Sometimes a story comes along that is so perfectly tailored to your interests that you just have to let it tell yourself. That’s the case right now.
It’s about the time Boyz II Men wore Air Jordan XIs to an award show and how everyone, Michael Jordan included, loved it. From Nice Kicks:
Nice Kicks: Obviously, you guys are known for the incredible hits you consistently came out with during the 90s, but the sneaker world credits you for one of the most iconic moments of the Air Jordan 11. What do you remember most about wearing Concords on the Grammy stage?
Shawn Stockman of Boyz II Men: I can tell you the exact story MJ told us. Around 95-96, Jordan came out with the Concord 11s, and when they first came out, Jordan told us that the people over at Nike were not big fans of the 11, initially. Jordan had to convince them that the 11s would be great. He told them that one day an entertainer is going to wear those kicks with a tuxedo or something like that because of the patent leather toe. It makes sense because patent leather shoes are often worn with tuxedos. Lo and behold, the day of the Grammy’s, the guys and I came out in White Sox baseball caps, tuxedos and Jordan 11s. MJ saw it and was like, ‘Yo, this is crazy!’ He was a big fan of the group even before that, so when we finally met up with each other, he told us this story that I’m telling you now and how Nike really didn’t like the 11 when it was initially produced. From that meeting, we became really good friends. Since then, we’ve been getting Jordans on the regular because of that. I pretty much have every single Jordan that has come out since that meeting.
That’s good enough, but if you believe Tinker Hatfield’s (the shoe’s designer and a legend in his field) account of MJ’s response, it’s even better. From Counter Kicks:
After the Boyz II Men performance, Michael Jordan, ever the competitive spirit, placed a call to Tinker Hatfield directly. He opened with the simple line: “I told you so, motherf—er.”
Easily the best story about iconic basketball shoes worn by a male vocal group. I’m sure you agree.