Hello I am DJ Ready D from Mzanzi Ridez, a self confessed Hip Hop and Motorcar junkie. I am grateful to be in your company, but I do hot wish to be cured.
Planet earth is on the brink of a recession with rising interest hikes, fuel, food and all the other basic necessities that keeps the human race functional. In Mzanzi, Eskom is knocking the masses lights out.
On the flipside we have a breed known as Motorheadz that refuse to be left in the dark. My passion and job led to encounters with builders and drivers the world over. Not so long ago we traveled to L.A and Las Vegas to cover the custom car scene. Our week in L.A. was a good run up for the main event nearly 500km away. Passion for cars was evident on every street, round every corner and most car dealerships. SUV’s on 24inch chrome rollers became a regular sight. Porsches ran the streets on Santa Monica and they where as common as City Golfs in South Africa. We dropped in at places like Platinum Motor sport to witness Bentleys, Benzos and Lambo’s get ripped to the gut and rebuilt for SEMA in Las Vegas
One of the Highlights was visiting the Petersons Automotive Museum to witness a rare low rider exhibition and to check a priceless ride from the Elvis collection. Homies Low riders were on form displaying their award winning Sundance Chevy Impala. Air brushed details reveal the owner’s thoughts and expression. Colourful and intimate stories get told as these vehicles get used as artistic canvasses. A story that caught my attention was one told on a 48 Chevy chopped and dropped into an ice – cream truck of that era. The Chevy truck was symbolic of the joy and excitement the ice cream truck brought before darkness fell on that community. A detailed depiction of police brutality, forced removals and racism towards Hispanic families in East LA put me on the emotional roller coaster. I could relate to this because my family suffered the same fate under the previous apartheid government. Some displays had bicycles twisted and shaped into unique accents to compliment the rides. Famous classics and famous artist got their platform and appreciation in one of the most important venues for motor enthusiast.
Our journey took us to Las Vegas a week later. We decided to drive because we wanted to experience the American road trip. Our sights we dominated by a huge variety of automobiles that consolidated the fact that we are in America. Hummers started looking insignificant in size because pick trucks as big as obese dinosaurs roaring and grunting down the highways made us feel like little dust particles. We managed to see some machines get carted to Vegas for SEMA. On our arrival – it felt like we drove straight onto a movie set because we were met by a brother rolling in a topless burnt orange Lambo with custom rims banging the latest Hip Hop tracks. The environment shouted – win or loose, gamble or ramble, go big or go home. Here we got the main course of America’s razzle and dazzle and its appetite for world possession. After checking into a monstrous hotel – strictly set up for gamblers with cheesy rooms that will tempt you to leave and spend money – we hit the streets in search of what we missioned for.
Day one was for set up and registration at the convention centre for SEMA. I was blown away and sidetracked from procedure because the cars being set up outside the halls had me in a zone. I got that butterflies, the hair-raising feeling and my press pass, meaning its time to invade motor heaven. Our challenge was to bring home enough coverage because one hall was the size of Sandton convention centre and there were five besides the outside arenas and Chip Fooses overhaulin studio.
A sea of House of Colour splashed cars and bikes sparkles and lined the tarred areas like jewels encrusted into the royal crown. We had a hard time choosing where to start because choosing content was never this easy, frustrating and mind boggling.
Coming to end of this article is the same as the latter because I am itching to get to the core of our experience. I will take you on that cruise in the next issue.