THE BEGINNING OF A CAREER sometimes takes a circuitous route. For Hall Of Famer, Founding Editor of Rod & Custom Magazine, SPENCE MURRAY, it started after he got out of the Navy in WW II, began working for customizer Link Paola, and had Link customize his then-new 1949 Chevy 2 door sedan.
Spence is an old friend. We were introduced many years ago by our mutual friend, Kurt McCormick. I had followed Spence's work since I was a kid...buying those "little pages" and absorbing all of the pix, stories, and, info in every copy. In fact, I still have EVERY COPY of those early R & C's that I bought, and they're all tucked away year-by-year in my Archives ! So, putting this Interview with Spence together, and recording & documenting his history, was truly a long-awaited, personal pleasure for yours truly.
From working at Link's Custom Shop, to building a show winning custom, to his media career which began in January,1953, and spun-off of his association with two other Industry Legends - Dean Batchelor & Ralph Poole - at Hop Up Magazine, Spence brings to life a story that you may have heard about, or, read about in the past. BUT, right now, you can hear Spence - in his own voice - tell his personal history for the first time on the Hall Of Fame Legends Series WebSite. JK
1953-2014: HAPPY 61st ANNIVERSARY, SPENCE !
(Top: Link Paola's Shop Sign; Above left: Early Hop Up Magazine; Above right: Spence Murray's award-winning '49 Chevy custom built by Link Paola )
(Above left: Spence Murray & Jonnie King on Darryl Starbird's boat; Above right: The first Issue of Rod & Custom, May, 1953 )
SPECIAL NOTE: THROUGH THE YEARS, Spence's career led him to become an all-encompassing Professional: Editor, Writer, Photographer, Historian. To his credit he's written many books through the years, including one on his love for the story of "Mutiny On The Bounty" about Pitcairn Island & its residents entitled: "Pitcairn Island: The First 200 Years".
He continues to contribute to the R & C Industry with Features in R & C, the newest version of Hop Up, and, truly great stories in The Rodder's Journal, among others.
[Some of the pix on this page courtesy of Rik Hoving's really cool Site: http://members.fotki.com/Rikster/ ]