SOHH Whatcha Think: Are Rap Clothing Lines Built To Last Or Get Money And Go? 3 Brands Time Has Forgotten [Click Here & Speak]

Thursday, Aug 4, 2011 12:58AM

Written by J. Bachelor

Once a rapper achieves a certain level of success, every major interview ends with a plug for something they'd like you to BOTL (Be On The Lookout) for. How many times have you heard this:

[Editor's Note: The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of]

"Yeah, so be on the lookout for my new movie."

"Oh. I got a cologne coming out. So definitely be on the lookout for that."

And of course ...

"We doin' big things over here. Be on the lookout for my clothing line. Fa sho."

Which isn't a bad thing. Fans are fickle so there's no guarantee music will always pay the bills. With clothing lines, though, rappers often take the auto-tune approach: Churn out a product so trendy it becomes unfashionable in no time.

You can pull a Polo out of your dad's closet, match it with a nice pair of jeans and rock out. Treat your Yankee fitted with care and you're good money for several years. But if you think your killin' the game in 2011 with a Platinum Fubu jersey and a fresh pair of P. Miller's think again. Which brings us to the question of the day: Are Hip Hop clothing lines designed to last or get the money and go?

Let's look at 3 Hip Hop personalities whose clothing lines you may have forgotten about:

Brand: AKOO

Artist: T.I.

T.I. - Paper Trail

From a distance, AKOO looked dope. Saw it in magazines. Saw it in videos. Never saw it in stores. Between heading Grand Hustle, making albums and dealing with court, T.I. found the time to launch a clothing line. Unfortunately, he never found the time to sell it outside of Atlanta.

Brand: Outkast Clothing

Artists: Andre 3000 and Big Boi


My college roommate had a long-sleeve Outkast shirt with the large, multi-colored 'O' logo smack dab and center. The first night he wore it, someone flung juice on it at a party. Sign? Possibly. Less than a year after this fashion line hit stores, the brand had been outcasted from the mall to TJ Maxx. Sign? Definitely.

Brand: CEO

Creator: Dame Dash

Dame Dash

Gotta give it to Dame. He isn't a rapper, but he probably thought, "So what, y'all aren't CEO's."  CEO should have been called Employee, as the brand, founded in 2006, was quickly given a pink slip and quietly told to leave the building.

From a crisp pair of Adidas to a fresh white T, style has always been a big part of rap culture. The consumers are there and designers are dying to share their creations with the world. What's lacking with many brands is longevity. And until that changes, these lines will continue to be here today, gone tomorrow.

SOHH Watcha Think -- Are Hip Hop clothing lines built to last or nothing more than a way to make a quick buck?

In other news, today is the birthday of President Barack Obama as well as late great Jazz trumpeter Louis Armstrong. So here's a hot new song by Big K.R.I.T and Yelawolf appropriately titled Happy Birthday.

[Editor's Note: The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of SOHH]

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