this color way won’t last long, so don’t waste time. Buy these soon!


Suggestion Box: MC's...To Sign or Not To Sign?

Gather ‘round..

It’s 2016. We all know at least 153 people that say they rap now. And maybe a couple of them are half decent at it. I don’t want to come off pessimistically, but the reality of the situation is, most of those people won’t do much with the music. It’s just fact. Let’s not hold any punches here, there are just too many wack rappers out there and that don’t have anyone honest enough in their lives to tell them the truth. But let’s focus on the short few that may actually be able to have a nice little career with their music. 

There was a time in music, when you’d be able to just grab a record label’s address from the back of an album and run down to the office with your 4-5 best songs on a demo tape and play it right there on the spot. You could literally walk off of the street and get yourself a record contract. You may not sign for a millions or anything like that, but you’d be on your way to starting a budding career as an artist. So much has changed since the era that I grew up in and loved so much. And most of those changes have come via the Internet and what it offers. Record labels aren’t bringing in the money that they used to. Bootlegging and file sharing has seriously crushed sales in a way that’s just embarrassing for the recording industry and they still haven’t figured out a way to combat this. You don't see a lot of artists selling millions of albums anymore, like you did in the late 90’s. It’s so bad, they’re counting streams now, as if they’re physical sales. Labels are struggling to make the money they used to, so contracts have been restructured to make them as much money from the artist as possible. 

This is where the dreaded “360 deal” comes in. Long story short, every single dollar you make as an artist, gets chopped up a bit, with the label collecting on the back end. You get pennies. They basically own you. Now for some artists (who I won’t name here), this isn’t that bad of a deal because they’re still benefiting from the label’s promotion and ability to cover travel and expenses like recording and cost of production. But think about that, that money still has to be paid back at some point. If sales are down, and a majority of your artist income is being syphoned over to the label, when do you start seeing some real money for your work? Truth is, you may never. 

So shouldn’t newer artists start thinking differently in regard to how they want their careers to go? Adapt? But in a way that actually benefits them and not a company? I’d say so. With social media and so many sites that host music for artists, does anyone really need a record label to do the work for them anymore?

With ProTools, Logic Pro X and a ton of other software out there, artists can record right in their bedrooms if they really wanted to. Let’s say you’d rather not, and want the pros to handle your recording and mixing. There are tons of studios that will knock that out for you, for costs that are lower than ever. And this is easily due to them knowing that you could just do the same at home, if you wanted to be bothered with it. If you wanted to produce your own tracks and stayed away from blatant sampling, you could do that too now because production equipment and software is way more affordable than it used to be. But again, let’s say you don’t want to bother with production, there are plenty of producers online who will license beats to you for really low prices and allow you to even sell your music, most times with a set limit of how much they’re okay with you distributing. 

Social media provides an artist with a level of visibility we’ve never seen before, unless they were famous. I’m not saying you should spam people and beg them to listen to your music. Because they won’t. But social media allows you to give people who may be interested, access to your music, but also to you and what you have to say or promote. You’re doing all of your own work here, unless you have friends that would help, but the good news is, you don’t owe anyone. You're fully in charge of your own career. And have autonomy over something that important is beyond dope. The downside, you won’t have anyone overseeing your career and fronting you money for things like recording, travel and production costs. But these costs tend to be lower when you’re the one deciding when they’re necessary to pay and when they’re not. You can work at your own pace, but also make whatever kind of music you want without the need to get things approved or released without your permission. 

Why wouldn't an artist want a direct line to their supporters or following? If you chose to put your music on iTunes, or any site that sells music for artists, you wouldn’t have to worry about your pay being as fragmented as it would be, should you have signed with a major label. There will always be someone else to pay, but these would be people you’ve chosen to pay, not people you have to pay. If you started your own company, and sold your projects under your own umbrella, the feeling of being that free is something that should definitely inspire you to create more without the worry of meeting deadlines or figuring out how to recoup the debt you owe a parent company. 

All of this is being said, just to say that the system has changed. And before signing anything, you should always consider that this may be the best time to be an artist because you can take control of your own destiny without the need for going to outside companies to handle your career and its path. With enough hard work and fortitude, you can do everything they would for you, but with much more control and freedom. Independently. There’s nothing better than an empowered artist, and I think you owe it to yourself, to put matters in your own hands, rather than hoping that someone behind a desk sees something in you and wants to gamble and give you a shot. That shot may never come, no matter how talented you are. So why not give yourself the shot, and cut the middleman out of the equation? Something to think about.


Blog Layout Designed by pipdig