Jay-Z, logo designer?

Multi-platinum selling rapper, music mogul and Mr Beyoncé Jay-Z has unveiled a new string to his bow – graphic designer. The erstwhile Shawn Carter has reportedly ‘designed’ the new identity for the basketball team he co-owns, the Brooklyn Nets

Multi-platinum selling rapper, music mogul and Mr Beyoncé Jay-Z has unveiled a new string to his bow – graphic designer. The erstwhile Shawn Carter has reportedly ‘designed’ the new identity for the basketball team he co-owns, the Brooklyn Nets

The primary logo (above) continues the use of the shield from the team’s previous identity, as the New Jersey Nets, into which the Nets name has been somewhat painfully squished. Rather better is the basketball graphic featuring a large capital B which is carried through to the secondary logo below.

Brand New’s Armin Vit, whose site unveiled the identity yesterday, is, we think it safe to say, not a fan, calling the logo family “technically worthless and embarrassing”. But as sports branding goes, we’ve seen a lot worse and its retro minimalism certainly exploits the hipster associations of all-things Brooklyn right now.

Perhaps Mr Z’s savvy for merchandising and branded clothing (his Rocawear label has been a huge success) can be seen in the T-shirt range that was launched at the same time.

We’re not imagining that Mr Z actually, you know, ‘designed’ the thing himself – Gareth Hague, via Twitter, got in touch to suggest that the work was actually done by Timothy P Morris who has worked a lot with Jay-Z in the past – but his involvement is the latest example of the pop-star-turned-design-guru trend.

Yesterday, we were invited to the RCA’s Innovation Night at which Intel’s Director of Creative Innovation, also known as will.i.am off The Voice, will be sharing his thoughts on whatever it is Intel pay him to do. Mr am (above) was appointed in January 2011, just after Polaroid announced Lady Gaga as its new Creative Director.

So far, the UK has sadly lagged behind in this trend except, of course, in fashion where various poppets have ‘designed’ high street ranges following in the expensively-shod footsteps of Kate Moss at Topshop. And there’s Liam Gallagher’s Pretty Green clothing line.

Surely it’s time for the UK’s pop stars to fire up InDesign and get on board – after all, anyone can be a designer or a creative director can’t they?



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