When We Were Mods – Part I

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Part I – My Scooter

This is a machine that changed my life…

This is the 1977 Vespa Rally 200 that I bought in April of 1982 for $300 when I was a senior in high school.

Before I bought this scooter I had never heard of mods, but by the time I graduated two months later I was already changing from a punk/rockabilly kid to a clean dressing, soul music loving mod.

Two mods at my high school – Mark Hackworth and Rodney Sheppard (Rodney later went on to be the guitarist for Sugar Ray) – took it upon themselves to instruct me in the proper way to be a mod – dress sharp, stay out all night, listen to the right music, and always go, go, go…


Above: (from left to right) Mark Hackworth with one of my friends at the time, Jeff.
Photo by David Shelton.

I turned 18 the same week I graduated from high school, and the next week I rode my scooter 35 miles (by freeway) from Irvine to Hollywood with a friend of mine named Jeff to go to the On Klub and see The Untouchables.

After The Untouchables played that night I joined a group of scooters headed to a party “just around the corner” and ended up getting a grand scooter tour of Hollywood and LA all they way down to the party in Santa Monica.

The party was still going at close to dawn when I got back on my scooter and rode 30 miles down the 405 freeway to my job in Irvine, just in time for work at 7:00 am.

And so it began, over 30,000 miles (before my speedometer died and I lost track) of scooter riding around Orange County and Los Angeles from the summer of 1982 through the spring of 1984.

Lots of crazy adventures, broken brake cables, blown-out tires, paint jobs, accessories, lights, mirrors, stickers – when my scooter finally died in 1984 I knew everything about that machine – inside and out.

It was because of my scooter I entered a whole sub-culture of sharp dressing, great dancing, scooter riding people that would be my life for the next two very important years of my life….

Next:

Part II – Orange County Mods 1982/83
Part III – Clubs, Bands and Music
Part IV – The Untouchables and the LA Mods
Part V – Fliers, Buttons and Other Memorabilia

Gallery of Images – My Scooter

Video | Where It’s At | Beck with Jessica Dobson

This is our bible-study friend Jessica Dobson who is touring with Beck as his guitarist on the Modern Guilt tour. She started in June, and has been playing all over the place since then.

Tonight our bible-study group (I was sick and stayed home but my wife went) got to go up to a bar/club in LA to see a secret Beck show. Unfortunately Beck was sick also and the show got canceled…

Jessica is the worship leader at our church – Grace Harbor here in Long Beach. We meet at the Bixby Park community center every Sunday at 10ish – come check it out if you like. Any way, Jessica brings a sweet, old style, almost Carter Family-like sometimes, feel to the worship and you know it’s from her heart and where she’s at.

And with that, here’s the video: Where It’s At by Beck Hansen with Jessica Dobson on guitar.

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This video was originally post on YouTube by 1goodthingaboutmusic (I did not shoot this footage), you can click the link to take you to see more Beck videos with Jessica.