Guys in caps

“the” continues the story about the aesthetics of subcultures and their influence on fashion. The last time they talked about the Rastas, and today about bikers. Originated in 1950-e years, this subculture has become one of the most famous in the world, and allows companies to earn the love of motorcycles and leather jackets hundreds of millions of dollars.

the debate about where it originated subculture of bikers, not subside until now. The Americans believe that the first was they and the British only grin in response, knowing now that the championship belongs to them. In fact we can talk about two different subcultures that existed on opposite sides of the Atlantic simultaneously, and together formed the pop-culture image of a typical biker.

the Word biker has come to us from America, while in Britain the representatives of the subculture called café racers, ton-up fights and rockers. And if the etymology of the word biker is clear: it comes from the English word bike — a motorcycle with English concepts all the more complicated. The fact is that if us bikers used a heavy motorcycle class chopper and cruiser, the representatives of the British subcultures were obsessed with sports and pseudo-racing motorcycles.

In the world of European Motorsport, in the middle of the XX century, which now was not more insane, a prestigious and dangerous competition than “Tourist Trophy” or just the TT. Young Brits wanted to look like the heroes of these races held on public roads on the Isle of man. That’s only raced on their bikes young rake at a short distance from café to café, which gave them the name of the cafe racers.

the Distinguishing features of their motorcycles top speed exceeding 100 mph (160 kilometers per hour). In slang, this rate was denoted by the word ton, a ton-up boy — boy, driving at speeds above 100 miles per hour. Finally, the name rocker has nothing to do with rock music. Young British riders, of course, listened to fashion in those days of rock-n-roll, but his name was due to installed on their bikes motors.

unlike the mods, I love two-stroke Italian scooters Lambretta and Vespa, rockers rode motorcycles with four-stroke power units, valves in gas distribution mechanism which is operated by the rocker arms, and English rocker — just rocker.

art among bikers, among the café racers were considered to go for tailored motorcycle: the chopper in the US and Triton, in England. The name Triton is derived from the names of the two motorcycle manufacturers Triumph and Norton. From Norton this hybrid received a frame-Perina, considered the most tough and durable, and Triumph — twin cylinder engine which in those years on the Islands was the most powerful.

the appearance of the motorcycle is also modified to give it the maximum similarity to a racing machine. Short snub tail, deep single seat, lowered handles and sport tires Dunlop TT100 — this was the classic recipe for ton-up motorcycle.

American bikers initially, too, loved the speed, but their motorcycles were created for a completely different recipe. Due to the fact that the most popular motorcycles of America has been a heavy Harley-Davidson with a fairly low power signalnyi motors, fans racing on dirt tracks was necessary to facilitate their stories. Front fender is completely removed, the back — cut, under the knife fell the decoration of the exhaust were withdrawn vertically upwards, the frame shortened, and the saddle lowered as low as possible. It was called a Bob job, and the motorcycle — bobber.

the First bobber appeared in 1920-ies, but the universal popularity of such bikes were after 1953 film Laszlo Benedek “Savage” (The Wild One) with Marlon Brando in the title role. “Savage” largely shaped the image of the biker as the bad guy, having problems with the law and living at high speed. The film was based on the novel Frank’s “attack of the motorcyclists” (“The Cyclists’ Raid”), it told about the events in the California town of Hollister, which took place on 4 and 5 July 1947. Then on held in the town of the race came to an unusually large number of participants, the authorities were not ready, that turned into a riot of drunken bikers.

Despite the commonality of American and British café racers, their appearance was influenced by different factors. In the US the cult status gained style hero Marlon Brando from “the wild one.” Leather jacket, cap, boots and jeans formed a definitive image of the American biker. Over time, the past is gone only a cap that had replaced the bandana. And your image of Brando came up with on their own — all things from the wardrobe of his character Marlon bought and personally visited the site already in full gear.

However, the bike is the main character of johnny Strabler was also from the garage Brando. And here the actor a few pierced, because he rode a Triumph Thunderbird — an expensive imported bike, which was delivered to US in small quantities and was not available to the young people.

Surprisingly, in the UK, the movie “Savage” was banned in over 14 years, and the first show took place only in 1968. However, fashion tone-up fighting was not much different from the style of Marlon Brando. The British also loved leather jackets, which were decorated with patches, metal studs, medallions, and trinkets from stores with gas stations Esso. Also on both sides of the ocean loved jeans iconic brands Levi’s and Wrangler.

in Order to show his greatness that in the US, in the UK bikers and biker preferred to ride without helmets. American and British motorcycle lovers licking the hair back and growing sideburns. As for the ocean, the Islands popular caps, but for a much more severe climate, the British almost always wore silk scarves and cravats. Another difference of the islanders the Americans have shoes. In addition to leather boots English loved and crepery.

in addition to the convenience this footwear was also quite slutty image, which is reflected in the name brothel creepers — bordel shoes. According to legend, when they reached Cairo, the British rushed to the local brothel undetected — rubber outsole allow you to walk almost silently.

in Addition to rockers creeper adored and Teddy-fighting, rubber platform which reached truly gigantic proportions. Due to the fact that Teddy boys, and rockers had a nasty reputation for rebels and thugs, until the end of 1970-ies the creeper remained outside of mass fashion.

