Nile Rodgers, the Strokes’ Albert Hammond Jr., author Fran Lebowitz and more reminisce about the style of the early Seventies in the second installment of 1973: Shaping the Culture, a new video series from Rolling Stone, presented by HBO’s new show Vinyl.
“What’s great about ’73 is that, everybody forgets this, but kind of that pimp look,” Please Kill Me author Legs McNeil says. “That whole kind of Isaac Hayes, Shaft look. And the white guys made glam out of it … You gotta remember that men’s fashions were really ugly. When punk came, it was sort of like, ‘Fuck that.'”
Rodgers talks lovingly about the hottest spot in New York City for clothing at the time: Granny Takes a Trip, the famed London boutique that opened up on St. Marks Place and became the official purveyor of platform boots and other fads of the era.
The mini-doc also looks at the androgyny of clothing at the time thanks to artists like David Bowie and the New York Dolls. “The gender morphing thing really came out of the Sixties,” explains Will Hermes, Rolling Stone contributor and author of Love Goes to Buildings on Fire. “Guys had long hair. So it wasn’t really a great leap to have guys wearing dresses.”
Hammond Jr. says of the often-outrageous fashion of the time, “It was a form of rebellion to dress up in a certain way.”