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  1. #1
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    Default Easyrider mag is Back..

    Details:

    https://classiceasyriders.com/?fbcli...m9-YWE16Kqqzs4

    Serious Question: Have they been gone too long and missed too much to reclaim their former glory?

    Media has changed. So has the culture, and the motorcycle culture subset within it. They've been gone a long, long time..

    OTOH.. Few others are doing biker mags well.. So, there's certainly a niche for someone to fill.

    ?

  2. #2

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    Good points

    I was a fairly faithful reader until about 2000. I also liked OL biker back in the day. But times changed along with the staff of most of the biker type mags. Basically I havent picked up any biker mags for about 15 years now. No appeal for me.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by docmel View Post
    Good points

    I was a fairly faithful reader until about 2000. I also liked OL biker back in the day. But times changed along with the staff of most of the biker type mags. Basically I havent picked up any biker mags for about 15 years now. No appeal for me.
    There are still motorcycle magazines?

    Jim

  4. #4

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    It was a product of its time. Those times are past and it's a different world than it was back then.

    "Biker culture" was a genuine thing back then. And it was one of the few publications that spoke to that small niche audience that loved bikes and lived their lives just a little bit different than mainstream proper society, in an era before the internet and social media.

    It wasn't just about the bikes either. They talked straight up about drugs (i.e. "The Straight Dope" articles), music, being hassled by the cops and the establishment, tattoos, how to make a set of weights to workout with from used flywheels... I'm babbling, but you get the point.

    And I think what made it so successful was that the crew of Paisano Publications were real. They were genuine. They were "one of us". I remember going into the bank once about 25 years ago, wearing an Easyrider t-shirt, and the teller at the counter asking me about it, do I ride, yada yada. Then she said "I used to work for them 'x' years ago when I was in California... those guys really WERE like that".

    And I saw the magazine change as the audience changed. As much as I lamented the HD landscape changing right as I was coming of age, it really was an accurate reflection of its time. They went from being about sex, drugs and rock and roll and wild ass home fabricated chops, to cookie cutter builds with as many high cost chrome plated billet manufactured parts as possible. I remember the one page article they did featuring the Baker (?) 5 speed gearset (pre-HD 5 speed tranny) and how they were very deliberate in stating that they didn't officially endorse any product, and the piece was simply to confirm this did in fact exist. And I remember later on when the "Parts Box" started appearing every month to basically advertise the latest overpriced gaudy Arlen Ness bolt on bullshit.

    Those days are gone, and what I see today is nothing but an attempt to prepackage and market an experience and a lifestyle that used to be organic and genuine. It's why I can't stand to go in to the oldest and most established Harley dealer in town. I remember when it was nothing more than a small dirty steel shack where the owner was helping customers at the parts counter, and knew the regular customers by name, and the shop was an impromptu hangout because odds are when you went in there, you were going to run into at least one or two people you knew and end up hanging out and bullshitting for an hour, and if you were there towards closing time you were probably going to be having a few beers with the crew. Now, with that owner having passed and his daughter having sold the business, they try like hell to pretend that is what they still are and have people buy into the "experience".

    Maybe I'm just a cynical fuck, but I feel that CheesyRider would probably unironically be an all to accurate reflection of our current time

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    I never really got into easyrider mag, I always thought it was too over produced & had a plastic, made up feel to it all,
    with most bikes featured being non runners just built for the issue then recycled for the next,
    bullshit 'Bro' talk all produced to part ya from ya hard earned,
    I preferd Street Choppers & biker lifestyle & the two British bike mags 'Back Street Heroes' & 'AWOL'.
    Last edited by tzienlee; 11-20-2021 at 9:46 AM.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by tzienlee View Post
    I never really got into easyrider mag, I always thought it was too over produced & had a plastic, made up feel to it all,
    with most bikes featured being non runners just built for the issue then recycled for the next,
    bullshit 'Bro' talk all produced to part ya from ya hard earned,
    I preferd Street Choppers & biker lifestyle & the two British bike mags 'Back Street Heroes' & 'AWOL'.
    It definitely morphed into that vibe by the early 90s. Which, like I said, made it an ironically accurate reflection of the times.

