Styx Custom Van Contest-1979

Rudy

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The entire A&M ad is at the linked site, but here's a sneak peek at the van:

upload_2019-2-28_10-39-4.png

It's.....interesting! :laugh: Sure brings back memories of the era of custom vans, though.
 

Michael Hagerty

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The entire A&M ad is at the linked site, but here's a sneak peek at the van:

View attachment 3066

It's.....interesting! :laugh: Sure brings back memories of the era of custom vans, though.
I wonder who ended up with it and how long it survived. A Google search only turns up the ad and the couple of blogs that have written about it. Nothing about a winner or the van itself.
 

Michael Hagerty

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Decided to look one more place and voila'! The van went to Eucalyptus Records, based in Fairfield, CA: https://www.americanradiohistory.com/hd2/IDX-Business/Music/Archive-Billboard-IDX/IDX/70s/1979/Billboard 1979-06-02-OCR-Page-0110.pdf#search="styx van contest"

Can't find any more about it, other than a mention in Record World that Columbia decided to do the same thing with ELO, and that Eucalyptus proved the Styx van to be a good promotional tool.

My guess is that Eucalyptus probably re-painted the van after Styx cooled off and then sold it sometime later.
 

scamp

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Decided to look one more place and voila'! The van went to Eucalyptus Records, based in Fairfield, CA: https://www.americanradiohistory.com/hd2/IDX-Business/Music/Archive-Billboard-IDX/IDX/70s/1979/Billboard 1979-06-02-OCR-Page-0110.pdf#search="styx van contest"

Can't find any more about it, other than a mention in Record World that Columbia decided to do the same thing with ELO, and that Eucalyptus proved the Styx van to be a good promotional tool.

My guess is that Eucalyptus probably re-painted the van after Styx cooled off and then sold it sometime later.
I can tell you where it was because it was in my hometown! Not too many miles from Fairfield (maybe 30 or 40) is a town called Danville, which back in those days was a place that was not much more than a small town that almost no one had ever been to. The "Styx Van" as we all called it, was there for as long as I can recall. In fact, no one seemed to know that it was from a contest and we thought that the guy who owned it was just some huge fan who had the work done to custom specs. Over time it got to be a bit of a local joke because Styx was no longer massively popular and was instead a singpost of a dying era. Music was changing so quickly in those days that by the early 80's there was Devo and The Police and Duran Duran and Madonna, etc. The days of Journey/Kansas/Styx/Boston dominance (sadly) had waned, and MTV had really opened up the landscape to all kinds of music. Anyway, the Styx Van was almost an instant anachronism because it showed up sometime around 1980/81, I think, which was right at the end of those 70's glory days. I loved seeing the thing every time I drove by where it was parked. In case anyone is interested or knows the area, it was right by the entrance to the old Alpha Beta/Kavanaugh's Liquors center, near the 680 off ramp by Diablo and Alamatos. The van was parked in front one of those small houses that have since mostly been remodeled and sell for over a million dollars, which in itself is ludicrous. I miss the old days! Anyway, ask anyone from Danville, CA from that era and they'll have almost certainly run across the Styx Van!
 

Michael Hagerty

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I can tell you where it was because it was in my hometown! Not too many miles from Fairfield (maybe 30 or 40) is a town called Danville, which back in those days was a place that was not much more than a small town that almost no one had ever been to. The "Styx Van" as we all called it, was there for as long as I can recall. In fact, no one seemed to know that it was from a contest and we thought that the guy who owned it was just some huge fan who had the work done to custom specs. Over time it got to be a bit of a local joke because Styx was no longer massively popular and was instead a singpost of a dying era. Music was changing so quickly in those days that by the early 80's there was Devo and The Police and Duran Duran and Madonna, etc. The days of Journey/Kansas/Styx/Boston dominance (sadly) had waned, and MTV had really opened up the landscape to all kinds of music. Anyway, the Styx Van was almost an instant anachronism because it showed up sometime around 1980/81, I think, which was right at the end of those 70's glory days. I loved seeing the thing every time I drove by where it was parked. In case anyone is interested or knows the area, it was right by the entrance to the old Alpha Beta/Kavanaugh's Liquors center, near the 680 off ramp by Diablo and Alamatos. The van was parked in front one of those small houses that have since mostly been remodeled and sell for over a million dollars, which in itself is ludicrous. I miss the old days! Anyway, ask anyone from Danville, CA from that era and they'll have almost certainly run across the Styx Van!
Scamp, Danville has one other claim to fame. It's where Dr. Don Rose lived for the first few years (1973-78 or so) when he was at KFRC, San Francisco. He'd mention it quite a bit.

Just for grins, I did a Google Maps street view of the house next door to the shopping center---after 40 years, it was too much to hope for that it would be in the driveway. But satellite view shows the place has a HUGE backyard and a large object that I can't get high-enough resolution on. Could be the van under a cover---or not.

Do you remember the last time you saw it?
 

Michael Hagerty

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Dr. Don Rose gained some fame in Philadelphia at WFIL as one the "boss jocks". I own a promotional album from Bread that is autographed to me by Dr. Don Rose.
I loved DDR. Met him at the book signing for Ben Fong-Torres’ book “And The Hits Just Keep On Comin’”. He, Ben and longtime KFRC Music Director Dave Sholin autographed my copy.

Don was a wonderful guy. Whoever said you should never meet your heroes never met him.
 
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