Rappers Tee Up Golf Collaborations

In recent years, rappers and their fashion and lifestyle labels have become increasingly involved in licensing and collaboration deals yielding collections of golf-influenced apparel, accessories, and footwear. In fact, in some cases, the artists’ lifestyle brands themselves are golf-related. Some examples from the last 12 months illustrate the accelerating trend:

  • Tyler, the Creator’s Golf Le Fleur label, which is his second golf-inspired lifestyle brand after Golf Wang, has been particularly active of late. The brand paired with Louis Vuitton for a menswear capsule inspired by aviation and golf, released last month; golf accessories were also part of the range, among other items. Additional partners in the last year have included Converse for the latest of several drops over time of boldly printed sneakers (March 2024); Pendleton for blankets (January 2024); Gold Toe for knit socks (December 2023); Lacoste for a second collection of t-shirts, sweater vests, varsity jackets, pleated pants, socks, and other apparel and accessories (October 2023); and Globe-Trotter for a second luggage drop (June 2023), among others.
  • DJ Khaled, a DJ and producer known for working with a variety of rap artists, and We The Best paired with PVH Corp’s Tommy Hilfiger brand in February of this year. The collection of reimagined golf polos for men, women, and children, in a 1990s color block style, is available at the We The Best shop in Miami and through the organization’s e-commerce site. We The Best is a charity founded by Khaled that supports nonprofits and individuals in underserved communities in becoming the best versions of themselves. DJ Khaled also introduced an Air Jordan 1 Low Golf shoe in June 2023.
  • Travis Scott and his Cactus Jack brand also partnered with Nike for an Air Jordan 1 Low Golf shoe, in October 2023. The $170 sneakers were available on Nike’s SNKRS platform and at select retailers. The color scheme included neutral olive, sail, light lemon twist, and black, with the Nike Swoosh, the Jordan Brand’s Jumpman Golf, and the Cactus Jack logos all printed prominently on the shoes. Scott and the Jordan Brand had done an earlier drop in May, but that was not a golf shoe.
  • Macklemore’s vintage-look Bogey Boys golf and lifestyle label, founded in February 2021, paired with Adidas in June 2023 for an apparel and footwear collection for men and women. Products included polos, a terry track suit, v-neck sweaters, strait-leg trousers, high-wasted skirts, t-shirts, and more, along with accessories such as a leather golf glove, travel bag, rope hat, and a spikeless MC80-model shoe. The limited-edition capsule, sold on Adidas’ and Bogey Boys’ e-commerce sites, was nostalgic and sporty, celebrating golf and tennis styles from the 1970s and 1980s and meant to be worn on and off the course.
  • Chief Keef and his Glo Gang brand—a lifestyle collection tied to the rapper’s Glo Gang record label—paired with Malbon Golf for a 44-piece capsule collection in March 2023. The extensive range included golf bags, hoodies, baseball caps, bucket hats, t-shirts, fleece crewnecks, puffer vests, and more. The pieces were brightly colored classic golf and streetwear styles.

Especially since the start of the pandemic, golf has been growing as a hobby, not just among traditional players and fans but among younger and more diverse demographic groups as well. At the same time, “golfcore,” sometimes described as a “dressier athleisure” look, has been a rising trend in the fashion industry. Like the collections discussed here, it features classic golf styles such as sweater vests, pleated pants and shorts, and polo and button up shirts, but in irreverent colors and fun patterns (e.g., all-over images of donuts or dogs) and with retro, streetwear, and skatewear influences.

Rap musicians including those mentioned above tend to fit well with these trends. This is not only due to their fashion sensibility but to the fact that many have had long associations with the sport of golf, being well-known fans and players and sometimes incorporating golf themes into their lyrics, music videos, or entertainment productions.

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