The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ryan, Jan 2, 2012.
artist... we talk about his work over on this side of the country all the time.
Ryan, thanks! I just heard of Brad probably in the past few years on here and then saw that blue AD pickup he did in Custom Truck magazine, then I just saw the two parts he did with Bill Hines on MF6 and then read the other post. It was a lot to take in! But this dude is talented, the kind of dude I would sweep shop floors for just to learn from. I am glad he is getting the recognition he deserves!
Very well said Ryan. It's sad to think of extremely talented guys questioning their place in the rat race. Being a customizer/builder is deffinately a life that looks sweeter looking in than looking out. I knew from the time that I was around 5 years old that I wanted to be in the custom world, be it cars, bikes, furniture, or custom crayons for that matter. I worked towards the goal of having my own custom shop and working it fulltime for many years. I opened Violent Choppers in 2002 and had always heard that if a small buisness can survive through the first 2 years, that it was likely to be a success. The first 5 years of my buisness the worked flowed in much faster that I could pump it out, so naturally, I thought I had it whipped!! With todays economy, and the replacement of craftsman with motor skills, with electronically controlled gadgets, it is deffinately much harder for the blue collar man to follow through with his dreams. I know that personally, I'm in too deep to turn back now, so I may as well throw some more coal on the fire!
Man just read this whole thread and the link to the one Brad started. Tha man is a great guy. I go pretty far back with him he is very close friend and a fellow Beatnik. Brad is pretty much family to me. We may not talk all the time but when we do it's like no time has passed that's a true friend to me. He has an amazing talent you should see the paintings he's done with old house paint it amazing
Here's a pic of the mural he did on the wall behind his shop pretty fucking Kool👍
mural he did on the block wall behing
You have talent stranger, keep up the great work...
May I say at this point in his life getting his head straight should be first and foremost. The cars will still be there when he's ready. Take it one day at a time and go from there. Healing is different for each person, hang in there, good luck and take care.
Keepin' It Classy, excellent reading.
I have been meaning to chime in here but the words have seemed just out of reach. It was kinda hard to read all the nice things people have said. All I can say is thank you. Thanks to all my friends that put up with the bullshit. I have never lost any one I really loved. It was a bad trip for me. Game changer fer sure. Every ones got a story.. Here is one about a piece of shit truck...
After Carmen was murdered I DID think about hanging it up. Literly... The pain I felt was unreal. Not the kind you get when you smack yer finger with a hammer, or get a little piece of metal in yer eye, or even when you burn your self with a torch. It was different. Like an atomic bomb detonated in yer lap. More than I could take. A suicide plan was in order. I was so sad and angry and I just wanted out. I wanted to just hang myself from the rafters in the shop. I didnt want to live my life just to see my idols, friends and family die, and at the time it didnt seem selfish. Old cars are so gay and I am done. But I thought that style looks so weak and plus it would just make the shop creepy and fucked for everyone forever.
I drove my fastback to Sacramento and back to Los Angeles several times over and over. Just lost. As soon as I got in to town Id just turn around and drive back. George Barris called and told me stories about Shirley and tried to help but at the time it didnt. It all had something to do with cars and nothing ANYONE was saying was helping. I felt so uncomfortable, everywhere and it was even hard just to drive my car and look over and see the empty passenger seat, and know she will never be sitting there again. Bill Hines called and told me you gotta just stay in the garage and work. Work through it. Fuck that, I couldnt even listen to music. Even the lyrics in some oldies you have heard forever seemed too heavy. Gnarly for me like they were fucking with me.
I finally settled at my grandparents farm in northern California. And like most farms, on this farm there was a truck. (E,I,E,I,O) I would just go throw rocks at it. Sit and stare at it. I hated the fact that I wasted my life fixing garbage like it. And now I am looking for a way out. I realized this piece of shit truck has been dead longer than I have been alive. Rotting behind an old barn. Probably worked hard its whole life and fer what? It had a fig tree growing up threw the bed. How ironic.. Life and Death. Thats when I figured out,,, I could bring this truck back to life but you cant bring people back. I can fix a carburetor or rebuild a generator but I cant fix a brain or a broken heart. We live in this world and are conditioned to feel like we can comunicate with anybody, any time, any where in the world even if you dont know there exact physical location. But in this case...you just cant get there from here.
Then all of a sudden it came to me. This piece of shit truck was my ticket out! How profound, it all made sense. I could make this truck run and drive. Then DRIVE it off this washed out bridge down the road. That shows commitment and that I was sure about it. There was no way you could survive it. It didnt look weak and it would be kinda cool.
I went to the ranch and got some chain and a tractor and drug it back. I washed it, made a list of parts I needed and ordered the from the parts store in town. I billed them to the farm account cause fuck it I wasnt gonna be around to pay for em. As soon as I got it started I filled a five-gallon bucket with gas, shoved the fuel line in it and split. I had thought this threw over and over. And was execited I was gonna check out. I sped off down the road. Out in the field my grandmother heard the truck. She turned and waved good-bye.