Given a Marlon Brando style was picked up by James Dean. Same hairstyle, same white shirt, same jeans, same leather jacket, same motorcycle Triumph, albeit a more advanced model Tiger T110, plus sunglasses. American youth finally melted, and by the end of the decade of the biker fashion of the early 1950s had become mainstream. The desire to differ from common people bikers has not been canceled.

To replace leather jackets vests came, replaced the caps — bandanas and a bobber in the United States changed the choppers. American bikers less raced, and therefore the fastest motorcycle they were no longer needed. But the style of king of the road has become very relevant. All this has led to the emergence of a new type of motorcycle — chopper. He was different long frame, long front fork with a large removal of wheels, abundance of chrome and bright photos!

a Reference example of the chopper that spawned many replicas and imitations — a motorcycle “Captain America” from the film Dennis hopper “easy rider” (“Easy rider”). By the end of 1960-ies of the bikers stopped racing, changed the alcohol to the previously hated drugs and have created a powerful biker clubs, many of which in fact presented an organized criminal group. Theft of motorcycle, burglary, racketeering, pimping and selling drugs were the source of their profits.

Hollywood responded with a new genre: the “Moto the movie”, in which good opposed bad bikers bikers. The role of the forces of light and goodness could act and local farmers, and the police alone. Alas, most of these films were neither the original story nor good casting. High quality copyright movies like “easy rider” was a rarity, and the genre has degenerated into a Comedy. If in 1947 events in Hollister become for America a real shock, and conservative Americans perceive the bikers as horse riders of the Apocalypse, the end of the 1970s, they became an object of ridicule and irony.

Harley-Davidson Motorcycles more and more obsolete, the market is gradually captured Japanese equipment, but really cool riders boarded Superbikes, fully succeeding in this regard-in closet. From head to toe clad in protection in bright overalls and painted the helmets, they looked more like “power Rangers” or “X-Men” than the characters of James Dean and Marlon Brando. But Hollywood has done its job, the image of a biker on a huge and covered in chrome “Harley” became canonical.

Realizing that subculture of bikers is a gold mine, the company rushed them to earn. Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki motorcycles released in the American style, which combined a more modern compared to the “Harleys” the filling with the canonical appearance. On the market there are many companies that produce specialized clothing for bikers and revenue Harley-Davidson from the sale of branded clothing reached a quarter of the proceeds from the sale of motorcycles.

But mainstream brands are not far behind. Leather jacket in classic Moto style released Hugo Boss and Barbour, Alexander McQueen and Ralph Lauren, Zara, H&M and many others, Shoe brand Ecco and is supported by the Russian Studio Fine Custom Mechanics that built custom motorcycle Bonny for a record run at the salt lake Bonneville. Ecco has launched a limited collection of t-shirts of cotton with the image of a motorcycle Bonny.

Over time, many of the attributes of biker fashion like leather pants, metal jewelry, skulls, crosses, leather straps and boots became part of the mainstream. To see the supermodel Gigi Hadid in a leather jacket, dotted with metal studs, now commonplace.

Not far behind and watch manufacturers. For example, the Swiss watch brand Baume et Mercier recently released model Clifton Burt Munro Tribute Club and Clifton Club Indian Legend Tribute, which was developed in cooperation with the Indian — one of the oldest motorcycle manufacturers.

Subculture, the café racers had such powerful media support, left, by and large, the British phenomenon. Some elements of a style top-up fights have become widespread thanks to the hard rockers and punks, others were perceived by the hard mods and skinheads. Now jeans tucked evoke associations with the past, not with lovers of motorcycles.

nevertheless, the producers are trying to cash in on the nostalgia of the cafe racers. Motorcycles in a similar style release Ducati, BMW, Suzuki, Yamaha and, of course, Triumph. Line in an appropriate style there are many manufacturers of motorcycle clothing and gear, and the British clothing brand Belstaff, and is produces a line Pure Motorcycle inspired by the era.

of Course, conflicts between certain units of the four biggest clubs in the world (Hells Angels MC, Bandidos MC, Outlaws MC and Pagans MC) still are criminal in nature, and the bikers themselves occasionally become objects of police developments and reasons for special operations, but this is an exception. In Russia, the most known bike club “Night wolves” it is an organization that supports the interests of the Kremlin.

the Club is not only preparing a controversial motocross, Patriotic education of youth and the organization of the concerts, but also produces her own line of clothing. After all real biker its appearance is not less important than his motorcycle.