  7. #7

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    And now that I actually read that, and just because I'm not done talking shit about this yet... Ghost Rider was NOT "the most iconic David Mann painting of all time".

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    Quote Originally Posted by DazedandConfused View Post
    And now that I actually read that, and just because I'm not done talking shit about this yet... Ghost Rider was NOT "the most iconic David Mann painting of all time".
    I've got one thing to say, the first decade of Easyriders rocked. I've got most of them. But as the song said, 'those days are gone forever, I should just let 'em go, but...'. Life , the world , 'lifestyle' it's all changed, technology has made us slaves.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoghead View Post
    I've got one thing to say, the first decade of Easyriders rocked. I've got most of them.
    I totally agree, I have them all and many doubles..........

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoghead View Post
    ...it's all changed, technology has made us slaves.
    I think these are two separate statements. And, I agree with them both.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by DazedandConfused View Post
    It was a product of its time. Those times are past and it's a different world than it was back then.

    "Biker culture" was a genuine thing back then. And it was one of the few publications that spoke to that small niche audience that loved bikes and lived their lives just a little bit different than mainstream proper society, in an era before the internet and social media.

    It wasn't just about the bikes either. They talked straight up about drugs (i.e. "The Straight Dope" articles), music, being hassled by the cops and the establishment, tattoos, how to make a set of weights to workout with from used flywheels... I'm babbling, but you get the point.

    And I think what made it so successful was that the crew of Paisano Publications were real. They were genuine. They were "one of us". I remember going into the bank once about 25 years ago, wearing an Easyrider t-shirt, and the teller at the counter asking me about it, do I ride, yada yada. Then she said "I used to work for them 'x' years ago when I was in California... those guys really WERE like that".

    And I saw the magazine change as the audience changed. As much as I lamented the HD landscape changing right as I was coming of age, it really was an accurate reflection of its time. They went from being about sex, drugs and rock and roll and wild ass home fabricated chops, to cookie cutter builds with as many high cost chrome plated billet manufactured parts as possible. I remember the one page article they did featuring the Baker (?) 5 speed gearset (pre-HD 5 speed tranny) and how they were very deliberate in stating that they didn't officially endorse any product, and the piece was simply to confirm this did in fact exist. And I remember later on when the "Parts Box" started appearing every month to basically advertise the latest overpriced gaudy Arlen Ness bolt on bullshit.

    Those days are gone, and what I see today is nothing but an attempt to prepackage and market an experience and a lifestyle that used to be organic and genuine. It's why I can't stand to go in to the oldest and most established Harley dealer in town. I remember when it was nothing more than a small dirty steel shack where the owner was helping customers at the parts counter, and knew the regular customers by name, and the shop was an impromptu hangout because odds are when you went in there, you were going to run into at least one or two people you knew and end up hanging out and bullshitting for an hour, and if you were there towards closing time you were probably going to be having a few beers with the crew. Now, with that owner having passed and his daughter having sold the business, they try like hell to pretend that is what they still are and have people buy into the "experience".

    Maybe I'm just a cynical fuck, but I feel that CheesyRider would probably unironically be an all to accurate reflection of our current time
    Well said.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rockman96 View Post
    Well said.
    Ditto.

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    Sleazy-Rider

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    There is a digital collection of older Easyriders but it's got heavy DRM so it's locked to devices (thus lasting for most people for only the life of the device which is a shit thing to do) so I won't recommend it. Perhaps one day some foreigner or creative geek outside the US will properly scan their collection as the pre-extreme-bullshit (there was always a lot of bullshit but that catered to a larger audience) early era has so many classic chopper photos it really is historically valuable.

