Known by many to fall under the moniker of Harlem World, the nickname of an area filled with endless culture, inspiration and influence is a perfect fit due to it effortlessly being its own entity in comparison to notable boroughs within New York City. Aiming to continue a legacy carried on by names such as Pee Wee Kirkland, Ma$e, Cam’ron and an endless list of others, Harlem’s own A$AP Bari has managed to provide a creative vision for those who can relate to Harlem culture and its lifestyle via VLONE. Over time, VLONE’s popularity has skyrocketed thanks to a selection of limited releases of apparel and accessories in addition to spontaneous pop-ups, art exhibitions and spontaneous teasers. Now add to that the very limited release of the collaborative VLONE x Nike Air Force 1 Low. The silhouette was finally made avaible to the public via a special VLONE Pop-Up shop in Harlem, fittingly right next to Amy Ruth’s, as part of New York’s Fashion Week.
As you step foot into the VLONE x Nike pop-up, you’re engulfed into the essence of Harlem during New York City’s summer scene, despite remnants of a previous snowstorm gracing the edge of sidewalks and street corners. Collaborative VLONE x Nike Basketballs grace concrete-like displays while photos of notable Harlem locations, the A$AP Mob and much more grace the walls complemented by orange detailing. You’ll find the aforementioned summer aesthetic via the pop-up’s special basketball court which dons VLONE’s traditional colorblocking of black and orange — complemented by an orange chain-link fence as its surrounding and topped off with a black chain-link net to give off an unexplainable New York City sound each time a shot is taken and made.
While visiting the VLONE x Nike pop-up, we chatted with A$AP Mob member and VLONE co-founder A$AP Bari on Harlem’s impact to culture as a whole, favorite memories surrounding the Air Force 1 model, the future of VLONE and much more.
Today, ASAP Bari is finally opening the doors to his weekend-long VLONE x NikeLab pop-up in Harlem. The pop-up, located at 113 West 116th St., will carry various VLONE items, including the insanely hyped Air Force 1s, clothing, accessories (a headband, basketball, and pins), and white AF1s that will be customized by an artist on the spot.
We stopped by the pop-up yesterday for a media preview. By the time we left, there was already a line—hours before the pop-up even opens to the public. While we were there, we spoke to Bari about VLONE, whether or not he ever expected the brand to get this big, and if he’s planning a wider release for the special AF1s. Of course, we also had to ask the question on everyone’s mind: What’s up with the VLONE x Nike AF1 high he teased?
Last winter, the A$AP Mob dropped Cozy Tapes Vol. 1: Friends. In addition to cuts best fit for hustling, partying and lavish living, fans who listened were also treated to intimate interludes that featured the clique’s star rhymers A$AP Rocky, A$AP Ferg and friends talking about how “Cozy” they are.
“Yesterday,” Rocky says at one point in a bodega, “I came through with the Valentino shorts with the fu*king white and red pinstripes on them motherfuckers.” The Harlem rapper, who recently became the first black male face of Dior and also refers to himself as “That pretty motherfuc*er,” goes on to detail more of his outfit before punctuating it with “Too cozy.” Rocky’s buddies confirm his status with laughter and by echoing the term.
Billboard spoke with Trap Lord designer Darold “A$AP Ferg” Ferguson, Jr., who recently attended his first Paris Fashion Week with his pal Rocky, to explain what it takes to be cozy while walking us through his favorite cozy look from Fall 2017 Men’s shows and sharing his collaborative goals for the year.
A$AP Rocky tells Vogue who he would invite to his ultimate dinner party, what advice he wishes he could give to his teenage self, and why he thinks women do everything better, as he stars in Zalando’s spring/summer 2017 Remix Fashion campaign.
What is the one thing you wish you could tell your 16-year-old self?
Be patient, it will be pretty great later on in your life.
What is the most treasured item in your wardrobe?
I don’t have just one item in particular. I really love my Alexander Wang boots that he has made for me every other year.
Over time, VLONE has managed to gain a faithful cult following thanks to its creativity and collaborations alongside the likes of Virgil Abloh’s OFF-WHITE, as well as Nike. In the latest issue of French-based Dull magazine, VLONE’s own A$AP Bari announced the creative entity’s future plans, expressing that VLONE’s current state of popularity is only the beginning.
Check out a portion of the conversation with Bari below and read the interview in full in Dull‘s latest issue, available on shelves now.
Are you married to fashion? Will you always design clothes?
My whole thing is clothes, food, music. That’s my whole shit. Anything that I’d like to produce is either clothes, food or music.
I was always into food. Before I was into clothes, I was into food. When I was younger, you know, being from Harlem, it was music first, then food, and now clothes. That’s all we do. But, I was always into cooking, you know. My uncle taught me how to cook at a young age.
