Nobody likes a gatekeeper. Let’s get that out of the way up top. If you like a T-shirt, wear it. Can’t name a single track off of Disintegration but still like the look of a Cure tee? Who cares, go for it. Life’s short, wear what you want. That said, a new poll suggests that not everyone’s feeling as generous as we are about all this. In fact, some band T-shirt aficionados have some pretty strict rules about who should and should not be wearing band tees.
On average, music fans think you should know at least ten songs by a band before you wear their merch. Fans of folk, K-pop and and jazz have even higher standards, saying you should know at least 13 songs if you’re gonna wear a shirt.
The survey was held by Rush Order Tees, a merch site, and surveyed just over a thousand people about their band T-shirt beliefs. Some of the results were sensible enough, but others were just flat out wrong. For example, 43.5 percent of respondents said you should buy the shirt before the concert to wear at the concert, which is just tacky. You never wear a band T-shirt to the band’s show! Come on.
Heavy metal fans had the biggest band tee collections, with an average of 17 band tees. But punk fans spent the most money on their collection, saying their total haul ran around $597 on average.
AC/DC was the most popular band among merch heads, followed by Aerosmith, Queen, Pink Floyd and Green Day. Modern pop acts like Taylor Swift, Adele and Justin Bieber were lower on the list, but their time may be coming, since about half of all the respondents say they’re inclined to buy a shirt after a beloved artist’s passing.
Well, that’s all very interesting but, again, we can’t stress this enough: don’t worry about it. T-shirts are made to be worn and, honestly, it’s hard to imagine the bands themselves caring to much about whether or not you like them if you’re rocking their merch. Just don’t wear the band shirt to the concert. We’re not animals.