    DazedandConfused fucking nailed it.

    The old biker culture was unique because it was borne of a real requirement for mutual repair and maintenance support. Reliable motorcycles killed that culture except for chop builders and vintage collectors.

    The dealers and independent shops had their customers by the short hairs (I do NOT miss that shit) which is why so many of us learned to wrench (including my indy shop mentor who tired of getting ripped off in the 1950s....). That made Harleys (designed for easy field repair and never underestimate the influence of their engines designed for pre-CNC machine tools and their roller bearing crankshaft which is easily overhauled to "zero time") a great choice for bikers wrenching their own. That community helped make up for having to order parts only through shops which could make the minimum dealer order (many were lazy fucks who let parts orders sit longer than necessary) because if you didn't have a part one of your bros (or extremely rare sis!) probably did.

    There is nothing new to do to an old Harley other than modern machining, repair and finishing processes (often awesome) because everything that can be done with that particular Art Deco classic big twin engine family has been done. Art really does have rules (proportions etc that always work visually) and those have been exhausted which is why many modern show bikes look like ass BECAUSE they use HD engines instead of modern powerplants.

    The Japs have it (generally) right and treat choppers as a way to re-create classic two-wheeled folk art rather than thrashing then failing to make something new. They have new bikes for that and bosozuku however bizarre lets them trip out their way.

    The good side is with everything done it's a simpler task to preserve the knowledge and images. (Chop Cult should sell archived site downloads for a modest fee to cover bandwith and make a few bucks, so should Jockey Journal since web scrapers ain't that great and the content is paid for. Downloads can be simple since geeks will figure them out and those not motivated to learn don't really want them enough.

  15. #15

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    I was a reader way back when, only for the bikes as I'm into show bikes. Miraculous Mother and the rest of the rubbish was just that, rubbish. Although, I didn't mind the girls, no tattoos or pins stuck in them back then, girls tried to look attractive, now they just look like pigs! It's all on TV these days with the Teutels and their ridiculous buy and bolt customs and their feuds.

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    Some very thoughtful posts. As a Harley noobie, I missed all of that shit.

    I can see it, though.. I think Farmall and DaC have it right with the combination, alternative lifestyle/Real Bikers and maintenance/support/upgrade network providing the ER fanbase in a world before social media. That certainly describes the bikers I remember as a kid very well.

    It's kinda why I asked, because it is all so different now from what I remember. But, in fairness? I wasn't that close to it. So, maybe I'm wrong?

    But the difference I see is what Farmall hit on with reliable bikes making serious wrenching obsolete. And a difference among the aficionados - Where the "Bikers" of today aren't really alternative lifestyle types, living alternative lifestyles that happen to involve motorcycles.. So much as people who want to play act a little, and simply adopt a biker chic for a few hours, or a weekend at a time, as an escape.

    Of course, they would disagree with this vehemently.. But I doubt the real bikers I remember from my youth, would.

    Frankly? They shouldn't disagree with it at all. As it isn't an insult. The new batch are phonies, but they're probably better and more successful, and happier, people overall than many of the "real" bikers from back in the day, anyway. Just to be 100% honest about it.

    In spite of this, I think the (ahem) "real biker" influence is the only thing that makes the hobby interesting now. The wannabees aren't fascinating and despite the amazing amounts of money lavished on them today, their machines are indistinguishable from one another.

    Because of that, I'll probably give ER a look.. And we do subscribe to Greasy Culture and Dice. I guess, like in the old days, a couple of biker mags are filling the niche lifestyle of custom antique bikes and choppers? Maybe it is a formula that will work all over again?

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    If I could buy a magazine and go back to the early 80s I would, but I can't so....

    I loved the Dave Mann picks and the how to articles, also the skinny on upcoming events.

    Now most all of that is on the web. I do miss some of the photography though, always top notch and they always seemed to have someone at the right place at the right time. Now every Tom, Dick, and Harry with a phone thinks they are capturing solid gold.

