The Complex Sneakers Podcast

The Complex Sneakers Podcast

The hosts of the Internet’s biggest sneaker shows, Sneaker Shopping and Full Size Run, come together in The Complex Sneakers Podcast. Joe La Puma, Matt Welty, and Brendan Dunne discuss the most important sneaker news and topics every week, and give their expert opinions that can only be told authentically from Complex.

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July 30, 2021

Listen to ‘Complex Sneakers Podcast’ Ep. 87: Why Is Nike Suing Sneaker Customizers? Mache Responds

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week, the three co-hosts sit down with Mache, a sneaker customizer who has done work for rappers like Wale, NFL stars like Stefon Diggs, and wrestlers like Kofi Kingston. Mache reacts to Nike’s recent lawsuits against custom sneaker designers, explaining how he thinks those entities could move differently in order to avoid legal action. He also breaks down a new footwear business he’s entered—making his own silhouette in the Mache Runner. Mache details how he gets those shoes made and how well they’ve been selling so far. Also, Brendan and Welty give a recap of last week’s special kebab dinner and Joe gives some behind-the-scenes on the Soulja Boy episode of “Sneaker Shopping.”

July 23, 2021

Listen to ‘Complex Sneakers Podcast’ Ep. 86: Flight Club’s Most Notorious Employee Reacts to Modern Day Resellers

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week, the three co-hosts sit down with Chris Vidal, one of the original employees at Flight Club and an outspoken figure in the New York City sneaker scene, to trade stories past and present. Vidal contrasts the sneaker resell world of then vs. now, remembers selling the “Justin Bieber” sneakers at Supra, relives pulling out a fake gun during his tenure at Alife, and talks about helping out David Beckham at the same store. A longtime collector, Vidal also breaks down his history with rare shoes like the Undefeated x Air Jordan 4 and the PlayStation x Nike Air Force 1, and even shows off his SNKRS purchase history. Meanwhile, Welty takes it back to show and tell, Brendan reveals his skincare mistakes, and Joe gets the details on Space Jam 2.

July 16, 2021

Listen to Episode 85 of ‘The Complex Sneakers Podcast’: DJ Clark Kent Reacts to His Sneakers Selling for $121,000

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week, the three co-hosts sit down with DJ Clark Kent for his second appearance on the show to discuss the recent Sotheby’s auction sale of the Scarr’s x Nike Air Force 1 for $121,000. Clark, who designed the shoe with Nike, talks about his feelings about the price, the upcoming Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1s, why he’ll never wear mids, and more. The conversation with Clark comes via the new studio, which means a new look for the show. Also, Joe relives his career in concessions sales with the New York Mets, Welty relives his career in concessions sales at the local waterpark, and Brendan explains his college girlfriend’s disdain for the “Copper” Nike Air Foamposite One.

June 4, 2021

Listen to Episode 80 of ‘The Complex Sneakers Podcast’: Off-White x Nike: The Best, the Worst, and the Rest

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week, the three co-hosts discuss Virgil Abloh’s growing body of Off-White x Nike sneakers, starting at the first release of The Ten in 2017 and extending to the upcoming 50 set of Dunks. How big of an impact have sneakers like the Off-White x Air Jordan 1 had on collaborations and Nike’s approach to them in general? Do we really need another 50 pairs this summer? Also, Welty explains his Memorial Day workout while Joe and Brendan discuss Italian food. Looking for the Complex Sneakers Podcast Dad Hats? Shop on Complex Shop now!  https://shop.complex.com/products/the-complex-sneakers-podcast-dad-hat-white

