Levi’s inspired by Louisville’s 1980s underground music scene for latest collection


The biggest name in jeans is using Louisville’s music scene as inspiration for a new clothing collection.

Levi’s Vintage Clothing’s new Fall/Winter collection is called “No Fun in 1980’s Louisville,” and is a tribute to Louisville underground music scene during the decade, which Levi’s says later inspired the grunge movement.

There’s an entire section on the Levi’s Vintage Clothing website that’s dedicated to the Louisville clothing collection, as well as several Instagram posts, explaining in detail why the time period in the city was so inspiring for current fashion trends.

“In the early 1980s, deep within the teenage bedrooms of Louisville, Kentucky, a new sound was taking shape,” the Levi’s site reads. “Teenagers were emerging from the local punk and hardcore scenes and forming bands. What they shared was an unorthodox songwriting approach and an uncompromising attitude. Their music became the driving influence of ’90s post-rock — paving the way for Seattle’s transformative grunge scene.

On several occasions, these Louisville bands seemed ready to break out and become the next big thing. But an unwillingness to compromise kept them just below the surface, solidifying their place in music history as true underground originals.”


On Instagram, the company credits the Louisville Underground Music Archive— or LUMA— with putting them in contact with Louisville’s music community.

While the collection puts the spotlight on Louisville fashion and music, several locals have pointed out the irony that the bands of that era probably couldn’t afford clothes from the LVC collection- which can cost hundreds of dollars.

Levi’s says that the bands’ uniform of choice in that era were “‘80s Levi’s 501 Jeans mixed with strong graphic elements and DIY attitude.”

As for which bands specifically inspired the new Fall/Winter collection, Levi’s never names them specifically. WAVE 3 News anchor Brian Shlonsky’s research — coupled with the suggestions from several people in Louisville’s music scene — have cited Slint and their album Spiderland, along with Squirrel Bait and Kinghorse were likely major inspirations from that time period.

The No Fun collection can be viewed here.

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