FC St. Pauli and American punk band Descendents announce t-shirt collaboration
The Descendents are fed up. „Generally, we’re not such a political band. We write songs about food and girls and stuff”, says singer Milo Aukerman. “But last year America had a new administration come in that brought in all these policies that were anti-immigration. It got me kind of angry.” The result was “Who We Are”, a powerful protest song released in 2017 that lashes out against racist, sexist and anti-immigrant attitudes. These are themes that matter to the band just as much as they do to St. Pauli – which is why the German football club, who has always had one foot in punk rock, designed a t-shirt together with Descendents. It’s available online now.
The front of the shirt shows the iconic Milo caricature, which has been the band’s mascot since the early eighties, sporting a St. Pauli hoodie. The back features a line from above mentioned song: „Strength in difference / be the resistance / unite for justice / that’s who we are / that’s how I feel”. The Descendents set eyes on the shirt for the first time when their recent European tour brought them to St. Pauli’s hometown of Hamburg. Before their sold-out show at Markthalle later that night, singer Milo Aukerman and bass player Karl Alvarez popped in at the Millerntor stadium. After checking out the pitch, the changing rooms and the player’s tunnel, they also got to see the Music School – a VIP box that is used as rehearsal space for local kids on match-free days. “We learned a lot about how the club started. It’s a great operation and I just like the politics of what they’re trying to do. It’s a very unique combination of sports and political activism”, Milo Aukerman explains. “I just wish we could have seen a game today!”
The Descendents started out in California in 1978. Their debut album “Milo Goes to College” was released in 1982, and even though they disappeared on hiatus several times during their career, they are still considered one of the most influential bands in punk rock. Out of the four members, Bass player Karl Alvarez has the tightest history with FC St. Pauli: In 2010 his second band The Real McKenzies appeared on stage at Millerntor stadium for St. Pauli’s 100th anniversary party. “Working together is great because it means we’re part of something international”, he says. “Through the music scene, an international bunch of kids recognize what St. Pauli stands for.”