The Long, Strange Journey Of The Band T-Shirt

by MR Magazine Staff

Originally worn by music diehards to pledge allegiance to their rock idols, the band tee has undergone quite the journey in recent years, moving from the mosh pit to fast-fashion emporiums to, for the last 10 years or so, relative oblivion. Now it’s entering perhaps the most remarkable phase in its history: as a luxe designer must-have for the iPhone age. Once you could only pick up Ramones or Misfits merchandise from one of the bands’ sold-out, sweat-drenched gigs (or your pothead older brother). But then arrived a period of time, let’s say from about 1999-2007, when the band T-shirt came to represent the epitome of mall bro douchebaggery, seen almost exclusively on the torsos of battery-farmed bands and their faceless teenage followers. After enough embarrassing conversations in which they were asked to actually name a Sex Pistols song, adopters of the trend—both famous and otherwise—finally acquired the good sense to stop. And thus, the band tee seemed to return to the merch stand from which it came. Read more at Esquire.