This week, I told Travis that I’d prepared something very special for this time of the Season for everyone visiting here on his ground-breaking, super-cool Website…and here it is:
FROM THE HALL OF FAME LEGENDS ARCHIVES :
A SPECIAL HALLOWEEN FEATURE :
GEORGE BARRIS & THE MUNSTERS CARS ON T.V. !
FROM 1964-1966 one of the hottest shows on TV was THE MUNSTERS ! But did you ever see the “HOT ROD HERMAN” Episode ? Well, I accidentally happened on to it the day I was set to Interview GEORGE BARRIS !
GEORGE GIVES THE REAL STORY on The Munster Koach and The Drag-U-La Car…which he actually drove in this Classic Episode ! (PS: Grandpa Munster makes a cameo appearance especially for our listeners; and, listen for George doing a “wheelie” !!)
PLUS, you’ll find Links to the “ULTIMATE HALLOWEEN SPECIAL” that I’ve prepared for you which includes my “HALLOWEEN FILM RARITIES FOR 2013” , AND , BELA LUGOSI introducing “THE MONSTER MASH MEETS THE HAUNTED HOUSE” ! Simply Click-On-Here and be prepared for a frightfully funtastic experience !
HAPPY HALLOWEEN TO ALL, and I hope you get more Treats than Tricks !
PS: Be sure to pass this Link on to your fiends, er, friends ! “
“Hi to all ! One of the Hall Of Fame’s longest-running members, NORM GRABOWSKI, passed away just a year ago…October 12, 2012, so, in honor of Norm, I pulled out one of his earliest stories from my Archives.
Norm was known as the “Father of the T-Bucket” and he was a friend to all he met, I always called him the “Don Rickles” of the R&C Industry because he had a GREAT sense of humour !
TRULY ONE OF THE FUNNIEST GUYS in the Rod & Custom Industry was the one-and-only NORM GRABOWSKI !
This time, Norm talks about how he got into cars to begin with, and gave me the scoop on the early beginnings of, what would become, the Legendary “Kookie Car”!
While not an artist per se, Jonnie King is the focus of today’s post. If you’ve never been to his site, “Legends Of The Rod & Custom Hall of Fame” then you’re missing out! Jonnie interviews many of the koolest kustom folks and posts the interviews on the site. A few years ago we crossed paths and I’m not sure how we even met but I’m glad that we did! If you don’t know who Jonnie is, here is his site.
One of the newest updates on the site is an interview with Gene Winfield talking about his 2013 777 Award winning clone of his famous Pacifica Econoline Ford Pickup. The original build was done in 1962, and the clone is visually just about the same as the original, but underneath the truck is much more modern. Click here to open that page, the audio will begin automatically.
I’m hoping to talk Jonnie into doing a blog post here for you whenever he has new audio articles up, at the very least, I will do a post like this one and give you links to the good stuff!
See you at a show,
What is your favorite Gene Winfield build? Comment below!
JEFF MYERS – Lives and breathes kustoms, and his personal driver is a layin’ low, chopped ’57 Caddy hardtop, layered in purple candy. His “Premier Body & Paint Shop” in Arkansas City, Kansas is growing a kustom reputation to the level of the nationwide “hot” shop’s in the 50’s and 60’s. Sleds are his game, and ol’ skool kustoms like Dennis McPhail’ ’52 Chevy, and ’56 Chevy 2-dr. prove it. We here at KKOA also dig Jeff’s candy red ’63 Ford cement-slider.
Kool! Why he’s deserving! He dedicated, and many remember watching Jeff hammer his kustom touch on TV’ “Monster Garage” with Starbird, Winfield, and Jessie James, a few years back. Like I begun this with, and have to end it waaay to short, due to page space! Jeff Meyers is 100% kustom, 24-7, a fact you can bet on. He’s made his torch mark, and now he’s certainly deserving of the kool reputation he’s built, and does everyday in his land of Oz Kansas shop.
DICK HUCKANS – Dick is better known to his friend’s and follower’s as “The Bearded 1.” Starting at the age of 14, in a small shop in Van Nuys, California, Dick learned from the best how to do body work and paint. After learning the kustom body & paint trade, Dick moved from L.A. to Oklahoma in 1966 to pursue his famed The Bearded 1 Kustoms career, where he is today. His career leaned more toward his outstanding kustom paint theme’s, and his trick paint work could be found on just about anything thing in racing and kustomizing. From Sox & Martin pro stock championship cars to famed funny Car’s, drag boat’s, slingshot dragster’s, and super modified track cars. But, Dick’ love is the true kustom car, especially the leadsled’s. He’s built many for himself and customers over his 75-+ years, with one of his finest being Jack Walker’ unbelievable clone of Lyle Lake’ famed ’52 Buick The Blue Danube. Recently, Dick was inducted into the Darryl Starbird Hall of Fame & Museum.
