Clive Davis is obviously one of the most notable figures in the last 50 years of popular music. The man who guided the careers of everyone from Janis Joplin to Alicia Keys was out and about during the start of New York Fashion Week 2015 and he spoke to rolling out about music, fashion and why he loves legendary supermodel Beverly Johnson.
“Beverly Johnson is a great personal friend of mine for about 20-25 years,” Davis explained. “Somebody who has helped and been at the forefront of lowering any barrier based on any kind of discrimination and fighting the battle as graciously and with such dignity as Beverly has done, is special.”
Davis has watched as music and fashion have become almost inextricably linked. This isn’t exactly a new phenomenon: the counterculture of the 60s was as much about a certain look as it was psychedelic music; the disco era is forever connected to platform shoes and leisure suits, and of course; hip-hop has revolutionized the way that we dress as much as the way that produce and record. But to Davis, watching high fashion merge with pop music has been a joy to behold. And he feels that both sides of the spectrum have been elevated by that correlation.
He said, “I love the fact that fashion and music have combined so meaningfully as of late. Never to trivialize music, but to do it in a way that shows the importance of music in everybody’s life. Whether it’s in solitude or whether it’s in company or even if it’s in fashion.”
Artists like Kanye West and A$AP Rocky have been well-documented fashion enthusiasts for years, and rappers launching clothing lines have been fairly standard since the mid-1990s. Davis has watched it all. The 83-year-old doesn’t pretend to be as knowledgeable and invested in fashion as he is in music, but he’s not out of the loop. So, what designer is Clive Davis most excited to see this year? The mogul is keeping mum.
“I’ve got a lot of friends that are designers!” he said, before adding: “I don’t always attend the Fashion Week events—although I am fashionably aware!”