Rappers get attention for slick lyrics and confident attitude, but those extremely business minded know how to turn popularity into multi-industry dollars. A number of rappers top the music charts as well as make headlines in the fashion world.
Personalities like Jay-Z and Lil Wayne, known for rapping, also have hands in clothing and scent lines. Look at top rappers and singers who also speak ‘fashionista.’
Lil Wayne, known for his Young Money rap production label, features noticeable stars like Nicki Minaj in videos, but what fans grow more aware about these days is his Trukfit fashion label. In an MTV interview, Wayne mentions the name comes from the tales of lower-income residents gaining access to high-end label brands via the back of trucks featuring (perhaps stolen) such items. Those ‘hip’ to the heists would notice the difference between store-bought outfits and those bought from the back of trucks, or ‘truck fits.’
Damon Dash and Jay-Z started Rocawear in the 90s. Its success paved the way for other rappers to dabble in fashion as well as other areas of art and expression including film. The ‘lifestyle’ clothing targets anyone that wants to feel comfortable in style. Jay’s popularity and connection to the brand, broadcasted on records, magazines, and radio stations helps fuel it’s tenacity, and investors who want to attach his name to just about any service or product.
A King of Oneself or AKOO is T.I.’s fashion label. The angle is urban yet upscale. As an example of making the mistake of labeling ‘streetwear’ or those who advocate the duds, Larry King, of all people, has been spotted sporting A.I. brand accessories! Get your own street footwear, clothes and accessories online at Black Sheep Store.
It’s hard to place a finger on what variety of artist Snoop is (or the other half of his name for that matter.) Snoop’s the President of Pimp Clothing and Sunglasses. But, his venture in business does not stop at fashion. He’s backed AOL, Colt .45 alcoholic beverages, hot dogs (You guessed it – Snoop Dogs) and other business endeavors.
Mr. Williams is associated with The Billionaire Boys Club and Ice Cream. The lines offer clothing and accessories for men. Products, including sneakers, are limited, prestigious, and highly sought, creating a mystique around the rapper’s brand name and subsequent productions.
Kanye named DW after his late mother. “Mr. Kardashian” likes to feature a lot of beige, black and fur in his fashion line productions for women. Word is the line may be breaking up but it doesn’t mean Kanye will stop making other things besides hit songs.
House of Dereon is the brainchild of Beyonce, Jay Z’s better half. Perhaps not a ‘rapper,’ her style is associated with ‘streetwear’ and she has been featured in a number of rap songs. Beyonce’s mother was a tailor; the R&B singer’s talent does not fall far from family legacy. Like Gwen Stefani, another female singer who is not exactly a ‘rapper’ but associated to the ‘street’ scene, Beyonce’s style morphs with the times, and her ability to appeal to fans makes it easy to produce sought fashion lines.
Paul Harrison is studying fashion and clothing design. His main focus is streetwear and sportswear and his articles often appear on lifestyle and fashion sites.