Musicians have been getting creative with their merchandise options for years, but the new piece from Bon Iver is up there with the most wonderfully on-brand and altogether eyebrow raising we’ve seen in a while.
Perhaps somewhat tongue-in-cheek, Justin Vernon and co have announced that there will be new merch available for purchase that is made of “the highest quality canvas flannel fabric”. Bon Iver, canvas material… It could only mean one thing. They’re touting flannies and we couldn’t be more ready to chuck one on. Red, custom-made with the symbols featured on the album art making up a pretty bold print, they’re certainly not your average flanno. Sure, there have always been strange and special edition pieces of merch, but now more than ever before the concept of giving away the music and selling the t-shirt is vital. It makes sense then that they fetch a pretty $75USD per shirt – almost 100 of our Australian gold coins over here ($98 of them to be exact).
In an age where musicians don’t make much money from their actual music, special edition pieces of merchandise are almost a must-have around the release of a new album or tour. Very few other bands would be able to reproduce the same idea because the two (that is, Bon Iver and flannelette shirts) kind of go hand in hand.
Much like the album artwork and promotional materials (we’re talking everything from the packaging to the lyric videos to the murals), the print on the shirt was created by Brooklyn-based artist Eric Timothy Carlson and carries that same cryptic typography.
The shirts are in promotion of their latest album, 22, A Million, and already on pre-order, the humble yet inimitable flannies are a very considered marketing move tapping into a very particular niche.