RESPECT. Interview: Chris Koch & Mariano Rivera Talk Impact of The Legendary Yankees Cap

Image Credit: Ayana Rashed for RESPECT. Magazine

On Monday, November 6th, Yankees legend Mariano Rivera and New Era CEO Chris Koch discussed New Era’s newest partnership at the MoMa Design Store. The legendary Yankee cap is one of the notable accessories featured in their “Is Fashion Modern” Exhibit. The Yankee cap is by far the most worldwide signature cap and has become a statement through high-fashion and street-wear. The exhibit will run through January 28th, 2018.

The cap is most notable by this generation and has been shown love from greats like Jay-Z, the late Nelson Mandela, Tom Brady and many more. Could this be the most notable cap of our generation? You can wear the cap at a business meeting and turn around and wear the same cap at a cook-out. Check out some of the images of the MoMa x Yankees Cap x New Era collaboration below.

We also got a chance to catch up with Koch and Rivera as they gave their take on the impact the Yankees cap has had on this generation and the significance of the cap.

Let’s get into the interview below.

RESPECT.: How did the partnership with MoMa come about?

Chris Koch: They contacted us about a year ago, talking about putting together items. Which is basically what this whole exhibit is all about and we were chosen with over 400 items from the curator who boiled it down to like 111 items, that’s basically what its all about. The Yankee cap went from something that had a function being held at a field of play as part of a uniform into actually crossing over into fashion and becoming sort of street-wear. That’s really how the conversation all started with them.

What is your definition of the impact of the Yankee cap for this generation?

Chris Koch: I mean the Yankee cap is iconic. First of all, it’s something that’s so worldwide it’s worn worldwide everybody looks at it a different way. So it could be about the Yankees, it could be about repping your town, it can about Americano, it can be about New York. The NY it’s self has become an iconic logo that is recognized by people in all different countries, all different age groups and all different races. We just think it’s pretty amazing that happened. It’s iconic and because of our relationship with Major League baseball and with the Yankees for so many years. It’s pretty deep and emotional to me, I think everyone feels that way it’s some kind of tie to that NY and whatever it is, its transcended time.

Image Credit: Sports Business Day

Does New Era have any upcoming collaborations on the way?

Chris Koch: We just came off ComplexCon, this weekend with ASAP Ferg which it’s massive. Him and a couple other people did a big concert out there, that was really cool. We have the on-going collab with Chance The Rapper. We will do another one with Lorenzo from Fear Of God and Public School NYC. We’re always looking at what’s next, what’s cutting edge, what’s bleeding edge and how to make it all work and not push the envelope in such a way, that it’s not real. Our brand we always want to keep it authentic, traditional, sport heritage and cross-over into the culture. We never want to lose that.

Image Credit: Ayana Rashed for RESPECT. Magazine

Image Credit: Ayana Rashed for RESPECT. Magazine

Q&A With Marcus Mariana

RESPECT.: What is your definition of the impact of the Yankee Cap?

Marcus Mariana: I mean not only U.S. but worldwide, that NY logo is huge and so I mean I think it’s a worldwide machine. I put it like that, it’s a worldwide.

Do you still wear the Yankee cap?

Marcus Mariana: Not much like 24 years ago, I keep them in a special place and I see them (Laughs).

How many Yankee Caps do you have?

Marcus Mariana: I have a few, I’d say 4.

How do you feel about the Yankees collaboration with MoMa?

Marcus Mariana: I mean this is great, it’s a great event with New Era. It’s amazing having the hat in the MoMa and display it, its nice. Great decision.

Which cap is your favorite?

Marcus Mariana: The original. The best.

Image Credit: Latino Sports

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