Since its inception, the LHoF has honored some of the most influential figures in lowrider history. In the 60's and early 70's, many of the Hall of Fame alumni were influential in their barrios and boulevards. That is, long before any magazine was published and mainstream popularity, these legends, that include the 2010 Lowrider Hall of Fame honorees, were cruising the streets simply for the passion to lowride.
In previous editorials, I've highlighted the progression of the lowrider movement from the early 70's into today's automotive sport and emphasized "who got us here"? However, as the 70's were coming to a close, this cultural entity had opened into new outlets through publications and film; simply put- this country was introduced to the world of lowriding as a culture shock. And so, it was no longer of "where we had been", now it was of "where are we going"? Influences like Dukes, Imperials, Groupe, and Lifestyle had set the standard in L.A., in Northern Cal it was Low Conspiracy, Low Creations, and New Style, in central Cal it was Carnales Unidos, in Arizona with Spirit and Society, and into Texas with Taste of Latin. These clubs were the catalyst that set the bar for car clubs that is even followed to date. In fact, each club I mentioned is still presently active, many decades later. Although, lowriding was spreading throughout the southwest, it was not until 1977 that yesterday's onda would begin to reach all the barrios of Aztlan, including a small town in Texas.
With that said; I'm sure everyone remembers their first time? I'll never forget mine; it was the spring of 1980. I remember at first just staring at it, wondering what do I do first? I finally got the nerve to open it up, and then it happened, Yep! I began to read my first Lowrider magazine. (thanks "El Forties" Ramos) In that issue, and many after that, I saw las rucas in the firme rides, it introduced me to music like Tierra, Malo, and Johnny Chingas. It instilled in me terms like unity, paz, brotherhood, and pride in our culture. It educated me with the political issues of the day, as well as, the racial struggles of the past. But, the true basis of this magazine, was and is, the displaying of some of the most beautiful custom lows the world has ever seen. Names like Gypsy Rose, Dressed to Kill, and my personal favorite, Krazy Camino were synonymous in the streets and in the pages of LRM. And reading of those custom vehicles, I learned of the customizers behind their art on wheels and the car clubs that they represented. As a teenager, in those pages, I not only found my identity, but a revelation: you see; to me, those customizers were artists; to me, those clubs represented brotherhoods; to me, the leaders of those clubs were organizers in their barrios and communities; to me, they became mentors and living legends.
Since 2005, the LHoF Executive Committee has been privileged in inducting these mentors and legends into their rightful place in lowrider history. Today, the LHoF continues its commitment to acknowledge those that have played a significant role in lowriding's past and as key figures in its future. And, with the support of Lowrider Magazine, will continue to educate today's autosport enthusiast of its unforgettable lowrider roots, to include this year's honorees.
The Lowrider Hall of Fame proudly and respectfully introduces its 2010 alumni: Memorial Honor- Richard "Big Rich" Gonzales, Craftsmanship Honor- Andy Douglas, Leadership Honor- George Luna, and Lifetime Contributor Honor- Ralph Fuentes.