Besides a face tattoo of your favorite band, rock T-shirts offer the best combination of artwork and advertising, acting like a membership badge that confers insider status. Some of the earliest T-shirts made to celebrate a musician were produced by Elvis Presley’s fan clubs during the late 1950s, just as the T-shirt was becoming an emblematic style choice for rebellious teenagers.

As rock-n-roll music spread, the 1959 invention of plastisol (a durable ink designed for use on fabric) cemented the concert T-shirt’s place in history. San Francisco-based promoter Bill Graham was one of the first to recognize the rock tee’s moneymaking potential toward the end of the 1960s, when he started printing shirts for popular West Coast acts like Jefferson Airplane.

But the golden era of the rock-n-roll T-shirt really began in the 1970s, as they evolved from free swag made for a band and its crew to a collectible piece of merchandise every fan needed. During the following decades, shirts were sold at every major show and tour, typically featuring imagery that let fans easily identify themselves as followers of an artist and their music. Groups like the Grateful Dead and Pink Floyd had shirts that showcased psychedelia; punk acts like the Ramones, the Clash, and Sex Pistols went for an anarchist, DIY look; T-shirts for Ozzie Osborne, Mötley Crüe, and the Misfits featured darker and more violent graphics.

By the 1980s, fans of popular bands like the Rolling Stones, AC/DC, Van Halen, Journey, and Joan Jett & the Blackhearts all wanted their favorite artist’s faces emblazoned across their chests, as did those who liked music as diverse as Kiss, Madonna, Michael Jackson, Metallica, and David Bowie. Today, shirts for artists like Iron Maiden, the Police, and Nirvana continue to draw top dollar due to their powerful graphics and rabid fan-base. But for a true music geek, the holy grail is a concert shirt from a show you’ve actually seen in person; while many retailers make reproduction shirts, such knockoffs will always lack the “I was there” power of an authentic vintage rock shirt.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

MyVintageVogue

MyVintageVogue

The history of 20th-century women’s fashion largely played out in the pages of magazines such as “Harper’s Ba… [read review or visit site]

Remember Eddie Cochran

Remember Eddie Cochran

Eddie Cochran died in 1960 at the age of 21, but his legacy lives on at Remember Eddie Cochran. The site pays tribu… [read review or visit site]

The Black Tie Guide

The Black Tie Guide

Peter Marshall became an authority on formalwear out of necessity — he needed a tux to wear on the maiden transat… [read review or visit site]

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

The Fashion Columbia Study Collection (FCSC) is the digital home of the Columbia College Chicago’s fashion archiv… [read review or visit site]

Fillmore and Avalon Collection

Fillmore and Avalon Collection

Wish you'd visited San Francisco in the late 1960s? Get a quick hit with this comprehensive collection of psychedel… [read review or visit site]

1960s Fashion and Textiles

1960s Fashion and Textiles

Put on your go-go boots and check out this wavy, groovy tribute to 1960s fashion and textiles, courtesy of the Vict… [read review or visit site]

Dylanstubs.com

Dylanstubs.com

Hey babe, check out this database of over 2,900 Bob Dylan ticket stubs and concert posters, assembled with the help… [read review or visit site]

Vintage Fashion Guild

Vintage Fashion Guild

The VFG is a non-profit international educational organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of vinta… [read review or visit site]

Fashion-Era

Fashion-Era

Bursting at the seams with content, this site contains hundreds of pages of fashion and costume history, including … [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

