Kendrick Lamar, one of the most influential musicians of this generation, is known for his stature on social awareness and equality. Based in Compton, Kendrick Lamar (KL) uses his 'voice' to unite rival gangs in Los Angeles.
For more than 2 years, KL's partnership with Reebok is considered to be a pioneer of musicial-sneaker collaborations. The union between the two generated 3 symbolic sneakers, in form of the Ventilator, Classic Leather, and the Classic Leather "Perfect Split".
For the last quarter of 2016, the KL and Reebok tie-up gives birth to the fourth and final installment of the “Red and Blue” Capsule Collection.
Learn more about the past collaborations and the story of the Kendrick Lamar x Reebok Classic Leather Lux below.
When? July 18, 2015
Kendrick Lamar's love for Reebok is immortalized through his first collaborative sneaker, the Kendrick Lamar x Reebok Ventilator. Rendered in cream, the runner is contrasted with two colors as the left pair features red highlights for Bloods, while the right pair incorporates blue highlights for Crips. KL brandings can also be seen on the tongue label, together with his record label logo, TDE which stands for Top Dawg Entertainment.
A Sole Academy Exclusive, the intensity of the sneaker was visible during its release day at the original SA Katipunan branch.
Sneaker enthusiasts automatically acknowledged KL's vision to promote peace. 6 months after, Reebok launched the follow-up model in form of the Classic Leather.
Read more about JD here: http://www.saichi.ph/post/jd-cortez
When? January 16, 2016
KL and Reebok's "Neutral" model which utilized the Classic Leather silhouette was launched earlier this year. Featuring the same motif as the KL Ventilator, the Classic Leather holds a special place in Kendrick's heart, being his favorite model from Reebok.
Gaining momentum from the previous release, the anticipation for the SA Exclusive KL Classic Leather started on a high note. Released through a raffle at the BGC branch, the sneaker instantly sold out in less than no time.
Sophistication and significance were the key to its success, this formula continued for the third collaborative model.
When? July 9, 2016
The third sneaker from the Reebok x KL tier was designed in the most unique way, a full split seam running from heel to toe. Again, to signify peace, the sneaker had red and blue highlights to symbolize unity between the two Los Angeles rival gangs.
Fans of the collaboration were in for a treat as a teaser was shown at the highly-awaited SA U.P. Town Center branch. Weeks after, Reebok and Sole Academy exclusively released the third collaboration at the latest SA branch, Sole Academy Alabang Town Center, and at the online store for regional customers.
Being a full-size run starting from size 4 kids, the silhouette catered to all age brackets. Start 'em young!
To coincide with the release, a shirt by SA Essentials which pays tribute to Kendrick Lamar's advocacies was launched, named the SA EQUAL-Tee. Watch out for SA Essentials, this brand will be huge!
Similar to the first two models, the "Split Personality" was embraced for its message in and outside the sneaker community.
Read more about Liza here: www.saichi.ph/post/lastingmemories
When? November 26, 2016
Kendrick Lamar is about to release the final “Red and Blue” Capsule Collection model. Cementing his legacy with Reebok, the pair, clad in premium leather, acknowledges the Bloods and Crips in the most distinct and striking way. In a press release, Kendrick stated his growing message showcases reconciliation: "In Compton, we have a saying that ‘mixing Red and Blue makes Green.’ While ‘green’ is usually thought of in a monetary respect here, this shoe represents a new definition of ‘green’ - community growth. If we work together, we can break down barriers and prosper."
A hue to represent peace, olive green also connotes to growth and life.
The sneaker still features its traditional embossed "blue" and "red" text on the heel to emphasize Kendrick’s call for neutrality. To add to its classic look, the sneaker is finished of with a retro gum sole and brown leather highlights.
Last November 20, Kendrick Lamar debuted his latest sneaker during his American Music Awards (AMA) performance number. With this, the significance of the Kendrick Lamar x Reebok Classic Leather is forever cemented for being first seen at his hometown of Los Angeles.
As the fourth and final sneaker from the “Red and Blue” Capsule Collection, Kendrick stays true to his Compton core beliefs which he established since day one. Unity continues to ground the rapper with his artisan vision being shown through a modern-cultural process.
The Filipinos and Kendrick Lamar may be thousands of miles apart tomorrow during its global release, but together our combined passion for sneakers will be evident in small-yet-monumental ways.
Peace starts within us, it is time to show the world what we are capable of.
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