The 1st Annual Pistons & Pin-Ups Car Show N’ Concert, The Valley Relics Museum, August 20, 2016
Deep in the heart of the SFV is where you will find the Valley Relics Museum, featuring a treasure trove of signs, souvenirs and memorabilia from the area’s vibrant past. Definitely one of the most unique showrooms – especially for those who have spent their lives here in this macrocosm of Southern California. The Valley Relics Museum would also be host to the 1st Annual Pistons & Pin-Ups Car Show N’ Concert.
A benefit event of cool cars, pretty girls, and amazing music, with proceeds going to Rock Against MS Foundation, The 1st Annual Pistons & Pin-Ups Car Show N’ Concert featured a headlining performance by Gilby Clarke (formerly of Guns N’ Roses), as well as a captivating appearance by Maureen & The Mercury 5. Taking place in the museum’s spacious backyard, the weather, company and music was absolutely perfect! Hosted by the Reverend Martini who made everyone feel at home and well informed, the 1st Annual Pistons & Pin-Ups Car Show N’ Concert would be an event to remember!
Maureen & The Mercury 5 opened the show, playing a scorching set of rockabilly and swing tunes as the blazing sun was high in the sky. I was beginning to worry that Ms. Maureen Davis or one the Mercury 5 would wind up with sunburn, but the heat certainly did not stop this massively entertaining band from delivering an absolutely wonderful set! Playing selections from their debut album The Keepin’ Kind as well as a few other surprises, this SoCal based collective clearly enchanted the early arrivals.
Not only is Ms. Davis sweet and sultry, but she possesses a world class voice that bring the material to an ultra-vivid life. With roots in Broadway, Ms. Davis exudes a tremendous sense of wit and intrigue within her live performance. The Mercury 5 are great fun to watch, enveloping the audience with a timeless wall of bodacious sound. Be sure to catch Maureen Davis rocking it out every Tuesday for Ultimate Jam Night at the world famous Whisky A Go Go!
The Satin Dollz were up next – an all-girl singing and dancing extravaganza bringing back the glory days of the past in an vast and epic way. Every member of this troupe is extremely talented, channeling such greats as The Andrew Sisters, Ella Fitzgerald and Benny Goodman. What a refreshing blast it was to watch the two exhilarating sets The Satin Dollz performed.
Then it was time for the punk and rockabilly sensations of Phantom Pomps. A rousing power trio from Goleta featuring Ms. Pussy Fontaine on drums and vocals, Cap’n Dick Fontaine on guitar and Fuse HardSix on upright bass, Phantom Pomps had everyone in the crowd rocking and rolling to their wickedly wonderful tapestries.
Rockabella Hoop Artist Lillian Starr would also make an quite an entrance, dazzling the crowd with her skillful hula-hoop action. All this and there was a car show contest and beauty pageant that made the event so exciting and memorable.
At this point, The Pistons & Pin-Ups Car Show N’ Concert organizer and founder Nancy B. Sayle took to the stage, discussing her own living with multiple sclerosis and introducing to the crowd Rock Against MS Foundation and their various activities. Ms. Sayle then announced the winners of the car show followed by the Reverend bestowing the crowns upon the three beauty pageant finalists.
It was now time for the headlining act to appear, and Gilby Clarke did not disappoint those who waited the entire day to see him. Clarke and his band opened with the rollicking refrains of Wasn’t Yesterday Great from his 2007 Self-Titled album – and presented songs from various stages of his brilliant career.
For longtime fans, it was exciting to hear Motorcycle Cowboys from his Kill For Thrills days in a live setting. Another highlight was when Clarke unveiled his own breathtaking rendition of the Bob Dylan via Gn’R cover of Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door. The Gilby favorites kept on arriving, including Under The Gun, Pawnshop Guitars, Dead Flowers, Tijuana Jail and beyond. The trio rocked the fans and definitely left everyone wanting to hear a whole lot more!
Rumor has it that a new Gilby Clarke album may be on the horizon – in the meantime, be sure to check out what Clarke and his band has to offer the world at large in a live setting. A dynamic conclusion to an absolutely amazing day!
Congrats to Nancy B Sayle and her staff on a spectacular, very well organized event. Here’s hoping we are treated to a second edition of The Pistons & Pin-Ups Car Show N’ Concert next year! And please take the time to check out the Rock Against MS Foundation and make a donation to this wonderful cause!
(Review and Photos by Ken Morton)