    When the new ER would show up it would circulate through the house till every single person had a chance to dig it.

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    And wonder how long till a trans get posted on a bike. I remember back in the day my mom grabbing my pops an “easy rider” and a “in the wind” now guys with face tattoos drive Prius’s with a “coexist” sticker’ can’t say I was involved in the biker scene being I was a young little shit. But from what I seen then to what it is now, for instance being out and having a guy asked me what boots I’m wearing…I was at a bike night thing and seen another club guy pressing another guy for “why are you friends with him on Instagram don’t you know he’s a such and such”….def took a hard right for the worst.

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Supertouch View Post
    And wonder how long till a trans get posted on a bike. I remember back in the day my mom grabbing my pops an “easy rider” and a “in the wind” now guys with face tattoos drive Prius’s with a “coexist” sticker’ can’t say I was involved in the biker scene being I was a young little shit. But from what I seen then to what it is now, for instance being out and having a guy asked me what boots I’m wearing…I was at a bike night thing and seen another club guy pressing another guy for “why are you friends with him on Instagram don’t you know he’s a such and such”….def took a hard right for the worst.
    Well you can fuck right off with that first sentence, but whatever you do you. I don't give a shit who rides or builds, we're all just here for a good time right?

    Agree with you on the rest haha. Instagram for the chopper scene is unironically the funniest and worst thing to me. Anti-influencer chopper influencers is the dumbest thing in the world to me. Like don't whine about social media when you're running around with 50k followers getting free parts from all the biggest aftermarket companies. Pinnacle of the idiocracy is the Born Free contest. It's basically just a clout-driven internet popularity contest now.

    Hard to say if ER mag will try and reflect the current day and age or re-live the past. Few other mags (mainly thinking DICE mag) have really struck a decent balance of evolving while trying to maintain that old spirit without using it as a gimmick. Just my take on it.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by confab View Post
    Some very thoughtful posts. As a Harley noobie, I missed all of that shit.

    I can see it, though.. I think Farmall and DaC have it right with the combination, alternative lifestyle/Real Bikers and maintenance/support/upgrade network providing the ER fanbase in a world before social media. That certainly describes the bikers I remember as a kid very well.

    It's kinda why I asked, because it is all so different now from what I remember. But, in fairness? I wasn't that close to it. So, maybe I'm wrong?

    But the difference I see is what Farmall hit on with reliable bikes making serious wrenching obsolete. And a difference among the aficionados - Where the "Bikers" of today aren't really alternative lifestyle types, living alternative lifestyles that happen to involve motorcycles.. So much as people who want to play act a little, and simply adopt a biker chic for a few hours, or a weekend at a time, as an escape.

    Of course, they would disagree with this vehemently.. But I doubt the real bikers I remember from my youth, would.

    Frankly? They shouldn't disagree with it at all. As it isn't an insult. The new batch are phonies, but they're probably better and more successful, and happier, people overall than many of the "real" bikers from back in the day, anyway. Just to be 100% honest about it.

    In spite of this, I think the (ahem) "real biker" influence is the only thing that makes the hobby interesting now. The wannabees aren't fascinating and despite the amazing amounts of money lavished on them today, their machines are indistinguishable from one another.

    Because of that, I'll probably give ER a look.. And we do subscribe to Greasy Culture and Dice. I guess, like in the old days, a couple of biker mags are filling the niche lifestyle of custom antique bikes and choppers? Maybe it is a formula that will work all over again?

