Even though Minor Threat frontman Ian MacKaye started an indie punk label that refused to produce merchandise, such as t-shirts, the band is now selling official merchandise in the form of over-priced tees.
The tee in question features the image of the band’s Out of Step album, and is produced not by the label Dischord, but by a company MacKaye hired to handle such products. It seems ironic, but MacKaye swears there’s a good reason. Via Washington City Paper:
“Dischord doesn’t make T-shirts,” MacKaye clarifies in a phone call. But Minor Threat is another story. Because so many bootlegged Minor Threat shirts are constantly floating around the universe, MacKaye decided the band had to do something about it. The solution: Get another company to oversee their official shirts, and when a bootleg crops up, let them deal with it. “It’s fucking absurd the amount of bootlegs are out there,” MacKaye says, and “my time is better spent doing other things.”
“It’s not a political thing for me,” MacKaye says. “I just don’t give a fuck about T-shirts.” At some point, the former Minor Threat frontman said to the band, “This is crazy. I spend so much of my time” chasing down bootleggers. He found that when he contacted the responsible parties about their bootlegs, they just gave him hell. “They get in your face… or they deny it,” he says. “It’s a complete waste of time.”
Minor Threat aren’t the only ones. Urban Outfitters is selling Bad Brains tees as well. We can only hope the trendy shoppers have actually heard these albums before swiping their cards.