Tuesday, February 28

Chopper Run to Ballarat, this weekend!

My Aussie mate Buzz's Kick Start Sunday is this weekend... choppers, bobbers and period bikes welcome. Leave your Twinkie at home!

Call him for more details: 0425 802 674.

Monday, February 27

Sunday, February 26

What you doing in Archway Ron?


We were booked to play St John's Tavern (on Junction Road in Archway) on a rainy weeknight sometime in 1989 and as we started the set I thought someone looked familiar in the audience. Of course, Mouse hadn't bothered to tell us that Ronnie Dawson would be coming along and would be joining us for an encore. We did 'Hillybilly Blues' with him and a couple of his other tunes. Someone videotaped the gig but I've never seen it.

Surreal.

Saturday, February 25

Overexposed

My Pan (and Gareth's photos) got another airing in another publication this month. Not saying which one though...

Friday, February 24

Sus-sus-sus-sus-sus


As I sit here laying out issue 26, iTunes is on shuffle in the background. It's strange how certain songs pop up and immediately conjure up a feeling or a memory.

When Conrad asked for this song at the punk rock bar in Tokyo at some ungodly hour in the morning after many, many hours' enjoyment of Japan's frothiest beers, the place erupted. Suddenly a bunch of men of a certain age (and Dean) were taken back to their youth... and that bar is the closest I've experienced to a gig since the seventies.

Brilliant. If I go back to Japan this December, that bar – and great anthems like this – will be a must-do yet again on the itinerary.

This one's for you Con!

The brown bike


Bill Mize built this beautiful '47 a couple of years ago, and we will soon be pulling fingers out and socks up and actually putting it in the magazine.

By the way, a little bird told us that this Knuck may be for sale. If it seriously floats your boat, get in touch with Bill.

Wednesday, February 22

Lorne's Norton

Nice to see a minimalist Norton chop in England. This is Lorne's, organiser of the Custom Motorcycle Show at Beaulieu.

Fifties Ariel frame, Norton engine (Atlas bottom end, Commando top). Looks like fun! Shake it, baby, shake it...

We have a winner!

Thanks for all your entries to the competition (below).

Had a couple of wrong answers, and a few answers left as comments not emails. But the winner is:

Sophorn Sin from Santa Ana, California.

Correct answers were: Issue 5, and Shinya Kimura.

The DVD will be winging its way back to the USA today after its brief stay in chilly England.

Tuesday, February 21

Over a million page views – so who's gonna win the PRIZE?

I don't look at the counter on this blog often, but I did just now and it indicates 1,009,400 individual page views. Not sure what that means, but it sounds like rather a lot.

So to celebrate, one lucky GKM blog reader will receive a brand new, sealed copy of the Lowbrow Customs' excellent "Salt Ghost: Return of the Nitro Express" DVD.

All you have to do to win is answer this two-part question about the magazine:

Which issue of GKM appeared in our first ever blog post in 2008? And who built the bike on its cover?

First correct answer emailed to choppers@greasykulture.com will win the DVD.

Here's a taster:

Square Eyes




I know I'm preaching to the converted, but what I really like about Tyler and Kyle at Lowbrow Customs is that their business has grown organically from their longtime love of motorcycles; they are not some johnny-come-lately scenesters who see their new-found motorcycling bros as a source of income (and believe me there are lots of businesses that fit that description out there.)

They also run a tight ship and have an enviable business ethos: they treat their customers right, don't rip them off and package everything beautifully. Oh, and they are nice guys to boot.

OK, ad over.

During the recent snowy weather, I sat down to a couple of Lowbrow-produced DVDs... the Salt Ghost and the EDR. Both are very watchable, but the EDR film particularly made me yearn for sunny days, long rides and beers with good friends. Even better, I kept spotting familiar faces... Sumo, Walter, Tyler, Jimmy, Caleb, Jeff O, Bill & McGoo... as well as my old tanks on Tyler's Panhead! It's nicely shot, narrated and edited... and is well worth whatever it costs to get it to your door.

Good inspiration for summer... something I need a lot of right now.

Monday, February 20

Pothole Social got really social...



Things got blurry in Jersey just over a week ago at the Pothole Social, hosted by Walter and Kickstart Cycle, and launching the latest issue of GKM, #25.

