A few days ago, one of my students was wearing what I thought was a New York Rangers t-shirt.
“Rangers,” I said. “Nice. You a hockey fan?” Whenever a student of mine–I teach college–wears hockey apparel, I have to voice my approval.
“Huh?” she said. “This is a t-shirt for a band.”
Upon a closer look, I saw that the text that would normally read NEW YORK RANGERS was replaced with STRAY FROM THE PATH.
I thought that was stupid. Take a recognizable sports logo, and put your own text on it. It lacks creativity and is a cheap attempt at recognition.
Plus these guys are a metal band, and the Rangers “shield” doesn’t really scream hardcore. Not that I’m hating on metal–I still listen to my Megadeth CDs every now on then.
What really annoyed me, though, was that my student didn’t know that this was a hockey logo. She never heard of the New York Rangers, and thought it was just some design the band made up. In all fairness, I never heard of Stray From the Path. But I checked them out on GrooveShark, and they sound all right.
Later, I found an interview where the guitarist talks about their last CD and their Rangers-themed t-shirt:
“… we all worked our asses off for that CD and I stand behind it, I stand behind everything. If we sell a million t-shirts of our New York Rangers shirt that we’ll get sued by the New York Rangers, then maybe I’ll see someone from the New York Rangers in court.”
Tough words from a guy who’s band doesn’t even have a Wikipedia entry.
It is cool when a musician shows their appreciation for hockey. Back in high school, I had a magazine clipping of Anthrax guitaris Dan Lilker wearing a New York Rangers jersey while performing. When I saw the alt-rock band Candlebox in college, I thought it was awesome when they took to the stage clad in red Blackhawks jerseys.
But this…just lame.
So what do you think?
Is this a cool t-shirt design that you would wear if you were a fan of Stray From The Path?
Or do you think that repurposing a recognized team logo is an inappropriate method of self-promotion?