Nike Launches Grateful Dead Line of Shoes
Good news for sneakerheads and Deadheads alike: Nike has unveiled a new line of Grateful Dead-inspired shoes.
The Nike SB Dunk Low Grateful Dead will come in three different colors at a retail price of $110 per pair. The sneakers’ vibrant design was inspired by the band’s famous dancing bears, which first appeared on the back cover of the group’s 1973 LP History of the Grateful Dead, Volume 1 (Bear’s Choice).
The shoes’ distinctive features include faux fur, an image of the bear on the outer tongue and a small zipper pouch on the inner tongue - the perfect size for stashing.
You can see photos of the new Grateful Dead sneakers below.
The dancing bear's origins can be traced back to Owsley Stanley, the audio engineer and LSD proponent - nicknamed Bear - who was instrumental in the Grateful Dead’s career.
"As the band’s benefactor, Bear was an incredibly huge part of the Grateful Dead’s ability to become who they were,” David Lemieux, the band’s archivist and legacy manager said in a statement. “They were talented musicians, but they would not have had the financial freedom to forgo jobs, move to Los Angeles and practice for 14 hours a day. The band wouldn’t become what it is today without Bear’s innovations and contributions.”
Bear also designed the Grateful Dead’s other iconic logo, known as the “Steal Your Face” skull and named after the band's 1973 live album. On the new shoes, that image can be found on the underside of the sock liner.
The orange Nike SB Dunk Low Grateful Dead comes out on July 18 via FTC Skateshop. The yellow and green versions will follow on July 24 at Nike’s SNKRS app and select skate shops.