ONE OF THE MOST DRAMATIC, AND ICONIC, Barris Kustoms of all-time is "THE GOLDEN SAHARA" .
In our Annual Sunday Morning Session at the KKOA Lead Sled Spectacular in Salina, Kansas, in 2009, my friends GEORGE BARRIS, JOHN D'AGOSTINO, and myself, talked about some fabulous cars - both old & new- that George, his brother Sam, and their shop had created through the years.
ONE OF MY PERSONAL, ULTIMATE-FAVORITES IS "The Golden Sahara", so for the first time, I asked George to give me the full story on this legendary, bonafide "Dream Car", "Concept Car", that was built from a wrecked Lincoln Capri Hardtop. Well, as usual, George didn't disappoint me !
George not only filled John, and myself, in on how the accident with the Lincoln happened (see the accident pic below), he talked about the "fishy" side of "The Golden Sahara", and, how it had a starring role in the 1960 Jerry Lewis hit movie "Cinderfella"!
IT'S LOTS OF FUN when George, John, and I sit down to talk cars, and this is one Interview I know you'll want to hear more than once. JK
(Above: Here's the Lincoln after the crash...that's how "The Golden Sahara" started out ! As you can see, there's LOTS of work in the finished product ! )
(Above left: the "Cinderfella" Sound Track LP; Above right: Jerry Lewis getting into "The Golden Sahara" in "Cinderfella".)
DURING THE COURSE OF OUR INTERVIEW, John mentioned having a video of "The Golden Sahara" in action on TV, and I added the fact that when I attended the Pasadena Playhouse in California, GARY LEWIS - Jerry's son - was a classmate of mine and a good friend.
Shortly after we left the Playhouse, Gary, and his group The Playboys, began recording for Liberty Records and, in 1965, their very first record, "This Diamond Ring", was a #1 Smash Hit ! Then I started my career in radio, and ended up playing Gary's records !
(Above left: A gathering of Rock 'n Roll Legends in St. Louis, April 18, 1966 ! L-R: Billy Joe Royal ("Down In The Boondocks", Jim Brown (WIL Radio), Bob Kuban ("The Cheater"), Jonnie King & Gary Lewis. This photo is from my personal collection.)
[NOTE: All photos on this page courtesy of their original owners/copyright holders.]
YOU CAN SEE "THE GOLDEN SAHARA II" IN ACTION IN THIS SPECIAL PRESENTATION ON YOUTUBE !! Here's the Video that John was talking about: The show was "I've Got A Secret", it was June 25th, 1962...watch as Host Gary Moore has The GS's owner, Jim Street, puts the GSII through it's paces !
Just go to this link and enter "GOLDEN SAHARA II by George Barris": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n72FLMtSs4U
TO SEE "THE GEORGE BARRIS TRIBUTE PAGE" featuring Interviews with George, John D'Agostino, and, myself, talking about TWELVE of George & Sam's greatest kustoms just CLICK-ON-RIGHT-HERE !
(Above: That's George & myself, in 104 degree heat, at the 2006 KKOA Lead Sled in Salina, Kansas...yes, it WAS hot !!)