Top Dawg Entertainment (TDE) brought their traveling pop-up shop to Los Angeles' Downtown district from May 9 to May 13. Fans patiently awaited outside the doors of sneaker shop Blends to obtain exclusive merchandise provided by the independent record label, originally spearheaded by Anthony "Top Dawg" Tiffith.
The pop-up shop is paired up with stops on the first ever full-label TDE tour, featuring Kendrick Lamar, SZA, Schoolboy Q, Jay Rock and more. The 29-city trek kicked off in Vancouver B.C. and will venture to a number of big cities, including Houston, New York, Boston, Toronto and Chicago.
Nike partnered with TDE to release a range of exclusive products and experiences. The merchandise included a variety of sports-themed Top Dawg long sleeve shirts, various sweatshirts, classic robes, jerseys and hats in the colors black, white, grey and red.
Decorated with concrete masonry units, the design of the shop included simplistic touches of chains and red-tone posters of various images displayed throughout the customized space. A unique touch to the display at the pop-up included TDE's very own locker room, presenting each member of Top Dawg with their respective athletic number, a customized chair with their stage name on it, as well as a hat and shirt.
TDE x NIKE present the Championship Tour Pop-Up at BLENDS in Los Angeles, CA from May 9 to May 13, 2018.Courtesy of Nike
Embedded in one of the concrete units with the title "Lead The Whole Damn Pack," the exhibit acknowledged the Pulitzer-winning rapper, who has served as the label's unofficial leader since its 2004 genesis. "Every team needs a captain. A leader to put it all on the line and bet it back no matter the cost. Since the early days of Top Dawg Entertainment Kendrick Lamar has led the pack, setting the tone for his team and setting the bar for each artist as they make their own moves," a statement for the exhibit said. "To celebrate the label's first tour, Nike and TDE present a collection of exclusive tour apparel built for a leader, alongside a new iteration of the Cortez Kenny."
Following his first two editions of the Nike Cortez, Kung Fu Kenny kicked off the release of the "Cortez Kenny III" at the Los Angeles stop of his tour at The Forum. Nike debuted the shoe -- which sold out in a minute -- on their SNKRS Stash app during the two shows (May 11 and May 12), with visual hints on screens at the venue.
Once on the app, which was geo-fenced to the Forum, users were presented with visual hints of the locations in which they needed to be in order to unlock purchase access for the shoe.
In addition to Los Angeles, five other cities will exclusively release the Kendrick Lamar x Nike Cortez Kenny III during the Championship Tour -- making the concert and the sneaker drop a full experience for die hard hip-hop (and sneakerhead) fans.