2/7/2018 Update: Hi guys, I wrote this in 2015 on another autograph collecting site but I am wanting to move it here, as I feel this is where it's rightful home should be. I get comments somewhat often and I'd rather that traffic come here. I have also updated it for the first time in a few years, and will likely keep it updated more often here. So here it goes...
Over the past several years, I have been compiling authentic exemplars, and working hard to put them within a specific date range. This gives us a nice way of seeing how the band's signatures have looked/evolved over time. It's also incredibly interesting to me, which is why I enjoy putting these things together. I have studied and collected autographs for over a decade, and with Blink being my favorite band I thought there needed to be some sort of topic on this, for current collectors, future collectors, and just basic historical documentation.
If you have anything signed by anyone in the band, please post it, along with the date if possible. If you got it signed personally, a description of the scene is beneficial. (i.e. VIP experience, rushed crowd, sitting at a table signing, etc.)
My primary focus is going to be Mark, Tom, and Travis. There will also be examples from original drummer Scott Raynor, and current guitarist Matt Skiba.
Let's start with Tom. (For each of the members of the band I have put together a giant compilation of authentic signatures, accompanied by the year.) Tom has gone through several different signature styles. For most of the earlier years he would sign "Tom Blink", Usually you can just make out the "T" and the "B" as it is quite sloppy, but he consistently signed this way from 1997-2002ish. Here is a nicer example of this:
Here is an example @daveyjones provided from May, 1996:
Around 2002-2003 we start seeing different signature styles from Tom. Some that resemble "TD" (which will eventually become his main signature), some as crazy as drawing "tom" out of dicks:
Around 2006, when "Angels & Airwaves" was formed, Tom decided to shorten his sig. The result was a "T". What a great autograph! LOL. Here is an example of a 2006 Tom autograph, on a "We Don't Need To Whisper" pre-ordered CD:
Thankfully this didn't last too long, and shortly after we started seeing his "TD" signature. There are a few variations of this "TD", including "TD AVA", "TD 182". Here are some nice 2011 autographs:
It stays this way, until 2013 when we see a new variation appear. This one I simply call the "Tom Doodle", in which case he writes TOM, and then creates a little stick figure in the middle, it's very cool:
Currently, Tom signs with the "TD" as well as the "Tom Doodle". He is very aware of the item being signed, if it is a Blink cd, he often will write "TD 182", sometimes he will date items, ex: "TD 2017". His new company is "To The Stars", sometimes he will add that as a line to his signature. He has released several books, and has had quite a few book signings. At the signings people get the simple "TD" autograph, but if you order a personalized copy from the website, you might get the full out "Tom Doodle":
Another funny thing about Tom, is that sometimes when he is signing a picture of himself, he likes to draw on himself. Here are a few funny examples:
Here is the full compilation I created for Tom (click to enlarge), the dates are below the pictures. Once again, if you have any signed items I would love to see them:
Next let's talk about Mark Hoppus. Mark's autograph has been fairly consistent throughout the years, although he did go through a very odd signature faze around 2001. From the early days of Blink all the way through 2001-ish, Mark would simply write "Mark Hoppus", "Mark", or "Mark 182". Here is an example from 1995 that @daveyjones provided, Davey said Mark signed "Mark Hoppus" consistently through spring of 1996, before switching to "Mark 182".
Here is a nice prime "Mark 182" example from 1999:
Suddenly around 2001 we start seeing this super weird signature from Mark that looks nothing like his previous (or current) signature. It's a weird "MH" with a "star" and "182" underneath it. Here is an example of it:
I would love to ask him why the sudden change! Regardless, it didn't last long. By the end of 2003 he was back to his old signature style, this time adding "Hoppus" to the end regularly (instead of "Mark 182"). Ever since the revert back to his "normal" signature, it has stayed pretty consistent from 2003 to present time. Here is a 2006 signature of Mark's:
And here is a 2015 Signature:
Sometimes Mark will add "blink-182" (always a lower case “b”!) to his signature as seen above, other times he will write the year, but most of the time it's just "Mark Hoppus".
