Some of the most desirable caps coming through the pipeline in recent years are collaborations that feature a music artist on a team cap. Given the intersection of baseball caps and hip-hop culture occurred several decades ago it’s surprising that artist-branded collab caps haven’t really hit the scene until the 2010s. Such caps began life as tour-exclusives (you could only find them by dropping bills at a concert) and have since become regular releases in stores and pop-ups around the world. Names such as Jay-Z, Eminem, Bun B, Chance the Rapper, Big Sean, and today’s featured artist have all seen their own designs paired up with an MLB team.
Pinpointing the originator of the artist/team-collaborated hat (rather than just the artist being famous for wearing a specific hat) for the moment leads to Jay-Z, most famous for perpetually wearing a Yankees cap. An “All Black Everything” Yankees fitted with three red stripes as a side detail made the rounds in 2010 and perhaps is the first in what is now a long line of team/artist collaboration caps.
Today’s example (if you haven’t guessed already) is by Canadian superstar Drake:
Black crown, brim, and New Era logo
Metallic gold and black Blue Jays logo
I doubt you need a history lesson on Drake, so here’s a quick synopsis: once an actor on hit Canadian teen drama Degrassi, the Toronto native is now considered one of the top artists in the rap game, amassing a sizable net worth on the back of multiple hit singles and releases you’ve undoubtedly heard unless you live under a rock. This collector is a fan of Drake’s work; hence this and another hat (in a future episode) sitting in the archive.
Black and gold is the de facto colorway of Drake’s October’s Very Own (OVO) brand. This colorway works very well on a cap; the black allows the metallic gold threading and details to pop.
The biggest detail on the cap is this sidepatch, denoting the brand name, year the cap was released, the Toronto skyline and Drake’s owl logo. Drake himself is a big sports fan. He is known for making GIF-worthy appearances (which some consider unlucky) on the sidelines of many games, most notably Kentucky basketball and Toronto Raptors contests. The Raptors went as far as to design their City series jerseys in the OVO colorway.
The Batterman at the rear is matching metallic gold and black. In a nice surprise, it is the flat-stitched Jerry Dior logo found on older New Era caps and vintage remakes.
In another nod to a vintage look, the underbrim is kelly green and the sweatband is white. While white sweatbands are cool to look at and make for a nice touch they make the cap unwearable during hotter months (unless you don’t mind staining). For a cap with value such as this one it becomes even less wearable on a regular basis.
Cap Availability Status: Grail
Like many artist/team collaborations, this cap is considered a grail among collectors and fans of either/or the artist or team. You’ll have to pony up top dollar on the secondary market if you’d like to add one of these caps to your own collection.