How Adidas Took Over the Sneaker Game with a 50-Year-Old Shoe

In an era of Yeezys, it was heartening to come across this valuable article written by Matt Giles via Longreads. Know your roots.
[adidas Superstars signed by all Run DMC members] Image via


The opening bars to Run-D.M.C.’s classic “My Adidas” are among the greatest lines in all of rap:

My Ahhh-didas, walk through concert doors
And roam all over coliseum floors
I stepped on stage, at Live Aid
All the people gave, and the poor got paid
And out of speakers I did speak
I wore my sneakers but I’m not a sneak
My Adidas touch the sand of a foreign land
With mic in hand, I cold took command
My Adidas and me close as can be
We make a mean team, my Adidas and me

It wasn’t just that D.M.C. kicked off the hit track, which blared from playgrounds and suburbs in 1986 (and beyond), in such an explosive, heavy-hitting manner; “My Adidas” was a clarion call for the group’s love of Adidas Superstar sneakers—essentially the first ever product placement in a mainstream crossover hit. And the group didn’t have to get…

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