Adidas Conductor – Hip Hop Sneakers 101
One of the hottest basketball shoes also became one of the greatest Hip Hop kicks of all time, the Adidas Conductor Hi. When Patrick Ewing left Georgetown for the “Big Apple” to play in the most famous arena of all time (Madison Square Garden), Adidas came knocking at his door! After Run DMC made the Adidas Superstar not only the staple-sneaker for not only New York but also Hip Hop, Patrick Ewing and the New York Knicks were a perfect fit, no shoehorn needed! So what colorway was the most popular…orange and blue of course!
The shoe was one of the clumsiest looking shoes ever created. It was a large looking zoo. Remember that we are talking about the early-mid 1980’s so all hi tops were “hi-tops”.
The other thing that could not be missed is the size of the tongue! It was huge and padded for comfort and almost looked like a boot! But they were one of the most comfortable shoes and kept your feet warm in the cold New York winters.
The lace holes where made of metal and wide enough for fat laces, yet the shoe was never worn that way. The fat laces were seen mostly on shelltoes, Pumas and Adidas Campus.
One of the first rap groups to ever sport these kicks were Run DMC. Now and then you would see Run, D and JMJ rock them now and then. The one thing Run DMC and JMJ could not do? Wear their Adidas with no shoelaces in them!
The one group that did rock them 24/7, the Beastie Boys. It was as if they were born to use them. If you were a Beastie Boys fan, you had to get a Mets cap, and BMW medallion, a beer and a pair of Adidas Conductors.
Funny thing is that in every picture, their Adidas were always dirty and worn down! Run DMC’s Adidas Superstars always looked as if they just took them out the box. It made the Beastie Boys more down-to-earth and more approachable.
The Beastie that rocked them all the time was Mike D. Adrock either had the suede Campus or Supertars, MCA the Stan Smiths and Mike D, the Conductors of course.
As time went on, Patrick Ewing dropped Adidas and so did the Conductors. Ewing then started his own line (Ewing Athletics) yet Hip Hop still followed. Most notably, Ice Cube mentioned the shoe in his “Death Certificate” track Steady Mobbin:
“So after the screwin
I bust a nut and get up and put on my white Ewings”
If you look back at old pictures of early Hip Hop crews, you will see some iconic kicks on their feet. Not to say that we no longer have “iconic” shoes, but there will never be shoes like there was back-n-the-day! Some of these shoes make a comeback due to a retro release and usually they sell out in days if not hours!