If there's anything the 1960's taught us, it's that liberals can be just as aggressively violent as conservatives and that the existential struggle of man is in the chords of an electric guitar. Whether it was Jimi Hendrix singing "Voodoo Child," Bob Dylan with "Mr. Tambourine Man," or Johnny Cash with "Cocaine Blues," they all came with their own message and delivered it like the melodic prophets that they were. If you don't appreciate the power and soul of it all, well then, that makes you a part of the system these troubadours rebelled against. While people sit and talk nicely about politics and whom they should vote for, some of the greats came out screaming with an electric guitar and told us the whole damn system was broken and were ready to fight it. That was the high-water mark of the '60's. Now, the waves seem to have dissipated, and humanity is now sailing through the doldrums of a soulless and materialistic period of selfish, entitled greed. This is the one question few of the freedom fighters ask themselves—if they win their rebellion, what do the people do with all that freedom from the oppressive system? Well, they got department stores, fast food, and plenty of gas to drive around to their hearts' content until we need more oil. Then, well... you know what happens then.
But I digress. Let the music stand aside from politics and just be an anthem for the human race, ever searching for that green light of satisfaction and freedom that seems to elude us all—fast cars, fast women, good drink, good drug, and a whole lot of soul from the guitar. A question to ask yourself—if you had all that you feel you should, what then? If you had every political and existential need a human could hope for, what then, my friends, do you do? The answer to that question is your passion and your art. Anyways, here are some of the greats with some of their great cars. Every one of them changed the world in their own way, and each one has great taste in automobiles.
15 Ozzy Osbourne's Audi R8
"Sharon! Sharon! Get in the bloody car! This woman's trying to get my autograph."
Who would've ever guessed that The "Wizard of Ozz" would have a somewhat humble selection in his vehicles? That's not to say this thing can't be going off the rails with its 525 HP and 5.2-liter V10 engine. The Godfather of Heavy Metal and, of course, Sharon could be seen around Malibu, California in this unpretentious yet elegant German-made automobile. Maybe the quiet, simple life is what the Prince of Darkness wants now. Maybe it's what he wanted the whole time, but only now, in older age, has he laid his demons to rest for good. Godspeed, Ozzy. May you find solace in your golden years, and find happiness in the simple things in life, like shopping with Mrs. Osbourne.
14 Driving Moves Like Jagger
1966 was an incredibly tumultuous point in America's history. While Vietcong exchanged fire with U.S. soldiers outside Saigon, Mississippi Highway patrolmen disrupted black protesters with tear gas, and the space race was being won by the Soviet Union. Napalm was the smell of death in Indo China, Jim Crow was that same smell in the south. America was burning, and in the chaos and destruction rose many uncanny men and infamous ones that history would never forget. In the midst of all this, there was this new band they called "The Rolling Stones."
They were in your face and didn't care how you felt about what they were saying or who they were saying it about. Songs like "Brown Sugar" highlighted the sensuous allure of black women, "Gimme Shelter" explained that war was nothing but rape and murder started with a gunshot. It seems Mick Jagger had an affinity for the newly started James Bond franchise in England. Who can blame him? James wasn't just suave and courageous; he put a stop to the bad guys, and in 1966, we all needed that very very badly.
13 Keith Richards "Angie"
Keith Richards is known as one of the greatest guitarists of all time. He and Jagger founded The Rolling Stones and have made music for over 5 decades since then. Most recently, he's been known for his appearance in Pirates of the Caribbean as Captain Teague. Of course, he'd want to play a pirate, as the man used to drink Jack Daniels like it was tonic water. He's famously quoted as saying, "I've never had a problem with drugs. I've had problems with police." Richards '66 Bentley S3 Continental may be a juxtaposition of his rough-around-the-edges personality but shows the old guitarist has particularly refined tastes, nonetheless.
12 Eric Clapton's Special-Made Ferrari
If you're Eric "Slow Hand" Clapton, you can pretty much do whatever you want. This includes having Ferrari make you your own custom model to your liking. The SP12 EC (Special Project-Eric Clapton) is based on the 458 Italia but has influences from the 1970s B12 BB, which is reportedly Clapton's favorite. This had a 4.5-liter V8, which is stock for the Italia, much different than the flat 12 on the B12. One can imagine Eric driving down the road listening to himself sing "Wonderful Tonight" as he admires this one-of-a-kind automobile. Layla may have had him on his knees, but with this car, Eric isn't shedding any more tears over her. Long live the man who harnessed the blues and reggae in his musical legacy.
11 Seger's Page Turner
Bob Seger drives a 1970 Ford Mustang Mach 1. He still likes that old-time rock and roll, apparently. For you young kiddies, this was the man who originally did "Turn the Page," not Metallica! Ironically enough, he also sang "Like a Rock" in '86—that was used in Chevy truck commercials for years. No Chevy for this man. This 5.8-liter 351-cubic-inch Windsor V8 boasts 250 HP. Somewhere out there, a rock and roll master is working on his night moves in a sleek green-and-black striped Mustang, with an engine like a rock and a driver made the same.
10 Janis Joplin's White Rabbit Turned Psychedelic
This 1965 Porsche 356c Cabriolet has always been one of a kind, just like its owner, Janis Joplin. Reportedly, she paid Dave Roberts (one of her roadies) to customize it as seen. The car has an interesting history; it was stolen and painted gray to hide the distinctive appearance, then recovered and fell into disrepair. This car now sits on loan to The Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame from the Joplin family. If you want to know the inspiration for all the artwork, all I can say is go ask Alice...
