There is no denying that Adidas has been on the rise.
They are now the second-most popular sneaker brand in the United States, passing Jordan brand as of last year - according to Business Insider.
And in doing so, "Yeezy jumped over Jumpman" came to life.
However, there is some wrong in the phrase...
Yeezy had a partner in crime.
He goes by the name of Pharrell Williams - the Robin to Kanye.
With the recent Holi Festival reveals by Adidas, there is one thing that's for certain.
Pharrell is on the rise.
Who Is Pharrell?
Best known for his Grammy-winning work as a Pop/R&B musician and producer, the 'creative genius' has become one of the leading influencers within the music industry.
He's worked with an array of famous artists under the production crew known as The Neptunes.
From Britney Spears to Madonna.
From Justin Timberlake to Jay-Z.
Impressively, we recently saw him and his band N.E.R.D star with Migos for the 2018 NBA All-Star Game halftime performance.
Whether it was performing by himself or with his hip-hop rock band N.E.R.D (which stands for Nothing Ever Really Dies), Pharrell was always seen as the 'poster child' for the creative minds.
Cerebral. Intelligent. Creative.
All words used to describe Pharrell.
However, in recent times, many have acknowledge the talented producer's energy and willingness to learn.
Craig Shapiro, founder of Collaborative Fund, an investment fund with which Pharrell has partnered comments:
"Pharrell's energy is endless ... and his thirst for knowledge is unparalleled. He truly enjoys learning new things and meeting new people -- something most people are overwhelmed by."
As the years went on, Pharrell reinvented himself as a fashion designer.
He co-founded two fashion labels—Billionaire Boys Club and Ice Cream with Tomoaki "Nigo" Nagao.
And on top of that, he has been on collaborations with a multitude of brands.
G-Star Raw. Chanel. Louis Vuitton. Commes Des Garcon. Uniqlo.
You can check out his full lookbook here
This was all cemented in 2015 when awarded the CFDA (The Council of Fashion Designers of America) Fashion Icon Award.
The Fashion Icon award celebrates an individual whose style has made an impact on popular culture on an international stage. Previous winners include Rihanna, Lady Gaga and Kate Moss.
Pharrell is the second male recipient of the award with Johnny Depp previously winning in 2012. And mind you he won it in 2015, competing against other nominees with the likes of Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors and Alexander Wang.
Pretty impressive hey?
Diane von Furstenberg, president of the CFDA (The Council of Fashion Designers of America) comments:
“If cool was a person, it would be Pharrell, not just for his looks and sense of style but for his kindness and openness."
The Other Pharrell
Whilst people are familiar with Pharrell's creativity and talents, not many are aware of his philanthropic efforts.
On his first collaboration with Adidas, Pharrell was highly intrigued by tennis and therefore decided to work on the Stan Smith sneakers.
He believed that tennis by having the word 'love' as part of its language in the scoring system would be the perfect platform to communicate the issues concerning the world.
At the same time, Williams announced a new children’s tennis scholarship in partnership with Horizons National as well as a donation to the New York City Parks Department to restore tennis courts around the city.
Last year, with his interest in tennis, together with Adidas he launched the 'QUIET PLEASE' campaign. Designed to engage the local community and inspire change through love and positivity, the campaign challenges the status quo by encouraging people to speak up and let their voices be heard.
The fashion designer took it to another level with custom, digitally created “LIBERTY + JUSTICE” AM4MN (adidas Made for Minneapolis) cleats. He hope that these cleats will help unite instead of divide and use sports for good.
On top of all this, he formed his multimedia creative collective 'I Am Other'.
Through this initiative, Pharrell focuses on turning the consumer generation he influences into fellow entrepreneurs. In doing so, the producer plans to utilise this collective to inspire individuals their 'something' to offer and to realise that it is their duty to live life on their terms. By integrating these individuals in one collective space, Pharrell hopes to fulfil his ultimate goal to find a way to serve humanity through our given talents.
"I serve and represent the OTHERS because I am one myself. The 'others' being anyone who has ever felt outside of the 'norm', anyone who has ever felt they couldn't be categorised, anyone who has ever felt different."
