Kendrick Lamar, Dave Free’s PgLang Launch sneakers with Converse – WWD

Kendrick Lamar’s season is fast approaching.

The Grammy Award-winning rapper recently excited the music world with the announcement of his upcoming album, “Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers,” which will be released on May 13. But ahead of the release of his fifth album, PgLang, Lamar’s cross-functional services company with business partner Dave Free, is launching collaboration sneakers with Converse exclusively on Pg-Lang.com and Converse.com.

Dave Free, Lamar’s longtime collaborator, said he and Lamar teamed up on the design with Converse, but the entire PgLang team ultimately put their spin on the design. Free considers Converse sneakers to be a staple of LA urban culture and a style that stands the test of time.

“We’ve designed shoes together in the past,” Free said of working with Lamar on the sneakers. “Both the Chuck 70 and the Pro Leather still have elements of those shoes. We learned a lot from that process about what not to do and tried a new take.

The Chuck 70 pair features an off-white upper, neutral logo patch and PgLang branding, while the Pro Leather has a white and neutral colored pattern on the upper and the company’s logo and branding alongside Star Chevron of Converse and the heel of the sneaker. Free teased the Chuck 70 and Pro Leather sneakers on his Instagram in April.

The PgLang for Converse Chuck 70 sneakers.
Anthony Blue Jr.

The duo opted for subtle details on these styles, like the hike-style eyelets that Free says will patina over time and give them character, cryptic text graphics and an asymmetrical rubber polish. In addition, the white color lends itself to customization. “You can’t reinvent the wheel, but you can refine it,” Free said.

He added of the partnership, “We now have this thing where we cold call companies and tell them what we want to do and Converse was down. We wear Chucks all the time, so we thought we might as well make a PgLang version.

Lamar and Free founded PgLang in March 2020 to tell stories that connect people through shared experiences. They unveiled the company with a visual mission statement featuring Lamar, musical artists Jorja Smith and Baby Keem, and actress Yara Shahidi.

Free in April 2022 revealed on Twitter that PgLang stands for “program language” and added “Pg is the operating system; bring your files, let the co-developers work.”

pgLang for Converse Pro Leather

The PgLang for Converse Pro Leather sneakers.
Anthony Blue Jr.

Since its inception, PgLang has collaborated with Calvin Klein, producing a series of seven short films for the brand written and directed by Free, and signed artists Baby Keem and Tanna Leone, the latter having released a new album, “Sleepy Soldier”. April 28. Leone stars alongside model Seleh Marley in Savannah Setten-led content piece supporting the launch of PgLang for Converse

As for other collaborations in the future, Free said, “I don’t see why not to collaborate. We always have opportunities to work with really great brands that understand the vision and we want that to continue. Any partner or artist that we consider an alumnus.

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