Books

Signed Copy of Shirt Kings: Pioneers of Hip Hop Fashion

Hardcover "Shirt Kings: Pioneers of Hip Hop Fashion

A trip down memory lane to when customization and art reigned supreme in New York City. Jamaica, Queens, New York in the mid 1980s. Rappers and hip hop fans came from all over the city to get their own customized T-shirt by The Mighty Shirt Kings. The style traveled all over the world through record covers, magazines and music videos and the Shirt Kings designs soon became synonymous with Hip Hop and the culture of making something out of nothing. Shirt Kings - Pioneers Of Hip Hop Fashion looks at the early days of urban fashion through the lens of the pioneering group of artists known as the Shirt Kings. By adapting the graffiti skills from the trains and spray cans to shirts and airbrush they created a new look for a new generation. Edwin PHADE Sacasa is a founding artist of the group and it is through his archives that we are transported to the 1980s in New York City where the fashion of the day was loud, colorful, and filled with cartoon imagery on clothes; but not just any cartoon imagery for the cartoons where urbanized. Mickey Mouse with a Fila suit, Casper the Friendly Ghost with gold teeth, Roger Rabbit with a flat top hair do and Pink Panther with gold chains and guns - it was the reinterpretation of American classics but with an urban and gangster lean. The Shirt Kings were the inventors of this style and everyone across the city was well aware and made there way to Jamaica, Queens to a small shopping mall known as the Coliseum where you could easily bump into the biggest names in Hip Hop of the day placing their orders. From DJ Red Alert to LL Cool J to Big Daddy Kane to Mike Tyson - they all had to have their Shirt Kings designs. Shirt Kings - Pioneers Of Hip Hop Fashion chronicles the art, the styles, and the people who where loyal supporters of the Shirt Kings style and takes us on a trip down memory lane to when customization and art reigned supreme in New York City.

Shirt Kings: Pioneers
 

Signed by photographer Jamel Shabazz

Hardcover "Back in the Days" photography by Jamel Shabazz

Back In The Days documents the emerging hip-hop scene from 1980-1989 - before it became what is today's multi-million-dollar multinational industry. Back in the days, gangs would battle not with guns, but by breakdancing. Back in the days, the streets - not corporate planning - set the standards for style. Back in the days, Jamel Shabazz was on the scene, photographing everyday people hangin' in Harlem, kickin' it in Queens, and cold chillin' in Brooklyn. Street styling with an attitude not seen in fashion for another twenty years to come, Shabazz's subjects strike poses that put supermodels to shame - showing off Kangol caps and Gazelle glasses, shell-top Adidas and suede Pumas with fat laces, shearling coats and leather jackets, gold rope chains, door-knocker earrings, name belts, boom boxes, and other designer finery. For anyone who wants to know what "keepin' it real" means, Back In the Days is the book of your dreams.

BACK IN THE DAYS
 

Signed by photographer Jamel Shabazz

Hardcover "A Time Before Crack" photography by Jamel Shabazz

“Deeply unpretentious and undistracted by the trendy new aesthetics or technologies, Mr. Shabazz is the best kind of photojournalist: one driven simply by curiosity about other human beings.”
—Ken Johnson, The New York Times

Once upon a time before crack, inner city communities were blighted by poverty and unemployment—but not by the drug wars that tore families apart, destroying lives with needless violence and mindless addiction. Once upon a time before crack, pride and style were as inseparable as a beatbox and mixtape, or as a pair of shoes and matching purse. Once upon a time before crack, Jamel Shabazz was on the scene, working the streets of New York City, capturing the faces and places of an era that have long since disappeared.

Best known as Hip Hop’s finest fashion photographer for his blockbuster best-selling monograph, Back in the Days (powerHouse Books, 2001), Shabazz revisited his archive and unearthed an extraordinary collection of never-before-published documentary photographs collected for his third powerHouse Books release, A Time Before Crack, a visual diary of the streets of New York City from the mid-seventies to the mid-eighties, Shabazz’s distinctive photographs reveal the families, the poses, and the players who made this age extraordinary.

A TIME BEFORE CRACK
 

Signed by photographer Jamel Shabazz

Hardcover "Seconds of My Life" photography by Jamel Shabazz

At age nine, Jamel Shabazz was introduced to photography by his father, who kept a signed copy of Leonard Freed’s Black in White America on the family’s coffee table. Intrigued by Freed’s provocative images of both Southern and urban life, Shabazz knew then it was his calling to document his community and the people who gave it life.

Photography has given Shabazz a sense of purpose, allowing him to connect with the people he encounters on a daily basis. By connecting with his subjects, complimenting their style, and recognizing their potential—and then in turn publishing these images for the world at large to celebrate—in a small but meaningful way Shabazz has been able to counteract the damage society can wreak on self-esteem.

Seconds of My Life, Shabazz’s fourth powerHouse book, delves deeply into the artist’s archives, going back over 25 years and spanning the globe in its representation of human life. Whether in the hills of Jamaica or the shantytowns of Brazil, among the immigrants of France or the Buddhist monks of Bangkok, Shabazz seeks out strong personalities from all races, ethnicities, nationalities, genders, sexualities, and class backgrounds. Shabazz appreciates the poise and confidence of people in all their luminous variety.

Featuring photographs of Dave Chappelle, GrandMaster Flash, The Roots, Sweet Back, Big Daddy Kane, Public Enemy, Kanye West, Common, Mos Def, Russell Simmons, Jill Scott, Roy Ayers, Pete Rock, Jacob the Jeweler, and Grover Washington, Jr., famed fraternities Alpha Kappa Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi, Delta Sigma Theta, and Zeta Phi Beta, members of the Nation of Islam, Freemasons, Shriners, Bloods, Crips, cops, and city workers, as well as parades and anti-war protests, Seconds of My Life is an unstoppable tour de force.

SECONDS OF MY LIFE
 

Signed by artist Justin Bua

Hardcover - "The Legends of Hip Hop" by Justin Bua

Sweeping in its scope, The Legends of Hip Hop is an intimate look at the visionaries, the movers and the shakers, and the pioneers who have helped shape the world of hip hop.

Groundbreaking artist Justin Bua profiles and paints fifty key figures, including everyone from Afrika Bambaataa and Grandmaster Flash to President Obama and Jay-Z, providing a portrait of each legend in a style reminiscent of the great masters. The artwork is accompanied by an engaging autobiographical narrative that contextualizes the impact each icon has had on Bua’s personal life and on the hip-hop culture at large. With a foreword by Chuck D, this landmark volume is more than a celebration of hip hop; it is the definitive word on the subject as told by Bua, one of hip hop’s leading artists and a legend in his own right.

 

THE LEGENDS OF HIP HOP