Hope you all enjoyed it! To everyone who rode to the bar... respect. If it was as cold there as it was here that night, I hope the thermals worked.

Sunday, February 19

Grebo Rock


How good is this... 1971, double denim, steelie high tops, mutton chops and maximum British R&B.

Reckon Dean should cover this with the Black Tibetans.

First GKM shoot, February 2007

I'd been taking photos for the GK website with my trusty (and huge) FujiFilm FinePix 4700 since around 2000, but when I decided to go into print I thought I'd better invest in a 'proper' camera, and bought a Canon 400D.

I flew down to Geelong and shot Buzz and his handbuilt Triumph for the first issue. Five years ago this month.

He ended up on the cover. I really miss that Australian landscape.

Friday, February 17

Nice restored '47 H-D speedo for sale

Conrad has this beautiful '47 speedometer for sale. Original glass and internals; calibrated and tested.

£650 plus shipping.

If you ever follow these on the 'Bay you'll know this is a good price... grab it now if you need one because this will soon be thrown to the wolves!

Thursday, February 16

Your kiss so sweet, your sweat so sour


So harsh. So good.

Was big into GoF for a while when I was young.

Choppers Magazine May 1968

Terry says: "Was diggin' deep and found my first chopper mag. I was still pedaling my 1963 JC Higgins bicycle – that I hung apes and a tiger print banana seat on – when I bought this from the corner drug store. I knew I was onto something. I thought that Triumph was the shit!".

Wednesday, February 15

Thanks Con, thanks Pat


I've known Pat a long, long time. I've known Conrad even longer!

Thanks for your kindness recently chaps. Appreciate it.

Chicken Poo v Heath Robinson




Here ya go Jeff... Benny just sent me these.

And there's the inspiration at the bottom.

Chicken poo for you?


Saw this the other day at Benny's shop and fucking love it.

And now Benny has it up for sale.

You won't get a fresher-from-the-barn 45 than this... or a more authentic krusty kustom.

It was discovered at the back of a chicken coop on a smallholding in Arizona and has an interesting history; it was apparently abandoned by a film company after being used as a prop in the 1967 biker flick 'Barbarians from Beyond'. The owner of the smallholding used it for a while until the early seventies, during which time it appeared in a couple of other bikexploitation movies including 'The Pillagers' (starring a young Harvey Keitel) and 'Bend Me Over Easy, Baby'. When the bike's generator went south in '72, it was loaned to a bar in Phoenix to hang from the ceiling and was finally put to rest in the chicken coop on its return to the owner in '77.

Course it wasn't, but it should have been.

Tuesday, February 14

Shovel chopper for sale (UK)

Yep, it's a proper chopper. Benny built it last year (another one I wish I had the money for) and John's selling it.

If you're interested, email the owner at john.donnelly@parnellproperties.co.uk

Influences: Terry's Panhead

If you have the curent issue, you will have read the feature on Mike Bennett and Terry Godschalk's '37 big-inch flatheads.

I had first seen one of Mike Bennett's bikes in Iron Horse magazine in the mid-nineties, and the style of bikes he was building made a huge impression on me. But I had never made the connection between his friend Terry and this Panhead (above) until Terry sent me scans from issue 158 of Iron Horse. It's him! This bike was also a huge influence on me... as you can, ahem, see.

I continue to be amazed by the series of coincidences that mean I am now talking to the men who built the bikes I was so influenced by in the past. Say what you want about the Internet, but it links like-minded people like nothing else.

Monday, February 13

Been trying to snare this one for a while

Caleb's award-winning Panhead. This and Dave Barker's Knuck were my favourite bikes from last year. Very happy we've finally got a feature for the mag, shot for GKM by the totally top-notch Mark Kawakami.

Saturday, February 11

Friday, February 10

Round the M42








Took a trip to see Benny at the new shop yesterday to finally photograph Zip's bikes. Lynn was there too, bunking off work!

The new place is very atmospheric and full of the usual array of cool metal in various stages of completion. The chicken poo flathead is particularly funky... with original, period-perfect US termites between the tanks.

We're planning a joint GKM/Boneshakers bash soon... stay tuned! Nice to see you gents.