I don’t know why, but Rock & Roll and fast cars seem to go hand-in-hand. I guess it’s the “stickin’ it to the man” aspect of both that draws the two worlds together.
Rock and roll is how you used to stick it to the man… Although you can also stick it to the man in a fast car by driving like a jackass with little regard for public safety while engaging police in a high-speed pursuit on a busy highway…
Though I certainly wouldn’t recommend doing that, unless you like the interior decorating of the local jail cells. Don’t try that in your own car – we don’t see the end, but we get the impression these guys probably got caught, and they’re driving a Ford GT. Trying this in your average sedan or minivan would be moronic at best and suicidal at worst.
So when you look at it that way, it’s not a huge surprise that when many rock stars hit the big time, some of their mountains of cash goes toward buying themselves something fast – be it a supercar, a classic hot rod or a super-luxury sedan.
Think of some notable rock star speed fiends. The first one that jumps to mind for me is Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, whose ’33 Ford Coupe was featured on the cover of their album Eliminator:
Unless it’s the Eliminator, there’s no reason for a grown man to take a picture of someone else’s car. pic.twitter.com/VtYItj6jQw
— Iron Seitz (@Jroq143) March 16, 2017
Ted Nugent is another rocker known for his affinity for cars… And shooting guns, which might explain the idea behind his zebra-striped Ford Bronco:
— Raceline Wheels (@RacelineWheels) July 21, 2016
Eddie Van Halen is another dude with a pretty ridiculous car collection. Perhaps most notable in the collection is the 1972 Lamborghini Miura S that was used for the revving sounds in Panama:
Eddie Van Halen doesn’t listen to the radio in his car. “I prefer the sound of the motor.” Well no wonder: pic.twitter.com/4MVXgQa1iY
— Alex Núñez (@Noonz) June 20, 2015
The audio comes in around 2:18.
Many people know Rick Allen as Def Leppard’s one-armed drummer, but do you know the story of how he lost his arm? It was a violent crash in his C4 Corvette that did it. Of course, Allen recovered and continued to drum for Def Leppard, becoming one of the more inspirational recovery stories in rock & roll.
— RealCarFacts (@RealCarFacts) August 1, 2014
I mean really, the list of rock star cars goes on and on and on.
One rocker who has quietly amassed one of the most celebrated car collections around is Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason. Here’s a look at his collection:
Pay attention to the car on Mason’s left in the photo at 0:13. That’s one of 28 McLaren F1 GTRs ever built, making it one of the most rare and sought-after supercars the world has ever known. It’s expanded on a little bit in that video, and you can actually read about that very car’s history on the F1 GTR Wikipedia page, under chassis #10R.
In this next video, Mason talks about how he got into collecting cars and what they mean to him – and in the background of much of the video is that very McLaren F1.
In the video, Mason explains how for him, cars took the place that drugs and alcohol take for many rockers (good choice, as long as you’ve got lots of money), and toward the end, talks about how he likes to drive these incredible cars, but has no desire to emulate what the big boys are out there doing. By big boys, he surely means professional racing drivers.
Anyway, last weekend at the Goodwood Circuit‘s 75th Members Meeting, mason got out on the circuit in his F1 GTR for a parade lap. He said before going out that he doesn’t drive the car very often, but that it’s a fantastic road car. He also talked about stretching the car’s legs while out on the circuit.
During the parade lap, Mason spun out and slammed into a wall.
As you can see, Mason, who recently turned 73, was fine, and walked away from the crash. From the looks of the video, he was going slow enough that likely the thing he hurt the most was his own pride. As for the car, it will need repairs – and though the damage doesn’t necessarily look all that extensive, keep in mind the value of the car. Back in 2015, a McLaren F1 LM (basically a street-legal version of the F1 GTR) sold at auction for $13.75M. So when the whole car is worth that much, you can imagine that any minor repair is going to cost a pretty penny.
Fortunately, Mason was a member of one of the biggest and best-selling rock bands of all time, so I would imagine he’s probably got the money to cover it.