Words By Danitha Jones (@lifelikeJones)
Earlier this year, you may have heard Dennis “Aganee” Jenkins’ production on Justin Beiber’s hit single “Die In Your Arms.” This Harrisburg, Pennsylvania native started producing records back in 2000 and has since worked with a number of artists including Donnis, Freeway and Meek Mill. Currently signed to Rodney Jerkins’ label Darkchild and a member of Winner’s Circle, a production company based in PA, Aganee is becoming known for his talent behind the boards. But this producer’s beats aren’t the only thing fresh. From Bred 4’s to South Beach Lebron’s, this producer’s collection stays laced.
Where are you from?
I’m from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
How did your environment influence your taste in kicks?
Honestly, it was growing up in 80s watching the dope boys come up and what they rocked. A lot of that stuff is coming back around right now.
What’s the first pair of sneakers you’ve ever owned?
My very first pair of kicks from when I was a young boy was the British Knights. The first pair that really meant something to me was the Bred 4 Jordan.
Exactly how long would you say you’ve been in the sneaker game?
I’ve been back and forth but I can say I really got focused on it these past two years.
Which sneaker got you hooked on building up a collection?
I got hooked around the time the Flu Games game back around. They had re-released them.
Are you familiar with the term “Hype Beast”? What’s your definition of it?
Oh, yeah. Man, that’s them dudes out here that just want to grab a pair for the sake of hiking up the prices. They don’t have a love for the sneaker. I have a genuine love for the sneaker. I love my shoes. I wear my shoes. I rock what I got. These dudes are just copping sneakers to make it impossible for the dudes that want the sneaker. They get them and then throw crazy prices on them and kill the game. They destroyed the game.
What are some other issues within the sneaker community?
Well, for anyone on Instagram who are buying kicks off of other people, it’s kind of like the Craigslist of sneakers. I would suggest that people stay away from that whole trade. The trade thing just never works. I heard of a website called Trusted Kicks that do certified trades where two parties have to send the sneakers in and then they send each party the sneaker.
How safe is trading kicks?
I actually got burned on a couple of trades. I had to chalk the last time up because it was so far away but if you’re close enough for me to ride to come see you, then I’m coming to see you.
How many pairs of sneakers do you own?
Right now, I’m at 75 or 76…that I wear. And then I still have stuff in storage that I don’t wear anymore.
What do you look for when copping a new pair of kicks?
First off, I prefer the sneaker that’s harder to get. I feel like the more exclusive the sneaker, the better. Then I go for history. A lot of sneaker collectors don’t understand the history of the sneaker. Recently, the Kilroys came out and everybody was saying they wanted them. I’m like, “Well, what do you know about the Kilroy Mike’s?” Half of the cats – 60% of the people didn’t know the story behind the Kilroy kick. I ended up breaking it down for them. I like the history of sneakers.
Explain the history to our readers who may not know.
It was back when Jordan had retired. The Jordan 9 had came out and Nike was trying to figure out how they were going to do the advertising for it with Jordan not being on the court. They ended up coming up with this whole campaign with Johnny Kilroy, which was a figure that came to the NBA who was just like devastating the whole league and taking over. It was really Jordan disguised as this guy named Johnny Kilroy. He had an afro. He wore glasses. It was crazy! They had a wild campaign for it where they were interviewing NBA players and it looked real legit. That’s the whole story. It was pretty much a scheme they put together to push those sneakers. The Kilroys are actually a part of a pack called The Alter Ego pack, which is a whole series of IXs. I forget exactly how many but it’s a whole set of them. One came out a few weeks ago with the Knicks colorway.
What’s the most you’ve ever spent on one pair of sneakers?
The most I’ve ever spent was probably about $360. That was for some Bred 4s from the Countdown Pack.
You copped the red Spizikes recently and said there wasn’t any line. What’s that about?
I don’t know. I think people were just sleeping on them because after I copped them and posted a picture, I had a lot of cats hit me up asking if they still had them at the mall. Either cats forgot about them or they seen that post and just thought they were fresh.
How do you feel about standing in line?
[Laughs] I’ve done it. The longest I’ve stood in line would be for about 14 hours for the South Beach Lebron’s. I didn’t even get them that day. I ended up getting them another time.
They didn’t have any left by the time I got up there. It was crazy because where I’m from we’ll do the lines and stuff but at certain stores, it’s hard for them to keep track of who’s in line and where. It’s up to the customers. If you go early in the morning, you got a lot of cats coming from the hood and the trap. They are coming and they might go straight to the front of the line. That ends up causing a bunch of arguments. I’ve seen cats reach for their waist. It’s not even that serious. It gets crazy though. They gave tickets out and you had people rumbling for them.
So how high can the price of sneakers go? Or how high have you seen the price go?
I saw a pair for about $4,800. Those were the Foamposite ParaNormans. They only came out with a few pair. I’m not really crazy about them. The ones I’m trying to get my hands on right now, I can’t find. I’m trying to figure out when Nike is going to release the Galaxy Rookies.
Is there another particular brand we’d find in your collection?
I do the Jordan’s. I do the Lebron’s real heavy. I do the Barkley’s. I rock Foams. I love Foams. Uh, Bo Jackson’s. Neon’s. Penny’s. I love the Penny’s. I don’t do too many brands outside of Nike. That’s just what I prefer.
How did Jordan change the kick game?
It’s funny how you could have a sneaker that I remember. The Bred 4s was the first sneaker I ever owned. It came out in like 89. We’re looking at 24 years later and that same sneaker is still hot commodity. You can still look at that sneaker and say how fly it is. It’s not too many things you can take from 24 years ago. You have to take your hat off to the creator of them joints, Tinker Hatfield. If you pay attention to it, a lot of cats favorite Jordan sneakers are the ones that he designed.
What advice do you have for fellow Sneaker Heads?
If you catch a good deal, go for it. Be weary of the trade of sneakers. If you’re starting off, start off light. If you’re not in the game yet, I suggest you pay attention to blogs like KicksAddict.com to see what’s hot and what’s not. And try to get the joints that are harder to get.