    Farmall is 100% correct that the reliability of the bikes went a long way to the shifting tide. And to dive into that, the sudden and unexpected surge of demand created a consumer market that drove the production and availability of parts. I also have long thought that a lot of the stigma surrounding the reliability of the older bikes was the fact that there was such a lack of parts and qualified mechanics. Jammer and Drag Specialties were about the only real game going for aftermarket parts, and a huge amount of customization had to be home fabricated. Likewise, if you were looking for performance upgrades, S&S was about it. And the HD dealers could be a real PITA about working on bikes that had been chopped or modified. There were no H-D Stage 1-4 kits and a plethora of performance upgrades available from the MoCo to be installed by the factory certified tech at the stealership. The guys doing all of this were either doing it themselves, or relying on their most-likely-not factory trained indy mechanic, with a limited availability of parts that left them having to figure this all out for themselves. Results would be anywhere from awesome to pathetic, depending on the parts used and skills of the individual.

    Yes, it's different, but I think that's because the crowd got so much larger, and the world got so much smaller at the same time. Harley sales numbers really tell the story. I was a kid riding on the back of Dad's bike in the "good ole days" and we could ride all day and never see another Harley, and a lot of days never even see another motorcycle. In those days, the rule was that if someone was on the side of the road, you stopped and offered to help them out. Today, the person on the side of the road has a device in their pocket that will serve any need they could have.

    I used to worry about who was pretending and who was "the real deal", and as I've gotten older and my life has taken a lot of complicated twists and turns, I've stopped trying to designate myself as the gatekeeper and arbiter of who is and isn't "genuine". I still stop for the increasingly rare bike that is on the shoulder of the road or in the abandoned parking lot, and the few times I've done so in somewhat recent memory, I've definitely gotten puzzled confused looks, and once a downright cynically annoyed reaction, because judging a book by its cover those guys had to think I would be about as fucking useless as a screen door on a submarine and might as well have been staring at the human brain as helping diagnose an issue on their scoot. I put myself through college and earned a degree in my 30's, and I have basically become everything I hated and used to bitch about when I was in my early 20's. I'm middle aged, professional, with a stable decent upper-middle class income. I wear khakis and a button down collared shirt to the office every day. Yet, inside of about 60 seconds I was able to help the grizzled old fucker with the broken down shovelhead find that his bike died because the wire going to his ignition coil separated from the ring connector, I was able to advise and show the young kid with his old Sportster that was pouring gas out of the bowl of his Bendix carburetor that the bowl separated by simply pulling the main jet and that the damn needle valve had vibrated itself into a position where it was wedged open, and I know that if you happen to break the tab on the contacts of a set of ignition points you can go to the nearest auto parts store and ask for a GM 6 cylinder points and condenser set (tell them it's for a Chevy Vega btw, assuming that they would even carry them anymore, because the Vega was only in production for a limited number of years and would help the parts guy narrow down exactly what you needed) and that if you can use the top of an aluminum can to set the gap on them close enough to get you home. Am I a phony? (rhetorical question...I've struggled with this a lot internally...serious cognitive dissonance going on). Or, am I actually pretending Monday through Friday when I put on my button down oxford shirt and dress shoes and come in to the office and have to pretend to give a flying fuck about diversity and equity and someone else's preferred pronouns?

    All I know is that I love bikes, especially Harleys, and especially custom builds, and I worked my ass off to put myself in a position in life where I can fund this lifelong obsession I've had without having to struggle or sacrifice too much financially. And I came to terms with this by ultimately realizing that there are two types of "bikers" - the ones who buy and ride their bikes for others, and the ones who buy and ride their bikes for themselves. I didn't ride the old AMF bikes for anyone else when that was all I could afford, I didn't build my evo for everyone else when I was still young and broke AF and couldn't really afford to build it, and I didn't buy my tc Road King for them either. So, with that I stopped giving a rat's ass where exactly I or anyone else falls on the real-to-fake spectrum.

    I go back to my statement that the Easyriders that everyone remembers from the good old days was a product of its time, and that time has passed. It's been replaced by ChopCult and Jockey Journal, and everything that Farmall said and that I touched on above. And I'm okay with all of that, as well as with the possibility that a relaunched CheesyRider will be an accurate reflection of the state of things today, because that's really all it was back then.

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