Andre 3000’s new collection of merchandise brings back the powerful slogans the rapper donned during Outkast’s reunion tour in 2014. While they packed a powerful punch more than 6 years ago when he wore them originally, the phrases are more prevalent than ever during a time of political unrest and national turmoil following the murder of George Floyd and the subsequent Black Lives Matter protests.
In a new interview with Blackbird Spyplane, 3K explained in more detail how he came up with the phrases.
“All these slogans were made during the OutKast tour in 2014,” Andre said. “I wanted to find something to keep myself excited each night, because I didn’t have new verses and new songs, and it felt weird to play old songs from 1993, so I said, ‘Let me put these thoughts on my suits.’”
He continued, saying, “Some were serious, some were silly. Just random thoughts like me admitting to loving fruit snacks! But also this was summer 2014 so with a lot of these suits I was responding to Ferguson in real time. So it was fun and serious and sad and everything. But they still make sense now—they ring even truer.”
The newly released t-shirts were inspired by the jumpsuits that he wore all throughout the tour, which featured sayings like, “Across cultures darker people suffer most, Why?” “Ok, hand over the cure and stop playing,” “I pray there’s a god at the end of all this,” “Can one rest in peace & violence?”
Andre also discussed the fact that these shirts being “made ethically” was important to him. He explained, “every day I’m looking for better ways to make it make sense, because honestly a lot of these clothes we’re making aren’t necessary, so we have to find the best way to make these artful goods. We’re not in Alaska where we need to cover ourselves to survive—these are fashion.”
Check out Andre 3000’s first Instagram post since 2018 announcing the merchandise below. You can purchase one for yourself here.