9 Robert Plant's Stairway To Heaven
Another British rock and roll legend on the list who seems to have an affinity for 007 is Robert Plant. This '65 Aston Martin DB5 was definitely in style at the time and gained the affection of a handful from the British invasion. For the man who sang of the woman buying the stairway to heaven, it seems he bought his own. This was of course before his journey to the east where he discovered self-actualization. Songs like "Kashmir" came later on where the tenets of Indian philosophy overtook Led Zeppelin's music. Rumor has it that Led Zeppelin got its namesake when Paul McCartney said, "That band is going to go down faster than a led zeppelin." I guess he ate those words.
8 Johnny Cash and His Black (Of Course) Mercedes
Who knew the man in black had bought a Mercedes 560 SEL back in the early '90s? Well, he did, and just 4 years ago, it was finally sold at auction. As well known as Cash was for his 1970s black Cadillac Fleetwood, apparently, he developed a soft spot for German motors in his later years—not a bad choice on going foreign, really. With the diesel boasting 8 cylinders and nearly 240 horsepower, it's a little bit more powerful than the Cadillacs of its time, and you won't have to add motor oil once a month either. Rest in peace, Johnny, and I hope whoever bought this thing at least wears black most of the time.
7 Bob Marley's "One Love"
If you don't know who Bob Marley is or don't know any of his music, it's a safe assumption you support hard-right politicians and probably still believe we shouldn't have left Vietnam. From a little island country no bigger than 4,000 square miles, a man gave the world a strong political message that continues to reverberate from smoke-filled college dormitories. This was his 1976 Series 3 Landrover. An acknowledgment that British colonialism left behind some cultural elements still held dear to many, this British-made S.U.V. packs a very humbling 70 HP and does it with only 4 cylinders—a humble vehicle for a humble man. Mr. Marley is gone, but no woman no cry—his message still lives on...
6 Bruce Springsteen's Little Black Corvette
The boss drives a Corvette, a 1960 Corvette at that. Well, he did before it went to this museum. For the man who sang of being born in a country where you're forced to kill the yellow man, he drove with 4.6 liters and 275 HP. For those of you who don't know, this man received the presidential medal of freedom from Barack Obama in 2016. Anyone who knows some of his lyrics by heart will understand why that is. He sang of an America that contradicted its very ideals in its foreign actions and used the poor working class to do it. Live on, Boss, but at the time of this writing, I'm sure you've already moved to Mexico and given up on this thing they call hope.
5 The Voodoo Child's Highway Child
In 1969, at Woodstock, New York, Jimi Hendrix's Stratocaster could be heard by multitudes wailing out his version of "The Star-Spangled Banner." If you don't much about Jimmy, he was probably the most talented guitar player to have ever lived. Rolling Stone Magazine said just that years ago with a top 100 countdown. He was one of a kind and only stayed on this Earth a short while to give us his gift. An iconic member of the infamous "27 club," he passed at that young age of an apparent drug overdose. It comes as no shocker that the man who revolutionized music and continues to, until this day, drove a 1968 Corvette. With 350 horses under the hood of the monster V8, Jimi had no problem being a highway child.
4 Jim Morrison's Eleanor
The Lizard King drove a 1967 Shelby Mustang GT500. Yea, THAT car we always talk about. 662 HP 5.8 L V8. This car is the definition of sexy. This iconic car was more recently made popular once again in the remake of Gone In Sixty Seconds with Nicolas Cage and Angelina Jolie. In the movie, you see just exactly what 662 HP can do. The Doors lead singer, also a member of "The 27 Club," took the blues, rock and roll, and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche and created a one-of-a-kind musical legacy. It seems no one knows exactly what happened to the car after it was wrecked in 1969. Many reports say Jim was hell on wheels with this thing, mowing down trees at a police station and even once fleeing the scene of an accident and calling-in the car as stolen.
3 Brian Johnson's Back in Black Phantom
Anyone who's an AC/DC fan knows the story behind Brian Johnson becoming the lead man of the band. When Bon Scott died of alcohol intoxication in 1980, Brian Johnson took over as lead singer with a voice so eerily similar to Johnson's that some people out of the loop didn't even notice the change. Brian Johnson came into a sad situation, and many fans were averse to even trying to accept the new lead vocalist. The man made a long-lasting impression and, for the most part, continued the legacy of AC/DC. He has a 2010 Rolls-Royce Phantom. All black. Why did he buy it? He claims that growing up as a kid, it was considered the most unattainable vehicle, so when he gained the ability, he did just that.
2 David Bowie's 1981 Volvo
Who would've thought that the legendary David Bowie owned Volvo's first luxury automobile, the Volvo 262C? A pretty humble car for a very elaborate and eccentric rock god. The man's career spanned almost 6 decades, which could be why Rolling Stone gave him the designation of "The Greatest Rock Star Ever." On January 10, 2016, the world lost one of the greatest musicians to have ever lived. He died within weeks of making his last album, "Black Star," which, according to his manager, was meant to be a farewell to his fans. His Volvo offered neither much power nor exceptional luxury, but for the sheer admiration from Bowie, this car gets a thumbs up from my end.
1 Carlos Santana's Bad Karma
In 2012, Carlos Santana wrecked his new Fisker Karma. What's a Fisker Karma, you ask? It's a Finish hybrid luxury car produced by Fisker Automotive. Only around 1,600 were sold in the U.S., and a reported battery-fire issue created enough problems that the company went bankrupt in 2013. This car had an impressive 403 HP delivered through a motor manufactured by General Motors, a motor that utilized charged batteries and gasoline. They ran a little over a hundred thousand dollars. The car emits a sound at under 25 MPH to warn pedestrians of its approach. 52 MPG is impressive as well—just don't take your eyes off the road.
Sources: Npr.org Libertaddigital.com Videomuzic.com Youtube.com