Virgil Abloh Travels to Music’s Roots for Louis Vuitton Menswear Spring 2022
By Ann B, Jun 28, 2021
Louis Vuitton menswear returns to the roots of music.
For Spring 2022, Virgil Abloh turned to the roots of hip-hop and electronic music, specifically through the most sampled breakbeat in history. He named both the collection and its accompanying film Amen Break, after the four-bar drum solo by GC Coleman of The Winstons.
Odds are, you’ve probably heard the Amen Break, a four-bar drum solo recorded in 1969 by funk and soul band The Winstons. It originally appeared on their Grammy-winning album Color Me Father on the B-side track “Amen Brother.” At 1:25, drummer GC Coleman’s six-second drum solo takes place. That break would disrupt the course of music history. It became the most sampled break of all time, used by NWA, David Bowie, Skrillex, and countless others.
Amen Break would also be the name of the Spring 2022 Louis Vuitton men’s collection and its accompanying film. “I called the collection that, because I think it’s so profound: this idea that something can be iterated on by so many artists in so many songs, to the point where it melts away—they weren’t compensated for it, by the way,” Louis Vuitton men’s creative director Vigil Abloh told Vogue. “And people don’t know that the drum pattern in their favorite song was from a very specific soul song—and it’s a sampler that makes it possible.”
Abloh uses this very notion of sampling, along with the shared roots of hip hop and rave cultures in the collection, sampling Louis Vuitton’s famed monogram and Damier print on Nike Air Force 1s. An orange Louis Vuitton monogram briefcase shared both Nike and LV logos. Louis Vuitton’s signature weekend bag got a mountain print, and bags and cases were updated with splashes of color. A fish backpack got its scales from Louis Vuitton quatrefoils. Abloh also embraced fluidity, creating a number of looks with skirts.