G-Eazy's slow but certain come-up commenced ten years ago, when he started producing and rapping in the Californian Bay Area petri dish that spawned Lil B the Based Gawd and the hyphy movement. His ascent came to a crescendo last year when his third studio album, These Things Happen, debuted at number three on the Billboard 200. Out of the booth, he has established himself as a bastion of experimental sartorial style, fusing golden era Americana sartorial style with modern streetwear. This often results in alphets consisting of black leather jackets up top and OG Jordans downstairs. Fresh off a cop of the Yeezy 750 BOOST, we had a chat with the man about his love of Jordans, and why neither his stunting shoe nor holy grail have a Jumpman logo.
What was the first sneaker you bought yourself?
The OG Jordan 15s.
The 14s were the first Jordan I ever got, the first pair of Jordans I ever owned as a kid, like, I got them for Christmas. I remember My parents never got me Jordans and that was the only pair they ever bought me. I was so excited, all the cool kids had Jordans but I could never afford them and this was the first time I ever had a pair. I remember by the time I got them for Christmas, that colourway had already been out a couple of months, so I here I was coming back to school – first day since Christmas, super excited – and all the kids were teasing me like, 'Naaah you're late,' and I hated it. I'd never loved a pair of sneakers like that. And the 15s I saved up and bought them with my own money.
What made the 15s special to you?
Well I mean its like anything else, once you're hooked on the culture and the hype, it's tough to let go.
I can relate, I still have an affinity for skate shoes I had as a kid
Ahh yeah. Skechers were fucking hype man. Nah, Skayt... Shoes.
Oh, all right. Ian Conner is making Sketchers cool but only ironically.
Who's Ian Connor?
He's like a stylist, taste maker, influencer...but it's like a high, high, high irony juxtaposition
It's totally normcore irony.
Back to the 15s, did you hold on to them?
Nah man I was like 12 years old
It might be obvious by now, but what is your go-to sneaker brand?
Jordans. Like 1s, 2s, 3s, 5s, 8s – but in classic OG colourways.
I've seen you in Breds?
Yeah I have a pair of the Banned 1s with crosses on the heels and premium leather.
Where'd you cop them?
I got them at Flight Club, yeah I paid the tax (laughs). But I always wanted them and when they came out I never got to snag a pair, a bunch of my friends did and I had always wanted them so as soon as I had the cash I went down to Flight Club and cashed out.
In LA. We were staying in LA recording the album and I think I had recently signed my deal and had money for the first time. Because it's different, you know, as a regular consumer it's like, you know a lot of the rare Jordans or Yeezys are out of anyone's price range – you can't afford those gems. And that was the first time I moved out of [being a regular consumer], or at least I thought I had, like I had money for the first time. I was like, you know what, I can afford my first pair of Breds ever and I'm gonna go get them.
How about beaters, do you have any?
Well those Banned 1s have turned into beaters, but the thing about that Jordan Bred colourway is that the more you wear them, the better they look. I've got some beat-up Jordan 3s that I've had for years. Black Cement 1s – that's another colourway that's timeless as fuck. Let me see, honestly, most of the time I'm either in an OG pair of Jordans or some $40 Vans. Like black Vans Authentics, like that's one of the most iconic, timeless sneaker silhouettes of all times – it goes with anything, it's simple. But that's also what I grew up with, Vans, they were big in the Bay Area, especially when The Pack came out with the song 'Vans', and it was a regional hit.
What condition are the Breds in now?
They're pretty whooped (laughs), but they've got character. I've been around the world in those, they're like my go-to tour shoes, I bring them on every tour. They've been on a bunch of stages in a bunch of states in a bunch of countries.
Is it circumstantial that they're your beater? Say, is it because your other shoes are much better now?
No, I love them sooo much. They're the perfect pair of shoes; they're the most classic colourway, the most classic silhouette, the most classic Jordan design of all time. I mean, in my opinion. It gets no better than the Bred Jordan 1, you know what I mean? The Royals are close. (lifts up toe) If I'm not bringing my Bred 1s, I'll bring these. They're a close second.
What is your show-stopper shoe?
Honestly, I have pair of green Saint Laurent Creepers with the buckle strap. I'd wear those, those are loud.
They are very nice shoes. How about the ladies, what type of shoe do you like to see girls in?
Air Forces! High-top Air Forces.
You don't think they're played out already?
Yeah, like if a girl can pull off an interesting solid colourway, like a red or a blue, it just pops with an all black outfit. I think Jordan 6s look good on girls, like a pair of Black Infrared sixes.
What is your holy grail shoe? What shoe has been unattainable for you so far?
I think the Yeezys are up there. Both the ones he did for Nike. I mean the new ones are awesome too, but if I had to pick a pair of Yeezys, I'd probably pick the first ones in black. I just remember wanting those so bad when they came out, and missing getting them, and how expensive they were at Flight Club or on eBay and just being out of my reach. I had a couple friends who had them, and I just wanted them so bad. Also I'd say the Yeezy 2s, in black with the pink inside. In terms of Jordans, like a holy grail of Jordans, it's tough to say; if it were to be 1s – it'd be the Banned 1s; if it were 3s – I'd say the Black Cement 3s; if it was 8s it would be the Aquas; if it was 5s, it would be the Grapes. The Grape 5s are up there in the Jordan hierarchy, for sure.
So you're not still romantic about them fifteens?
Nahh (laughs). In retrospect, there are definitely better looking pairs of Jordans that have been released. It was just, you know, that was it then. And that was when new Jordan models were still coming out, he'd just retired recently and Jordans were still coming out with new silhouettes that were not whatever the fuck they're making today.
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