When reflecting on the idea of rebellion in terms of pop culture and style, The Clash should always be at the very top of the list of examples.
The Clash were already scene fixtures in early days of London punk. Although the torn clothes and leather jackets were not unlike that of their contemporaries, The Clash, led by legendary frontman Joe Strummer, broke from the pack musically, visually and idealistically.
Breaking from the gritty street life inspired songs of early NYC punk, and the sneering apolitical nihilism of the Sex Pistols and other contemporaries, The Clash produces protest music in direct and serious response to issues of the day. This truly launched the Punk underground as a place of social action and revolutionary thought.
In their style, both physically and musically, the band took inspiration from rockabilly, reggae, pop and world music, and infused it with a tangible defiance that was witty and captivating.
Strummer and the other members of the Clash mixed various styles with their roots firmly planted in the counterculture. Notable looks include slick backs molded after the Teddy Boy and Mod cultures of London. Strummer was also one of the first and most notable to introduce the mohawk into popular culture.
As the band progressed, their adaptation of military inspired cuts and messy slick hair came to be as instantly recognizable as their music, which by the early 80s had rocketed from the underground to the mainstream.
Styling is key to achieving these looks, as they are simple and utilitarian by design.
For dirtier, more lived-in looks, a cocktail of Fellow Mineral Spray for grit and Fellow Hybrid Clay for hold will do the trick.
Looking to sport a classic slick back? Work Fellow Strong Pomade directly into the hair, and use a comb to direct the hair and give it some shape. Want it a little looser? Drop the comb and use your fingers.
Experience The Clash at the height of their powers live in Queens at Shea Stadium below.