A million things went threw my head. How cool would it be if you do see loved ones when you die?!? What does it feel like? Is this my life "flashing" before my eyes? Is Sam Barris gonna be there? What if theres nothing? What if they dont let me in? Will I show up in this piece of shit truck?!? Fuck! I should have just drove the fastback. ect. ect..
As I got close to the launch ramp I looked down at the gas I realized I had greatly over estimated the fuel required to make this trip. I thought well it seems to run ok, the least I could do is cruz it around a bit. It was a hot summer evening and I noticed the temp gauge was working. So was the oil pressure. All 6 pounds. I drove this piece of shit truck fer miles down country back roads as it was getting dark,(no lights)and as I saw half of the fuel was gone I thought I better head back. No brakes so I made a big turn across a wheat field.
I thought I should have fix the cigarette lighter. They sell complete dome lights for this truck. The glove box cardboard is like $15. I wonder how much all the brakes shit would cost? And that was it... almost cured. I was still angry at everything that happened but now I was thinking about fixing this piece of shit truck. And not thinking of myself. I drove it back to the farm and as I came up to the house, my grandma was standing in the yard with her hands on her hips. I clutched it to stop and she waddled over to it and said, "I cant believe it. Its alive. When I saw ya zip outta here in such a hurry, I thought Id never see ya again."
So the moral of the story is what it is. This world we live in can be FUCKED. Ya just got to make the best of it. There are plenty of other ways to waist yer life, but I choose this.
Amen... glad you decided to hang around.
Great work Brad, get busy living....
X2 Good to hear you've got your head in a good place.
I have had reasons to second guess myself more than once. None in camparison to what you are or have gone through. Tough for sure. Glad you and this piece of shit truck are going to stick it out. Make something more of yourselves. I have always looked up to kats like you, and if it wasn't forthat, I would not be second guessing the buisness end of things right now. More power to you. Hope things get a bit easier to deal with.
Man that is some deep shit!! I'm glad your here buddy. It wouldn't be the same without you.
Welcome back, its good to have ya around.
i stopped by masterson kustoms one day while i was working to see what was going on,brad invited me in showed me around the shop to check out some of the cars they were working on,they do killer work! real cool guy...
Thank GOD for Grandma's!!!
That was pretty heavy Brad and very personal, Takes someone pretty unique and comfortable with who he is to share this kinda stuff. You're a good dude brother, maybe time can make things better? Sure hope so. Glad you're around.
You might want to call that POS truck lifesaver. Weird how life works sometimes.
i think at one point or another, we've all felt like doing what your talking about brad. Its not until you've reached the bottom that you really start to grow. Always know that your forever a member of a brotherhood of like minded people that would give the shirts off their back to help a fellow brother out, complete stranger or not. Iv found myself speeding down dirt roads with the lights off before. When you stop and realize how selfish the thought of ending everything is, you really learn that life has so much to offer. These cars are not just a job, or a hobby, they're a way to get away from things in life.
Thanks for putting too much fuel in that can brother.
That was heavy Brad but im glad you were led to that truck.I remember talking to you soon after it happened and I was in shock. I know this time has been the most fucked and hardest time of your life but you have alot of people who care and want to see you keep building customs.You are a good dude and a very generous person,I remember when you loaned me that Cad medallion when I was in a pinch,not many people are like that any more.There is a reason the old timers really dig you and im not just talking about your talent to build either.
We have had some good times like cruising to City Hall,grabbing lunch or sightseeing in Compton and im glad you are around so we can have some more good times.You have way to many customs to build and streets to crush to cut your life short.Let's make some new memories by copying some old ones like we did before. You have my number man,call me if there is anything I could help with.
Sorry for what your going through and have gone through, I know that doesn't mean squat... But thanks for sticking around. Hope to stop in soon to get sweaters painted for my kid and I.....
Crazy shit. Cool truck. Glad your sticking around!
I know we do not know each other, but our lives are sorta similar. My ex recently passed in early December, but our relationship seems alot more negative and other things in life brought me down also, but it's great to see a good ending to a tragic story. Sounds like you had a good girl, hopefully you can cherish the times you had and all the negatives vibes get vented via work and your passions...
That was some deep shit indeed. I dig the way you told it all with ease.
Glad youre stickin in this shit hole w/ us.
i really like to have more info on this pic.
is this the green fleet b4 paint? cause if so i had no idea it was juiced.
Great picture whatever it is.
I also would love to know more about the chopped Rivi w/ extended fenders.
Funny how when we have plans,and life has another story to learn us... Keep the faith bro...
So, anything on this car?
The green Fleetlline and the car in the photo are two separate cars. The car with hydraulics is a four-door. If you look close, you can see the rear door handles in the photo. The Riviera with extended fenders is owned by Alan Mayes of Car Kulture Deluxe and Ol Skool Rodz magazines. They have shown many build articles chronicling its transformation from stock.
Thanx! this pc i work on is OLD, and every image is like double as dark as it really is, so i cant possibly see the rear handles
thought id add this portrait to the folk in question.....
keep up the lead slinging sir..
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