RAY ERICKSON – Ray built his kustom career during the hey day of hotrodding in the mid-50’s, when the supreme task was to chop, channel, or section a kemp (car or truck). Remember those days? Born and raised in Salina, Kansas in 1928, Ray, along with his family moved to Kansas City in 1940 just as Ray was turning into a rebel with a cause teenager. Hotrodding was, and still is running through his veins, and in 1955 he was a founding member of the Kansas City Timing Association (KCTA). And, in 1956 he was a key player in hosting the NHRA Drag Racing Nationals. Later Ray would change the club name to the Cranktwisters.” Over the years he would build many hotrods and kustoms (’35 Chevy, ’49 Ford, ’34 Ford, etc.). One being a ’52 Ford, full kustom that he called “Whistle Bait” because it was his wife Joan’ daily driver. With a heavy chop and all the right touch’s it was easy to see why. Ray’ hard work paid off when a radical ’48 Merc he built and tagged the “La Hoya” made a full feature story in Car Craft magazine. Still living in K.C., Ray now chats on the Jalopy Journal H.A.M.B. about the good ol’ days, and many feel has paid his dues to the kustom kulture. So do we here at KKOA. Jalopy Journal article on Ray Kustomrama page on Ray
As of the writing of this post we are 1 week away from the 2013 KKOA Leadsled Spectacular, I hope to see you there!
Each year at the KKOA Leadsled Spectacular 2 new members are inducted into the KKOA Hall Of Fame. Since the show is just a few weeks away I thought I’d take the time to introduce you all to this year’s nominees. There are 9 total, here are the 2nd two on the list, see this post for the 1st two, and see this one for the 2nd two. When I have photos of their work I will show it and when I don’t I will link you to where you can see it.
FRITZ SCHENCK – Fritz was/is influenced by many of the greats of kustomizing, and he particularly likes the radical kustoms of Ed “Big Daddy” Roth. He did a ground-up restoration on Roth’ original “Druid Princess”. and Roth’ “Pepi Bike Hauler, and he has built a perfect clone of Roth’ famed “Outlaw” roadster. However, the car that put him in the kustom spotlight and on many magazine covers, was his one-off original design creation “The Roswell Rod.”
Currently his newest creation is another one-off design, loaded with Fritz tricks and a Starbird style bubble on top. A few years back Fritz and his wife Carrol moved from Long Island, N.Y., to the ouskirts of Kansas City, and now both Fritz’s are busy doing exactly what they want to do! Build one-off kustom show rod creations, and produce how-to-build-kustoms video’s to help other up and comers create their dreams. Truly a complete kustom family.
GENE PIERCE – Fellow KKOA member James Fine felt compelled to notify the KKOA about a unsung hero living in his hometown of South Bend Indiana, and nominate him for a possible induction into the KKOA Hall of Fame. After researching Gene, KKOA has found that he’s not the kind of guy who toots his own horn, but his works speaks for himself. Gene chopped his first Merc when he was 15, and has even been offered a job by another Gene! The legendary Gene Winfield, a offer that he was honored to be asked. He works out of his two-stall shop (just like the good ol’ days), and treats customers with a quoted stick-to price. No hidden costs when they come to pick up their kustom. His credits range from many chopped and kustomized fat-fendered sedan’s and coupe’s, to layin’ low leadsled’s, to Fad-T hotrod roadster’s. Gene is a 100% traditional builder. His quality of work is exceptional, as verified by KKOA Hall of Famer, Mike Alexander (A-Brothers Team) (note: I don’t have any photos of Gene’s work that I know of but I’ll do my best to get some next weekend at the KKOA.)
1 more post tomorrow with the final 3 nominees. See you at a show,
Each year at the KKOA Leadsled Spectacular 2 new members are inducted into the KKOA Hall Of Fame. Since the show is just a few weeks away I thought I’d take the time to introduce you all to this year’s nominees. There are 9 total, here are the 2nd two on the list, see this post for the 1st two. When I have photos of their work I will show it and when I don’t I will link you to where you can see it.
LARRY GROBE, aka: “VooDoo Larry” – VooDoo Larry operates out of Schaumburg, Illinois, and has turned out some of the most original, innovative, unexpected and leading edge Kustoms you’ll ever see.
