- By George Barris and David Fetherston
- ISBN 978-0-7603-3222-1
- Publisher: Motorbooks
- Price: £17.99
‘The list of names is a who’s-who from Hollywood of the Sixties, Seventies and beyond – Elvis, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, John Travolta, Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, Ann-Margaret. When these megastars wanted their cars customised to fit their styles, tastes and personalities, they went to one man – George Barris, King of the Kustomisers. Now, for the fist time, hear the inside story of how these famous celebrities came to the Barris shops and see the results of George’s collaborations with them. ‘Barris Cars of the Stars’ is a trip down memory lane to the days when men wore paisley, women wore miniskirts, and all the cars were kool – Barris Kustom Kool.’
There is retro and there is retro… It’s safe to say that if you like every single one of these customised cars, well, you really do need to seek medical attention. Some are fascinating, some make you laugh, some might inspire and some will make you gag.
The format is pretty simple: the book works through George’s list of clients, revealing the cars which the stars specified with words and pix. Taking in the mad (Bob Hope’s caricature golf cart); the fad (Redd Foxx’s Wacky Racerish tow-truck); and the bad (sorry, but there are too many to mention).
It would have been nice to have seen some concepts drawings or some pix of the building process, just to give the book a bit more depth, but as it is this tome really does illustrate the old chestnut that ‘money can’t buy you taste’.
It is also highly dangerous because the longer you look at some of these howlers, the less they offend your tastes, and the more you start to like them… Particularly, George Foreman’s Continental Hardtop, Farrah Fawcett’s Corvette and Dick Martin’s Pontiac Grand Prix – all of which are rate as double dizzle on the pimp-o-meter.