It is easy to find rock band t-shirt merchandise in Bangalore today, thanks to innovative entrepreneurs who saw the business as early as the 1950s when Elvis Priestly started the craze for rock and roll. Today, this is a billion-dollar industry not only in India but worldwide. It is a great way for fans of a singer to appreciate their idol and also make his career profitable. So, if you want to know more about the fascinating history of rock band t-shirts and other merch, then read on.
Let’s start with Elvis. In 1956, it was Elvis Priestly’s company that produced band shirts to promote their upcoming singles. Then in 1964, when the Beatles were touring the USA, they created music T-shirts for their American fans. In 1968, a dedicated manufacturing company by the name of Winterland Production was created to manufacture rock band t-shirts. The iconic ty-dye rock band t-shirt, the most common one that you can see was first made by The Grateful Dead in 1971. By the mid-70s, it entered mainstream fashion when Vivian Westwood created the Destroy T-shirt.
So, this was a brief history of rock band t-shirts and other merchandise in the Western world. What about India? Well, rock and roll wave entered India in the 70’s but often found its outlet through Bollywood music. There were no dedicated bands as such and even if there were some, it was limited to a certain class of society. Even rock band merchandise were limited to these class which were mainly young people who went abroad for studies or had relatives living there. The rock and roll scene of India truly expanded when MTV entered the Indian entertainment industry in the early 90s. Groups like IndusCreed, Indian Ocean, Parikrama, Euphoria, Agam and others soon captured the attention of Rock music lovers in India. Along with them, there rose a demand for merchandise from these bands.
The new millennium especially saw a boom in demand for such merchandise. One city that became really famous for its rock and roll culture and music is Bangalore, the Silicon Valley of India. With a huge number of young people working in the IT sector, as well as expats from Western countries, there was a good demand for rock band T-shirt merchandise in Bangalore. Now there are many companies, most of them online, who are dedicated to bringing the merch from rock bands to their Indian fans. Rock bands in India also have their own stores to sell their merchandise.
So, this is a short history of rock band merchandise in India.