Larry will do anything from a ground up restoration, to a custom one-of-a-kind kustom or hotrod, to painting and pinstriping that’ll blow your mind and everything in between. With 30 years of experience under his belt it is easy to see Larry has really perfected his unique craft. His reputation is built on turning out hot rods and kustoms that set new boundaries. His attention to detail, gifted craftsmanship, creativity and ever changing pallet of work are renowned with the Old Skool Kustom culture.
Larry is the personification of passion – passion for his work and the Kustom Kulture. He is the president and founder of the VooDoo Kings Car Club, a club that over the past 10 years has grown to membership that now extends to 6 different states. Although easily the King of Kool, Larry Grobe is one of the nicest, most down to earth guys you’ll ever meet.
“Speedy” BILL SMITH – The best way to explain Bill Smith is simply imagine “The Godfather of Hotrodding.” To many & most of his fans & customers it’s “Speedy” Bill, owner and still operator of America’ oldest and largest speed shop, Speedway Motors, located in Lincoln, Nebraska. Founded in 1952, Speedway Motors is a hotrodder’s friend, no matter what year hotrod or kustom you’re building. You want a a-dapt-tor kit, to hook a ’49 Caddie motor to a ’59, as Johnny Cash wailed, “Speedy” Bill probably has one sittin’ on the shelf in the massive warehouse of Speedway Motors. What a career Bill and Joyce Smith has built, and their shinning star on the hill is their Museum of American Speed that opened in 1992. Unbelievable is the best way to describe it. “Speedy” Bill Smith. It would be a honer to have him in the KKOA Hall of Fame.
The following are a couple of photos from a tour of the incredible Smith Collection in the museum at Speedway Motors.
I highly highly highly recommend a tour of the Smith Collection if you ever get the chance. It’s worth whatever drive it takes you to get there.
Each year at the KKOA Leadsled Spectacular 2 new members are inducted into the KKOA Hall Of Fame. Since the show is just a few weeks away I thought I’d take the time to introduce you all to this year’s nominees. There are 9 total, here are the first two on the list. When I have photos of their work I will show it and when I don’t I will link you to where you can see it. KEITH DEAN – Anybody who’s into kustomizing, especially the classic ’49-’51 Mercs knows there’s two famous “Dean’s!” The original rebel without a cause, James Dean, and the world famous kustomizer Dick Dean. Carrying on the torch in his late father’ footsteps, Keith has kept many high end kustoms rolling out the doors of his South End Kustom Shop, in Hemet, California, with many waiting in the wings.
One being the winner of the coveted 2011 KKOA 777 Custom Crown, owned by “Tranney” John Saltsman. A wild, space age ’49 Studebaker Pickup re-named the “Atomitron.” Keith’ gracious personality has offered his shop and time to be the one where the “Memories” 1954 Mercury project kustom is currently being built as a tribute to another late KKOA Hall of Famer Rich Pichette. When completed it will be titled to some lucky kustom kat, with the proceeds going to financially benefit Alzheimer’s Research. Great cause, great guy. Thanks Keith. see photos of the Memories project here
To hear an interview with Keith Dean on Jonnie King’s “Legends of the Rod & Custom Hall Of Fame series click here.
DICK SCULLY – From his early days in the 50’s, customizing and wrenching in his grandmothers garage on wild customs of the “mod” 60’s and 70’s to custom hotrods and leadsleds Dick has been on the bleeding edge of style and innovation. His hands-on approach of fabrication, blown bubble tops, custom grills, stick steering controls, chopping, channeling and sectioning are just some of the things that he tackles willinging. Lacquer paint runs through his veins from when he started doing blends, lace, candies and fades for custom cars, hotrods, and race cars. His asymmetrical signature “ribbon” flames seemed to be his crowning touch and just one of the reasons for his loyal following. Dick’ early days of custom activity let him work solo, or with other great builders on projects that made many, many magazines. Like the “Electra”, the “X-Cel”, and the “Trendero.” The beauty of his career keeps him grounded in what he believes and what he wants to create. The passion for what he creates brings others to him for his talent and vision. Many believe that Dick deserves and belongs with the other great custom car and hot rod builders in the KKOA Hall of Fame.
See some examples of Dick Scully’s work go to Rik Hoving’s site here.
The next two will be early next week, stay tuned! The show goes down in Salina, KS July 25-28, go here to find out more about the show, and go here to see my shots of the show from 2012.