Roc-A-Fella Records may be no more, but the chain still remains. And the nostalgia around the label that Jay Z started with Harlem natives Dame Dash and Kareem “Biggs” Burke grows by the year. This was proven with the re-release of the label’s Air Force 1, which first surfaced in 1999 as a promo-only sample and later saw a limited release in 2003. Nike decided to drop the shoe this year at ComplexCon, with wider distribution happening everywhere from Tier 0 shops to Foot Locker. The shoe itself, though, almost didn’t happen back in the late ‘90s. As the story goes, Drew Greer, the Nike employee, who came up with the idea for the Roc-A-Fella Air Force 1, almost got fired for making the shoe without going through the proper internal channels. But a good idea is a good idea, and 18 years later Nike’s fully backing the shoe.


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