Tour Laundry Specialist: Slipknot's Stage Clothes Filthiest He's Ever Cleaned | Revolver

Tour Laundry Specialist: Slipknot's Stage Clothes Filthiest He's Ever Cleaned

Hans-Jürgen Topf reveals Iowans' coveralls dirtier than anything from Madonna, Pink, Beyoncé tours
slipknot 2008 PRESS
Slipknot, 2008

A recent New York Times profile took a deep look at the life of Hans-Jürgen Topf, the world's leading expert when it comes to handling the tour laundry of famous musicians around the globe. Topf, who calls himself 'Der Topf,' started a company called Rock 'n' Roll Laundry after devising a system to handle the immense need for wardrobe cleaning as bands make their way from city to city, performing every night in the same clothes. 

Though the paper caught up with him backstage at a U2 gig, Topf has also worked with much heavier bands and claims Slipknot had the filthiest stage wear he's seen in his lengthy career. The Times reports that the Iowa rockers' iconic coveralls were "sprayed with beer, cream and fake blood, and left in garbage bags for three days."


Those stains were added onto what the cleaner calls the most common, which are sweat (no surprise there) and aluminum dust from the wheels of equipment cases when they're carted on stage. Performers who spend a lot of time on their knees or crawling during a show can benefit from the crew putting down mats during load-in, which prevents the dust from settling on the stage floor. 

One detail that might surprise fans is how well-behaved their favorite rock stars are these days. While Topf used to find drugs in the stars' pockets quite often, he tells the paper, "These days, I'm more likely to find an herbal tea bag."