Here is the compilation of Mark's signatures I put together:
Last we have my favorite member of the band: Travis Barker. Travis joined Blink-182 towards the end of 1998, and in 1999 became their full-time drummer. Travis has a few variations of his autograph, but for the most part he has always just written: "travis". Here is an awesome signature from 1999:
Eventually he made it slightly cooler, it flowed much more quickly, there were capital letters added, and the "S" at the end became a "$" sign, here's a nice sig later in 1999:
From 2000-2001, (likely due to having to sign so much IMO), Travis developed a "short sig", which essentially is "t-----". Here are a few examples from 2000-2001:
In 2002 he resorts back to his "tRAVi$" sig as seen here:
Around 2003, he starts putting the "R" backwards, (his signature is basically the same as this today):
Around 2011-2012 he went back to the "short sig" for some reason, here are a few examples:
BUT, from 2013 to currently, he's back to normal long "travi$" signature (most of the time, I HAVE seen him do the short sig on the recent California 2017 tour posters). Here's a 2015 signature:
Here is the timeline I put together for Travis:
Here are some AUTHENTIC examples of Blink albums, signed in their correct time period (i.e. not a Cheshire Cat album someone got signed last week):
(Scott Raynor instead of Travis)
(Scott Raynor instead of Travis)
(TOYPAJ is often signed on the back, due to the black front cover. To this day I still see them sign the back sometimes)
(Skiba instead of Tom)
(Skiba instead of Tom)
Here are some AUTHENTIC items signed by Mark/Tom/Travis throughout the years:
2002 TOYPAJ Promo (Notice Mark has switched to MHSTAR sig)
2002 Xbox signed by Blink/Green Day. You can actually see them sign these here, and Mark makes fun of Tom's horrible signature:
2004 Tour Poster:
2011 Tour Poster:
2013 Untitled Reunion Show Poster. (Given to VIPs):
2013 Setlist (Tom Doodle):
Here are some AUTHENTIC "Angels and Airwaves" and "+44" items signed in their correct time period:
2007 i-Empire: (Matt Wachter replaced Ryan Sinn)
2011 Love 2: (Atom had left, these are often signed by Ilan as he toured the album)
2006 Cliff Diving 7":
+44 Album + promo poster:
Another +44 album, this one signed on the inside cover. A lot of +44 albums are signed on the inside, sometimes a few band members would sign the front, some the inside, some the cd, etc. It's random! Mark added "+44" inscription on some which I enjoy:
In regards to Boxcar Racer, I have NEVER seen one signed album sleeve that was signed in 2002 by the band. Recently Tom has re-issued the album on vinyl, and had signed copies on his website so you may see some of those. But a signed BCR cd would be extremely rare, and especially if it was signed by the full band back in the day. Here a few BCR items that are authentic from that time period, Travis had a short "T$" signature briefly:
(Travis signed this twice)
Here is what the 2017 Vinyl signed by Tom will look like:
Here is a CD signed in 2017:
Now that we've gone through Tom, Mark, and Travis's autographs, I want to mention a few important things as well as exhibit some forgeries:
*Fully signed Blink CDs/vinyl/photos are pretty rare--photos especially. Most of the authentic photos you will see signed are specific promo photos that were handed out, or for contest winners,etc.
*If you are looking for something signed by Tom/Mark/Travis your best bet is the 2012, 2013, 2014 X-mas Posters, these are usually affordable and if you don't like the "Xmas theme", simply cut off the autographs at the bottom and matte them with your favorite picture of Blink. (see example of mine below). Other options would be 2004 Disaster tour posters, and 2013 Untitled posters.
Here is a 2012 X-mas poster I had, where I cut off the autographs at the bottom, and used them to make a cool display that wasn't X-mas themed:
*If you are looking for something signed by Travis/Mark/Skiba, your best bet is the California cds/vinyl/drumheads sold during California pre-orders.
*The band hardly ever "hung out" publicly, so it's not like you were going to walk into a restaurant and see all 3 sitting there and have them sign something. Backstage passes at a show, or some sort of promo were about your only shot at getting all 3 at once. (Travis says in his book that after his plane crash/recovery him and Tom went to lunch and Tom said "This is the first time we've done this...")
*Out of the 3, Travis signs the most.
*Until recently, Tom was a very hard signature to obtain, other than through specific promotions via Blink 182/Angels & Airwaves/MacBeth website.
*Mark signs a few here and there, but overall is a fairly rare signature.
*All 3 have their own companies (Famous Stars & Straps, To The Stars, HMNIM), occasionally you can get signed stuff directly from these places. (Tom/Travis usually have signed books for sale.)
*Travis DOES NOT FLY, he does take the Queen Elizabeth to the UK occasionally for a tour, but if you see "signed" stuff for sale from Switzerland/Australia/etc. be incredibly skeptical!
Now onto the FORGERIES. There are thousands of forgeries sold on eBay every single day. Some basic rules of thumb for buying autographs online in general:
* If it seems too good to be true, it is
*ANYONE can create a bogus "COA"
*"Proof Pix" usually don't prove ANYTHING
*Always pay attention to the SIGNATURES, not the paperwork that comes with them
I have seen all types of Blink fakes, ranging from flatout laughable, to halfway decent attempts. One of the ways scammers like to make a quick buck, is to grab all their old CDs, scribble on them, and list them as being "signed", so be incredibly weary of signed cheap CDs.
Here is an example of someone who scribbled on their "Enema of The State" cd and sold it on eBay:
With forgeries in general, you can tell when something is "unnatural" for the forger. Typically it results in a very slow (and thick as a result) signature, often shaky, and just malformed. Here is an example of a Tom Delonge Forgery (and all of AVA) that is just awful and malformed. You can see how "shaky" it is (because it is not a natural motion for the forger):
Here are a few more AVA WDNTW forgeries, I confirmed these with both Atom/Ryan Sinn:
Here is a 100% forgery "certified" by Global Authentics (who routinely "certifies" nothing but awful Blink fakes):
Here is a fake Neighborhoods cd:
Be incredibly cautious of guitars/instruments signed by "the band". Folks it's very hard to run into these people, much less all 3, oh and you just *happen* to be carrying around a giant brand new guitar or drumhead. Most authentic guitars I've seen were radio station giveaways, or some sort of promo. Here are forgeries on a guitar:
My hope is that you find this post beneficial, or at least somewhat interesting. If anyone has any examples to share, I would love to see them. If anyone has any questions please let me know. Thanks for taking the time to read, and hopefully this will be a good reference point for current/future Blink collectors!