A Brief un-Hollywood History
This car was originally created in 1998 for a Halloween party. As an amateur blues harmonica player, I was asked to jam with a blues band for the party. But rather than just go there, the guys in the shop and I took this Fury and made it into a Blues Mobile, something like in the movie “The Blues Brothers”. Well, the party was a blast. A year later, a local 4th of July parade heard about me and my car and wanted it in their event. The people loved this car. Some say it looks like a big toy. Whatever, it’s a hit. This year’s plans call for a steel crank 440 V-8 and a 9.25 posi unit so this “old Smokey” can light ’em up. The next stop is the August Worcester Nationals for four days of Smokey Blues. If people didn’t enjoy this car so much, I probably wouldn’t bother. But, hey, who doesn’t like the blues in shades of black and white? P.S. I promise to grow up someday. In the meantime, keep rockin’!
The “Blues Mobile” story continues. In June 2003 my niece talked me into bringing the Blues Mobile out for her high school graduation party. At first I said I couldn’t make it because of our workload. But after bringing my wife to the airport, my daughter and I ran home, loaded up the car and headed to Chicago. (Are we nuts? Ed. note: yes.) Two days on the road and we were in Chicago. My brother-in-law was in on the gag so we stayed in touch via cell phones. He kept telling my niece, “what a shame Uncle Jerry and Leah couldn’t make it!” The whole party was bummed out… then around the corner comes the Blues Mobile, flashers on, speakers in the car playing “Sweet Home Chicago” and me on the P.A. asking “is someone having a graduation party?” Needless to say the party went crazy, people yelling, women crying, and everyone at a complete loss for words. What a riot! Later that day I drove the people around and cruised some of the popular spots for fun. One of the people in the car, Steve Bastien, had so much fun we sold the car to him. After the party weekend, my daughter Leah and I headed back out to Rhode Island.
The next problem was how to deliver the Blues Mobile to Steve. We decided to take the car to the Mopar Nationals in Columbus Ohio and then to Detroit for the Woodward Dream Cruise, the third weekend in August. The trip went fine and we “stole the show” on Woodward Ave in Detroit. At that time, my Dad (also in Detroit) gave me his 1972 Chevrolet Townsman Station Wagon. So, my friend and Blues Brother Curtis Aric (AKA Jake) drove the wagon while I drove the Blues Mobile to Chicago for delivery to its new owner. So the first Blues Mobile is now in Chicago (Rio Blues Music City) and will be bringing laughs and smiles to many. Our trip back from Chicago with my dad’s wagon went fine and it’s now part of the company’s classic car fleet.
As soon as we got back from Chicago, a search for a “new” Blues Mobile was underway with certain requirements, one being AC as summer parades can be deadly! The car we found was a 1977 Chrysler Newport C-Body 4-door with only 40K… a new old car with AC! and a big block! Yeah! The original car in the movie was a 1974 Dodge Monaco, but they are almost impossible to find. Anyhow this is not going to be a “Resto-Perfect” car, but a parade and fun car following a Blues Brothers theme. As long as it’s a Mopar C-Body, that’s okay.
We quickly put the car together as we had a request to do the NYC Veterans Day Parade. A black and white paint job, signage, and a killer, ALPINE, kicker sound system (speakers on the outside), the car was ready as “Blues Mobile II” to entertain the vets and for future events. I see the future of the Blues Mobile II as a parade car, fundraiser, and general “laugh machine”, keeping alive the memories of the Blues Brothers movie and John Belushi, while putting smiles on peoples’ faces of all ages. Keep rocking, and buy some blues music.
– Jerry Carlson