Originally used to stamp initials or a family crest onto sealing wax (hence the pinky placement, for easy use), the men’s signet ring has since become a simultaneous symbol of flash and gentlemanly elegance — and embraced by musicians past and present.
The singer was rarely seen without the right-handed signet that bore his family crest. He gave Quincy Jones a similar ring with the Sinatra crest, which Jones still wears.
Most of the King’s jewelry — including his flashy pinky rings — were made by Memphis jeweler Lowell Hays, who traveled with Elvis and created rings in sapphires, rubies and emeralds, his favorite stones.
While the Godfather of Soul was known for having a lot of flash onstage, an oversize gold pinky ring was often the only piece of jewelry that Brown wore while performing in a variety of colorful suits.
Immense diamond-encrusted pinkies are a wardrobe staple of the rapper, who pairs them with gold chains, watches and gilded sunglasses. In 2009, he released “Kiss My Pinky Ring” (a diss track to 50 Cent).
The rapper-producer took a literal approach for the album cover art to his 2012 album Kiss the Ring, sporting what is actually a gigantic diamond and citrine women’s cocktail ring.
“Put yo’ pinky rings up to the moon,” sings Mars in “24K Magic,” whose video shows him wearing a vintage Versace silk shirt, Medusa pendant and a diamond-encrusted pinky ring.