Band T-shirts were created in the 1970’s when bands and artists realised they could make money by putting their artwork on T-shirts and selling them. They became very popular with fans and began selling out at concerts.
T-shirts from heavy metal bands such as Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple soon became a fashion statement for teenagers who wanted to express their views on music, and politics.
In the 80’s a new generation of punk music came along and bands such as the Sex Pistols were seen wearing band T-shirts on stage. This made them even more popular with fans who wanted to look like their idols. During this time, iconic T-shirts such as the yellow ‘Never Mind the B#ll#cks’ T-shirt were created, and are still worn today.
Although they had previously been limited to rock and metal fans, the band T-shirt quickly became popular with other genres of music including hip hop and rap. There are many iconic examples of famous Hip Hop T-shirts, the classic Run DMC T-shirt with the large white lettering spelling out the band’s name is definitely a good example.
These days, at every concert venue you will see a whole range of merchandise promoting bands and artists, with printed T-shirts still being the most popular item.
Merchandise has become more important than ever to bands and artists. There is a lot of talk in the media of the music industry suffering due to illegal file sharing and downloading. Artists have to deal with the fact that many people are accessing their music for free. Now, merchandise is one of the biggest sources of income that bands can rely on.
These days, band T-shirts are not only limited to concerts and venues. Many bands and artists sell merchandise through e-commerce sites which has meant that even the most obscure bands can find themselves the center of attention if only for a few fleeting seconds.
Band T-shirts have become such a huge business, not just for the bands themselves but for many fashion stores who have recognized that the band T-shirt is now a fashion item. Many celebrities are seen modelling their favourite bands T-shirt and people want to copy their look.
Young people of today can pay homage to classic rock legends by wearing their T-shirts. It is now common to see teenagers wearing vintage T-shirts by AC/DC, The Clash, The Ramones and The Rolling Stones, even if they weren’t around when these bands were.
Rock Band T-shirts have become a wardrobe staple for hard-core music fans and ‘fashionistas’ alike. Although they have only been around since the 1970’s, band T-shirts are now an iconic item of men’s and women’s clothing that will never go out of style.