To most of us, the extent of a man’s jewellery is a wedding ring and a watch. Sure, the rules of masculine adornment are changing quicker than ever, but most guys tend to play a pretty straight bat when it comes to everyday accessories. When it comes to the hip-hop world, the opposite couldn’t be more true, a scene which is explored in the new ICE COLD YouTube documentary series.
The recently released YouTube Originals four-part series explores the history of rapper jewellery, the cultural significance it has and who the tastemakers are today. It also asks the questions you’ve never thought to ask, like why artists spend millions on customised jewellery and how it can help build your reputation as a force in the industry.
The series also touches on the darker side of the business, including the armed robberies of famous jewellers and how to avoid getting killed when you have seven figures hanging off your neck and wrist. It was only last week that Jay-Z was spotted wearing a $4 million watch at a party, a flex that requires more than a bodyguard nearby.
The interview cast is star-studded, including genuinely interesting points of view from Migos, Talib Kweli, A$AP Ferg, and Lil Yachty. They also speak to the OG dons of the rap game, Eric B & Rakim and Slick Rick, as well as getting perspectives from the jewellers to the rich and famous in Ben Baller, Greg Yuna, and Johnny Dang. Each player shares their perspective on the reasons why jewellery is so culturally important and why it has such a strong pull on the hearts of so many.
It’s a strange world of power, personality, and precious metal. If you’ve ever been curious about people, artistry and money behind what can just seem like bling from a distance, the ICE COLD YouTube documentary is definitely worth checking out below.