Pharrell and Adidas. The Hot New Couple.
It all started in 2014.
Pharrell began collaborating with Adidas when he debuted a new line featuring reinvented Stan Smith sneakers and track jackets.
Later down the track, they came in 'Polka' and 'Jacquard' packs as seen below.
Then 2015 came and that was when Pharrell's prominence became apparent.
Helping revive the Superstar silhouette, Pharrell collaborated on 'Supercolor', a range of Superstars that included 50 different colourways.
According to Bloomberg, Adidas declared 2015 as “The Year of the Superstar”. Thanks to Pharrell, the company sold over 15 million pairs of the shoe in 2015 and Superstars are now a billion-dollar industry.
After a very successful year, Pharrell in collaboration with Adidas dropped the iconic NMD 'Human Race'.
It was this very moment that solidified the producer's force with Adidas.
The project was aimed at exploring humanity and celebrating cultural diversity.
Pharrell on the project:
"Hu is short for human – human being, human race, humankind. But Hu, itself is also a reference to colour. We all have a colour. We all look different, we all speak different languages, but we’re all connected."
Following the success of the Hu campaign, Pharrell returned to the tennis scene where he felt most passionate. Featuring the iconic equal-sign symbol, the Tennis Hu silhouette featured a woven NMD-esque upper with Stan Smith touches.
So what now?
Pharrell has released multiple renditions of the NMD Hu's, most notably the Trail Pack and the Chanel collaboration.
And he has shown no signs of stopping. As of recent, images of an inspired Hindu Holi festival (observed in India, a lively celebration of colour and love) and a Billionaire Boys club collaboration have surfaced the net.
The Case For Pharrell Over Other Celebrities
Just looking at his shoes, it is quite simple to see what Pharrell is all about.
He inspires ordinary people to discover and embraces their individual talents - but whilst doing so still be able to humbly come together as one human race.
And that's what I find unique about Pharrell.
Unlike Drake or Kanye, he finds the perfect balance between prestige and humility.
Yes, he has the style and class to offer individuals sentiments of luxury - as seen by the Chanel and Billionaire Boys Club collaborations.
But he also has the humility and empathy to appeal to the ordinary individual - which we've seen through the Hu and Holi Festival series.
In today's day and age, it is safe to say that Pharrell's persona is growing in popularity.
People gravitate towards that balanced energy of Pharrell.
The energy where you're hustling hard but still have the humility to remember your roots.
The energy where you embrace your unique talents but still remain conscious of the similarities that unite the human race.
The energy where your confidence is showcased aesthetically and intellectually.
And with people always striving to emulate prominent figures, it would be rather foolish to question why one would aspire to Pharrell's way of life.
Adidas Moving Forward
We all know that Nike's legacy has been built upon inspiring ordinary individuals to strive for greatness.
This is what their brand is all about.
This is why they are still number one.
Unless Adidas wants to always be behind Nike, they must make a change.
It all starts with making Pharrell the new face. Pharrell, the perfect balance between status and humility will appeal to all consumers targeted by Adidas. And this will be the perfect stepping stone for the German brand to challenge Nike for the top spot.
PUSHAS' Available Pharrell Selection
Interested in copping a pair of Pharrells?
Check out some of the styles we have on our site!
Pharrell x NMD HU Trail 'Oreo' (New)
Pharrell x NMD HU Trail 'Sun Glow'
The future seems bright for Pharrell Williams.
Just recently, Adidas headlined him alongside the likes of Alexander Wang and Karlie Kloss as part of their 'Here to Create' campaign.
The campaign encouraging creative ingenuity excluded Kanye West...
Whilst it may sound daring, Kanye's figure just does not resonate with people anymore. His public arrogance simple misaligns with the contemporary societal values.
Rather, it is Pharrell who embodies the social discourse of today. An embodiment of joy, humanity, and equality.
He might not be the new face of Adidas just yet, but we can definitely expect Adidas start to seriously harness his influence.
Let us know what you think in the comments below!
By Daniel PUSHAS