BLACK LABEL SOCIETY - Chapters And Patches Explained
December 9, 2008, 10 years ago
BLACK LABEL SOCIETY has issued the following update:"BLS patches/colors were not made for riding. In fact it is NOT a good idea at all. If you are wearing the BLS colors and approached by a member of a MC (motorcycle club) show them respect and be cool. Let them know that is merely a band and nothing more. If they ask you to remove your colors, do as they say. So be cautious about where you fly the Black Label colors. We don't want to see anyone hurt.
Outside of the Mother Chapter (which is the band itself, the Doom Crew Inc., which is friends and family that work for the band and/or people that ZAKK WYLDE chooses to have close to him)... there are no official chapters of BLS. A Chapter is simply the name that Zakk uses to refer to the many cities, states, countries, provinces, etc... that the legions of BLS fans reside in. BLS fans mean far more to the band to just simply label them fans.
The band knows that their fans are huge supporters of what they do and they want their fans to feel a real sense of belonging to something much bigger and greater than just being a fan of a band. Therefore because of the loyal support BLS fans show the band and each other, BLS chooses to call their fans family members of Black Label and/or chapter members of which ever city (chapter) BLS fans reside in.
As a result of this ideology, anyone who is a loyal supporter of BLS is automatically considered an honorary chapter member of the Black Label Society in whatever city or state they reside in. Simply by living where they live.
Being a supporter and fan of BLS, also includes following a code of ethics and conduct set forth by Zakk about how to treat all things Black Label including how to treat fellow fans. It's as simple as that.
Yes there are many groups of fans that have organized into core groups, and that is awesome! However, they are no more or no less a chapter or a chapter member than any other fan or group of fans that live in that particular city or state who bleeds Black Label.
For various different reasons (some legal and some personal), Zakk, the band, and management, does not recognize any one group of people in any given city or state as the 'official' chapter of that city or state.
BLS is not an organized or official club.
In the eyes of Zakk and the rest of the Mother Chapter and the Doom Crew Inc., every single fan/supporter in every city or state (regardless of affiliations with an organized group or not), honorary represents his/her chapter of fans from that city or state. There is nothing 'official' that anyone in any city or state has to do in order to consider themselves a chapter member.
Just support the band, follow the rules, and be kind and respectful to, and of all fellow BLS fans (i.e. Chapter/Family Members), as well as towards the band and Doom Crew Inc. members. That's it. If you want to organize and have group hangouts, listening parties, road trips, BBQ's or whatever GREAT! The more the merrier! It's all about togetherness, family, fun, and sharing that doesn't exclude other fans from your particular city or state just because they don't belong to your particular organized group or 'clique'.
All fans are honorary chapter members as long as they bleed it! As far as colors go, Zakk retains the personal right to hand out and honor recipients of the band, crew members, family and close friends with 'official' versions of all front and back patches as a personal gift from him. As well as for security reasons, Zakk personally approves all recipients of the 'official' colors and does so at his discretion.
A record is kept of every individual who have received 'official' colors. Therefore, the band and crew know who has them and who doesn't. There is no particular method towards being chosen to be honored with them by Zakk. It is fully at his discretion to determine the rhyme or reason.
Basically if you have to ask why or how one is honored with them (or how to get them from Zakk), then you are already traveling down the wrong path. It's not really about how or why. It's not about following a road map to the colors or to Zakk or following some hidden 'pre-ordained' secret checklist of tasks to complete. It just is what it is.
It is generally assumed in BLS circles that if one bleeds Black Label and respects what BLS stands for, they respect and honor what Zakk has asked to retain as personal to him, meaning that people who ‘Get It' respect what Zakk has created here and only do what he has authorized people to do, and leave the rest to his discretion.
On that note, BLS management has made the decision to allow the sale of the 'fan/supporter' versions of the BLS back patch set and front patch sets (as individual items), as well as a denim vest complete with a full set of 'fan/supporter’ versions of the patches on it. Bravado.com and their affiliates, are the only company that has been licensed to sell these items, and are the only items as far as colors/patches go that have been authorized for sale or purchase. Leather vests can be purchased at any leather goods retailer.
Red Monkey Designs now sells the vest that was designed for Zakk to the public at RedMonkeyDesigns.com.
Seek out a good tailor in your area who works with leather to have your support patches applied. If you believe in Black Label and truly 'Get It', then anything outside of these offerings are off limits, and you as a loyal supporter would respectfully allow Zakk to have and keep at his own discretion.
Much Love to All Family, Friends, and Supporters of the Mighty BLS!"