Otter Disaster Designs - Pop Culture Themed T-Shirts

Thursday, July 12, 2007

My Heavy Metal Heritage: The Jacket

I was a high school headbanger. I had the long hair/mullet, the black, metal band t-shirts(lots of Maiden and AC/DC), and of course I had this totally bad ass denim jacket:

(Click all photos to enlarge)

I got the jacket from my sister Traci in 1989, early in my junior year. She found it on the back of a chair in a bar, and nobody claimed it. Not that she tried very hard to find the owner. I think she gave it to me because she was afraid someone would see her wearing it, and find out she took it.
Anyway, it was really broken in and a little big on me, but I immediately had a vision for this jacket. It would be my heavy metal canvas. When someone saw me walking down the street they would be forced to acknowledge, "That kid is fucking metal!"

I bought an Iron Maiden back patch with the Trooper scene on it:

This back patch epitomized the coolness that my jacket could be. I also stumbled across a small Iron Maiden Piece of Mind patch that adorned the lower waist band of the jacket. You can kind of make it out in the photo above. Maiden was my absolute favorite band at the time. Once the patches were in place, the Sharpie came out. I adorned the jacket with logos from the bands I truly loved then. I know I added the Saxon, AC/DC, and Zeppelin logos right away, hence their prominent positions on the sleeves:

Saxon (Click to enlarge)


Led Zeppelin

I also added the JP logo from Jimmy Page's Outrider solo record, and logos for the Who, Tesla, and the Doors:

The Prong trident, DRI's logo and the Cult logo from Electric and the Jimi Hendrix Experience logo from Are You Experienced, were also drawn on throughout my senior year.

Here is a Metallica logo that I had painted on a ratty pair of jeans. When the jeans wore out, the logo was salvaged to adorn my jacket:

In addition to the logos, I also had any number of pins attached to the jacket:

I think many of the pins in the picture are from college or later, but you get the idea. A couple of pins that were on the jacket from my high school years were my National Honor Society pin and a pin depicting the DCHS (Decatur Community High School) Red Devil inside the letter D.:

A metalhead with school pride. I was an enigma.

I wore the jacket every day. In the 100 degree plus days of August in Kansas or under my winter coat in the dead of winter, I wore it. It had really good makeshift pockets on the inside that would hold 4 cassette tapes on each side so I was always armed with several hours of metal, should an emergency arise. No less than two Maiden albums lived in those pockets at any given time.

I continued to wear the jacket even after I went to college, which was about the time metal was falling out of favor and the whole grunge scene was exploding. I kept my metal mullet until the spring of my sophomore year of college when I cut it all off, but I still occasionally wore the jacket. I wore it less and less as college wore on, but it always hung in a place of prominence.
After graduating college and getting my first professional TV gig I had less cause to wear the jacket and it was pretty much retired.
I pull it out every now and then, and I wore in on Halloween of 2000 or 2001, along with a vintage Tesla concert shirt, and long curly wig. When asked what I was supposed to be, I said, "Myself, ten years ago."

1 comment:

paul kraus said...

it's a great jacket

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