We all remember that fateful day when the sight of a Lowrider changed our world forever. I remember mine. I was coming home from school late one afternoon after attending my 6th grade class at Saint Thomas Aquinas. Like I did every day, I was wearing my uniformed salt and pepper pants, and I was carrying a book bag full of homework, which was almost as big as I was. Just then it happened; I gazed over at a driveway a few blocks from my parents’ house, and became instantly possessed by what I saw. What my eyes focused on that sunny day in Monterey Park, CA, was a 1964 Candy Apple Lime Green Impala, which seemed to be sleeping on the floor! My world and my little brother’s world haven’t been the same since. I think we really related to the color of the lime green car because it was 1968, and all our friends in the ‘hood had Schwinn Sting Rays, which carried the same candy colors. Even though I didn’t realize it at the time, my brother and I weren’t the only neighborhood kids affected by Chuck Palaez’ car, and as the movement began all around us, it was clear that Lowriding would become my lifestyle. Maybe that day was my calling, because I hated to do homework from there on out. My life instead revolved around model cars and Testors glue, which we squeezed into the wheel wells of all our models to turn them into Lowriders. I’m sure that every last one of you can relate to that very first custom Lowrider that stood out in your early days, putting dreams of owning one into your heads. We are all connected by that priceless feeling of having our dream machine parked in the drive way, as we watch the whole neighborhood trip out on its paintjob, almost as if they were seeing a UFO that just landed. Yes, Junior’s lime ’64 Cover Car brings back some of those early memories for me! Hopefully, when you checkout this lime green machine, you will get mesmerized by the sport and culture of Lowriding the same way we did.

Before I get too carried away here on colors and cars, I would like to say that this new Lowrider Magazine comes to you with upgrades of paper quality and more editorial page content. While Lowrider has been in the price range of 5 dollars for a long time, we realized that if we wanted to bring you the quality that you deserved in our magazine, we would have to make a change. Many other magazines around us have gone up in price over the past few years, and they’ve done so without adding anything new for the consumer, and some have even gone down in quality! We couldn’t let our legacy and tradition go this route, so we wanted to figure out how to add more bang for your buck, instead of just upping the price for profit purposes, like everyone else has. Even though our cover price has increased, it is only because we have to cover the costs of bringing you the added value of more car features, new departments, thicker and heavier paper, and a step in the right direction towards a better future magazine. We’re striving to make even more changes, doing our best to bring you more culture and, when possible, extra pages so that we can extend our show coverage and traditional car features. Look around the newsstands, and you will see that all the magazines have gone up in price, and while Lowrider has also gone up, you can see that we’ve only gone up in value. The bottom line here is simple; I know the magazine has a ways to go, but the direction and new look are a positive first step. I respectfully ask that you please continue to support the magazine that illustrates and demonstrates our cause; The Lowrider Movement!

Lowrider “Image” pays respect to one of the Lowrider Magazine pioneers, a true promoter of our shows and the Lowrider image itself, Mr. Johnny Lazoya. Travel down the long path of his journey, as he promotes our national pastime. When you think of the word “Bowtie,” you don’t think of old school neckwear in our world, you think of John Kennedy. “Original” is definitely a great definition for this talented Lowrider architect, since he has been in the game of Lowrider restorations for a long time, and his influence on building Lowriders can be seen as far away as Japan!

There is “NewLife” in this month’s Car Club section. We can never forget the 4 or 5 Powerhouse clubs that started back in the late 60’s and early 70’s, as they built our sport into what it is today! Without their rebellious ways and defiant stance, it’s safe to say that we wouldn’t be here today. A world without them would be a world without custom paint, interiors, restorations, cruising, picnics, car shows, anniversaries, car clubs, and it would certainly be a world without Lowrider Magazine. That’s not a world I would want to live in, so hail to Newlife, and to those other clubs who are sometimes not mentioned! Without them, we would all be lost, Thanks be to God!

I know that we sort of push the traditional Lowrider Music a lot around here, and for the new generations, hold tight, we are working our way up to the new sounds. For now however, feast your eyes and ears on a very talented band called “Malo,” as they were true pioneers of the Latin rock sound. They had a bad ass style, bad ass chops, and the song “Nena,” was just a bad ass song. New Schoolers and Old Schoolers alike can appreciate the feelings and emotions that their vocal harmonies and melodies can bring to sunny afternoon cruises.

The SEMA show makes another appearance through this completely new and special issue as well. Lowrider was represented very well at this show, and it was evident that there are a lot of manufacturers who have a watchful eye on our industry. After all, what other automotive genre is into paint, performance, restoration, and suspension? If you have never visited this show, you should plan to, as there is no other show quite like it. It’s better than Disneyland.

Ask not what your magazine can do for you, ask what you can do for your magazine! Please help to keep Retro, Roll Models, Lowrider Business, and Lowrider Deluxe alive, by submitting photos and/or respectful comments to help improve these sections of our publication. Also, if you feel that someone near you has earned the respect of being in our “Image” or “Originals” segments, please let us know about it. Were in this together!

Joe Ray