Could you see VLONE doing its own spin on food?
Yea. Hell yea. Most definitely. I’m trying to be on my Nigo shit. I gotta get a VLONE barbershop. A VLONE cafe, a VLONE parfait. VLONE everything.
Brittany Sky sits down with A$AP Twelvyy and A$AP Ant for the first installment in her new Boss Talk series. They shared their personal interests outside of music, their views on internet girls, and some of their most intimate thoughts about the late visionary A$AP Yams.
Never doubt the power of the Internet. For Playboi Carti, it changed his life. All 18 songs on his SoundCloud page have over one million plays, including “Broke Boi” and “Fetti,” which have collected over 13 million plays each. “I feel like niggas really be on my shit,” says the young rapper. “That’s why I’m picky about what I put on my SoundCloud. That’s why I’m taking time with my [first] mixtape. I‘m going crazy. If you look on my tracks, bro, it shows you my progression.”
Growing up in South Atlanta, the 21-year-old MC (born Jordan Carter) dabbled with hip-hop, but didn’t decide to take it seriously until his voice deepened while in his senior year at North Springs High School. Upon graduation, Carti moved to the Big Apple borough of The Bronx in order to focus more on music and change his scenery. Over the next eight months, he focused on recording and making relationships in hip-hop, especially with members of the A$AP Mob and sporadically put out a handful of songs to moderate success.
A$AP Nast, the rapper and 26-year-old cousin to Rocky, stands by a rack of clothing. He inspects the fabrics and fits with unusual precision and tries on a pair of ballooning Yohji Yamamoto pants. Nast’s love of fashion is emblematic of a movement in rap, one that the A$AP Mob collective has popularized and propagated. At this time, the job description of the hip hop star has ventured into areas previously unknown—from mentoring fans in his Instagram comments to preferring thrift shopping field trips over breakfast. Nast’s grunge-inspired music taps into the soul of ultimate teenage angst to create work that represents the hybridized magic that is the future of hip hop. And the collective that surrounds him has perfected the solitary art of this rewritten rule: loneliness is fun when you do it together.
Kevin Pires spoke to A$AP Nast on a rainy LA evening about what it means to be a rapper for the new millennium, the communal listening habits that define us, and the style that took him worldwide.
On the newest episode of GGN, Rocky and Snoop talk about music, fashion, the eras they most closely identify with, how beef gets blown out of proportion, being ridiculously high, and more. Get a taste of the tastemakers’ convo above and watch the full interview on Apple Music.
Imagine growing up in Harlem and Nike asking you to make your own pair of Air Force 1s or, as you’d call them, Uptowns. That’s exactly what ASAP Bari is dealing with right now, as his clothing brand, VLONE, is the most recent collaboration on the sneaker that’s approaching its 35th birthday.
The sneakers themselves are black with orange highlights, made from premium leather, and debuting at ComplexCon, which is going down right now in Long Beach, California. We had the opportunity to talk to Bari about what this project means to him and his neighborhood. Edison Chen, the Hong Kong entertainment mogul and co-founder of CLOT, was also able to provide insights on why the Air Force 1 remains a massive sneaker almost three and a half decades after they were first released.
It’s been a long time coming, but as promised A$AP Mob has officially released their studio album Cozy Tapes Vol. 1: Friends. The album’s cover clearly pays tribute to their late member A$AP Yams, while the tracks live up to the name “Friends” by not only featuring members of the Mob, but also a slew of artists they co-sign. There’s no shortage of up-and-coming rappers on the album as Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Yachty, Madeintyo and Playboi Carti all drop verses; while “Nasty’s World” serves as a refreshing track featuring Onyx, a group that helped pave the way for many of today’s hip-hop collectives – including A$AP Mob. Tyler, the Creator also has a noteworthy contribution on the final track of the album “Telephone Calls” with friend/tourmate A$AP Rocky.
Despite the Mob’s frontman A$AP Rocky being seemingly everywhere over the past year, he still manages to appease his fans by hopping on a list of the Cozy tracks. Few artists in hip-hop have been able to navigate different worlds with as much success as Rocky, who has managed to solidify spots in music, high fashion and film. Adding to the impressive list of accolades is his recent partnership with MTV, where he’s landed a major role as a creative for the network. All of these achievements are a testament to his star power and with no signs of letting up anytime soon, it’s clear that Flacko’s in the game for the long haul.
We caught up with A$AP Rocky at a private Cozy Tapes listening session held in Los Angeles to ask him about the new album, his creative work with MTV and his hectic lifestyle. Check out the full discussion with Rocky below as he almost slips up to reveal some major upcoming personal projects in the works.