May 14, 2021

Former Adidas Exec Jon Wexler Reveals How Close He Was to Signing Drake

Rumors began to circulate back in early 2018 about Drake’s sneaker endorsement deal with Jordan Brand, the subsidiary company of Nike, coming to an end after the Canadian rapper made numerous public appearances wearing Adidas gear and shoes. Drake’s switch from the Swoosh to the Three Stripes never materialized, but how close was Drake to signing with Adidas? Three years later, details about the potential signing have come to light. According to former VP GM of Adidas Yeezy Jon Wexler, who is now serving as the VP of Shopify’s creator and influencer program, the signing wasn’t as far along as it was once reported. In the latest episode of the Complex Sneakers Podcast, Wexler tells a story about Adidas’ efforts in trying to sign Drake in 2018. “There was some flirtation back and forth and some meetings, but it was just a really interesting situation because Adidas set up the playbook for the entertainment marketing piece and other people started to do it in their own way,” said Wexler. He initially sensed an opportunity steming from the 2016 NBA All-Star Weekend. “They didn’t even do the Jordan 6 for Toronto All-Star. So I was like, ‘That’s strange.’ From the outside … it’s a no brainer, to me, so I would assume something happened.” Wexler revealed that it was none other than Kanye West that made the connection between Adidas and Drake. “Kanye was at the front-end of all of that. I think they were recording and some stuff together. They [Kanye West and Drake] were exploring stuff with Adidas but I don’t think things were as far along as the blogs were presenting it. There were a lot of rumors flying around but it just didn’t come together. Some people grew up with what they grew up with and that’s what it is.” As for Pusha T’s role in disrupting the deal, as was heavily rumored following his “The Story of Adidon” diss track, Wexler says that wasn’t the case. “By the time that song came out, it was pretty clear that that was already not gonna happen.” Still, he didn’t pass up the opportunity to bring it up the next time they saw each other, which was a week after the song’s release, at Kanye West’s birthday party. “Pusha was like … ‘Yo, what’s up?’ And I was like, ‘My week’s been kinda crazy, this one rapper did this diss track on somebody that I was thinking about signing a deal with, and it turned my whole week upside-down.’ And he just started cracking up.”  Readers can check out the latest episode of the Complex Sneakers Podcast with Wexler in the entirety here.

May 14, 2021

Listen to Episode 77 of ‘The Complex Sneakers Podcast’: Jon Wexler Signed Kanye to Adidas and Helped Build Yeezy

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week they’re joined by sneaker industry veteran Jon Wexler to talk about his 18 years at Adidas, which included working with Kobe Bryant and Tracy McGrady and most notoriously signing Kanye West in 2013. He discusses his time with Yeezy and some of the craziest and most notorious moments with the brand, as well as trying to sign Drake to Adidas before Wexler moved on to Shopify in 2020.

April 30, 2021

Listen to Episode 75 of ‘The Complex Sneakers Podcast’: Hikmet Sugoer Talks Eating Ice Cream Out of Chunky Dunkys

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week, the three co-hosts talk to Solebox founder Hikmet Sugoer about his decades in the German sneaker scene, from sourcing sneakers through American military bases to helping bring new energy to brands like New Balance and Asics. Sugoer breaks down his Nike beef, his exit from Solebox, and that time Pharrell didn’t recognize his own Dunks. Of course, he also addressed the viral video from last year of him eating ice cream out of the Ben & Jerry’s Nike SB Chunky Dunky.

April 23, 2021

The Stories Behind Our Biggest Interviews With Kanye, Nigo, and More

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week, the three co-hosts talk about the most memorable interviews from their shared decades of experience in sneaker media. Joe recalls linking up with Kanye West for an early Complex feature on Kid Cudi, Matt relives meeting Nigo, and Brendan remembers his conversations with industry insiders. Also, the co-hosts discuss sneaker deliveries, workout routines, and a garbage bag full of Mars Yards.

April 9, 2021

How the Shoe Surgeon Became the Go-To Customizer for Drake, Justin Bieber, and Nelly

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne and Matt Welty. This week the guys speak to Dominic Ciambrone, also known as, the Shoe Surgeon. Dominic shares how he became inspired to create custom designed sneakers with a surprise story that includes Pharrell Williams. He goes on to tell some stories behind some of his custom designs for celebrity clients, what’s coming down the pipeline in the future and more.

April 2, 2021

Listen to Episode 71 of ‘The Complex Sneakers Podcast’: Aleali May Talks Her Air Jordan Journey

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne and Matt Welty. This week the guys speak to Aleali May, the second woman to design an Air Jordan and the first woman to ever design a Jordan 1. Aleali takes us back to the beginning of her career, shares the moment she met Michael Jordan, gives an early sneak peek of her upcoming Air Jordan sneaker release, and so much more.

March 26, 2021

Listen to Episode 70 of ‘The Complex Sneakers Podcast’: Paul Mittleman on Making History With Stussy and Adidas

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne and Matt Welty. This week the guys speak to Paul Mittleman to discuss his work at brands like Stussy, Adidas, and Converse. Paul discusses what it was like being the Creative Director of Stussy in their early stages as well as what it was like working with Pharrell Williams, Kanye West, Nigo, and Tyler, The Creator.

March 19, 2021

Listen to Episode 69 of ‘The Complex Sneakers Podcast’: Jerry Lorenzo and Jason Mayden on Building Adidas’ Future

The Complex Sneakers Podcast is co-hosted by Joe La Puma, Brendan Dunne, and Matt Welty. This week the guys speak to Jason Mayden and Jerry Lorenzo on what their future at Adidas will look like. The guys discuss how their partnership came to be, the importance of not trying to be in competition with Nike, and the impact they believe they will be able to bring to Adidas. Jerry Lorenzo also shares the story behind his 3 stripe tattoo as well as the conversations he’s had with Kanye leading up to and after the deal was signed with Adidas. 

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