Agnostic Front Eliminator Tour 1986 Tshirt Original Rare Vintage Hardcore NyhcCro Mags Original Down But Not Out 89 Tour Shirt Rare Nyhc Vintage CromagsBad Brains 1988 Tour Shirt Vintage Original Nyhc Cromags Agnostic Front PunkButthole Surfers Vintage Tour Shirt Large Nirvana Melvins Jesus LizardOriginal Vintage 1988 Metallica Justice Tour Concert T Shirt L Soft ThinVintage 80s 1989 Metallica Damage Inc Tour Thrash Metal Pushead T-shirt SlayerVintage 1990's Slayer Live Undead Concert T Shirt Size Large *rare*Original Vintage Vintage 1991 Slayer T Shirt 90's Thrash Metal Tour Hell AwaitsBlack Sabbath Tour T Shirt Guns N' Roses Iron Maiden Motorhead Metal Anthrax VtgDanzig Not Of This World 1988 Tour Shirt Original Rare Vintage Samhain MisfitsOriginal Vintage Boston Rock Band 1979 Us Tour Concert T Shirt SmallLed Zeppelin Jimmy Page Vintage 1970's-80's Concert T Shirt Screen Stars SmallNapalm Death Original Uk / European Tour 1990 Shirt Tourshirt Unworn Size XlMetallica And Justice For All Damaged Justice Vintage Concert 1988 T Shirt LargeMetallica Vintage Tee Shirt 90's Tour Concert Unforgiven Xl PusheadVintage Rare! Mint! 1980s 1981 The Rolling Stones Dragon Stadium Concert T ShirtVtg 90s Metallica Unforgiven Pushead Tour T-shirtVintage Iron Maiden Tour T-shirt Original Rock Concert Seventh Son 80sMetallica Damaged Justice Tour Shirt Pushead Vintage Tshirt Original 1988 Metal Vintage 1989 Rolling Stones Steel Wheels Tour T-shirtLife Of Agony 1994 Tour Shirt Rare Pit Action Required Screaming Trees Vintage 80s Tour T Shirt Large Nirvana Sub Pop Mudhoney 1989Vintage Metallica 1992 Pushead Rock Concert Damage Inc T-shirt Xlarge Exc. Cond.The Who-american Tour '82-original Vintage 1982 Concert 3/4 Sleeve T-shirt-medSonic Youth Vtg Uberschall 1991 Nirvana Disappear Shirt Traci Lords 90s TourVtg 90s 1993 Blur Turn Up Pop Skin Tour Band Concert T-shirt Oasis Dinosaur Jr***rare**** Kylie Minogue Genuine Original Enjoy Yourself Uk Tour Tshirt 1990Led Zeppelin Rare Vintage Original 1977 Us Tour Concert T Shirt Size MediumVintage 1990 Testament Concert T Shirt Size Large *rare* Cannibal Corpse Og 1994 Tour Shirt Immolation Suffocation Obituary Atheist BloodVintage Marilyn Manson "bigger Than Satan" Tour T Shirt Great ConditionMelvins Vintage Tour T Shirt Screen Stars Nirvana 1987 Sonic Youth MudhoneyMotorhead Sacrifice Vintage T-shirt Tour 1995Vintage Dio 1984 Tour T Shirt Sm Holy Diver Black Sabbath Death The Sound Of Perseverance Tour Shirt 1998 Xl Morbid Angel Deicide MetalRare Vintage 90s Marilyn Manson Antichrist Superstar T-shirt Sz Xl Tour ConcertGreen Day Vintage Dookie Tour T Shirt 90s Nirvana Offspring 1994Melvins Stoner Witch Vintage Shirt Tour Shirt Top! Unworn L@@k Mid 90s Size LVintage Def Leppard 1988 Hysteria Tour T Shirt MdCathedral Vintage Tour Longsleeve Bolt Thrower Unleashed Paradise Lost Shirt RarVtg Ozzy Osbourne Tour T Shirt Guns N' Roses Iron Maiden Motorhead Metal AnthraxRare Vintage 90s Marilyn Manson Rock Is Dead T-shirt Xl Mechanical Animals TourRolling Stones Vintage Black Tour T-shirt From 1994 Halloween Tour In OaklandVintage Metallica Tour T-shirt Original Rock Concert 80s And Justice For AllVintage Early 90s Slayer Slaytanic Wehrmacht World Sacrifice Tour 1989 T-shirtVtg Red Hot Chili Peppers Tour T Shirt Grunge Nirvana Alice In Chains Pearl JamVintage Anthrax Tour T-shirt Original Rock Concert Road To Euphoria 80sVintage Nirvana Sound Garden Concert Tour Come Stand Me Up T Shirt Xl 100% Cot Rare Vintage 1996 Marilyn Manson T-shirt Sz L Tour Concert Nine Inch Nails KornIron Maiden Ed Hunter Tour Us Leg Size M T-shirt Mint Rare Front/back PrintBeat Happening Vintage 80s Tour T Shirt Nirvana Sonic Youth Fugazi K RecordsVintage Pink Floyd 1987 Momentary Lapse Of Reason Tour Black T-shirtHelmet Vintage Tour Shirt Nirvana Jesus Lizard Melvins Band 90sVintage Guns N' Roses Use Your Illusion Tour 1991-1992 T-shirt Xl Vintage Ozzy Osbourne 1992 Tattoos T-shirt Allover Tour Concert T-shirtOriginal Vintage 1981 Journey Escape Tour Concert T-shirt Baseball Jersey Vintage Distressed Metallica Never Land Tour Shirt Xl Metal Thrash Fear Of God Prince Concert T-shirt. 1999 Tour, Size Medium Rare Vintage 1980's Van Halen Worldwide Tour 1981' Rock Band Jersey T-shirt Sz SPogues 1989 Usa Tour Shirt Vintage Original Shane Macgowan Dropkick Murphys Punk