This Merch Collection Pays Homage To All Your Fave Songs Of 2017

2017 is the Year of Merch. What was once proof that you saw your favorite band in concert has now become an entire industry itself. Now, there's merch for bands, for brands, for restaurants... Basically, if you can stan for it, you can wear it. And as longtime advocates of fanning out for the things you care about, we've welcomed this trend with open arms.

Genius, the annotation-turned-source-of-everything-music site, understands the importance of fandom more than anyone else. Earlier this year, it released a merch collection dedicated to the year 1997, which paid homage to everyone from Fiona Apple to Biggie. Now, it's back with a new capsule that's all about the songs that made 2017 bearable.

"We wanted to reflect the year in music by covering a range of genres, vibes, and lyrical styles," explains Lila Murphy, Genius' creative lead. "We wanted to do an homage to the artists, their lyrics, and their connection with Genius. Our artist interviews and annotations from our community have really allowed us to bring to life the stories behind these songs." Their final selection is a perfect snapshot of the year in music featuring SZA, Kendrick Lamar, Calvin Harris and Frank Ocean, Lil Uzi Vert, and yes, Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee. All the designs are inspired by lyrics in the songs, taking the graphics beyond your usual merch look of artist portraits or cover art. Instead, the designs are cool enough to stand on their own — separated from the fandom that inspired them — an important requirement for the new-wave of merch.

Murphy adds: "I think the appeal of modern-day merch depends on the cultural relevance and freshness of the items and designs. The bar is constantly being raised for artists and the industry to meet the demands and desires of the fans." And after this collection, consider the bar hella high.

Photo: Franey Miller.
Left Stroke/Right Stroke Longsleeve
Inspired by Kendrick Lamar’s “HUMBLE.”

"Kendrick is a certified GOAT when it comes to lyricism, so we weren’t surprised to see “HUMBLE.” have some of the top-viewed lyrics on Genius this year," explained Murphy.
Genius Left Stroke/Right Stroke Longsleeve, $50.00 Buy
Photo: Franey Miller.
Dead Presidents Hoodie
Inspired by Lil Uzi Vert’s “XO TOUR Llif3.”

Murphy says: "TM88, the producer of “XO Tour Llif3,” broke down the often-misunderstood line “all my friends are dead” on our Deconstructed series." (The answer may surprise you!)
Genius Dead Presidents Hoodie, $60.00 Buy
El Metal Tee
Inspired by Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee’s “Despacito.”

Love it or hate it, Despacito was definitely the song of the year. "[The song] became the #1 song of all time on Genius, and we did a Verified interview with Luis Fonsi that really elucidated the translation of the lyrics," Murphy revealed. If you don't speak Spanish, well now you know what to do.
Genius El Metal Tee, $30.00 Buy
Photo: Franey Miller.
Saturday Sunday Longsleeve
Inspired by SZA’s “The Weekend.”

Who doesn't love SZA? "SZA has been so major this year, and we shot a really fun IRL episode riding horses with her," Murphy says. We're not surprised her amazing album CTRL earned her five grammy nominations.
Genius Saturday Sunday Longsleeve, $50.00 Buy
Garçon Tee
Inspired by Calvin Harris & Frank Ocean’s “Slide.”

The ever elusive Frank Ocean "signed onto Genius," and left an annotation to explain his enigmatic lyric on 'Slide. There are rumors he's finished another album, which we'll happily wait forever for.
Genius Garçon Tee, $30.00 Buy
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