It's one of those weekends that you'll think back six months from now and be glad you drank it in. Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend 16 is now nothing but great memories of badass rides, music, burlesque shows, vendor rooms, bowling tournaments, pool parties, vintage fashion shows, jiving competition, a pin-up contest, tattoo contest, burlesque bingo, more cool people than can be crammed into one casino, and a tattoo lounge. More to come on that later.
As the headlights and tailights streamed into neon ribbons on the strip not far away, the party raged on at the Orleans Casino as friends hung together wearing their best vintage. It's a gathering that takes you back to the 40's and 50's in its retro best. Starting on a Thursday and running through Sunday, coolness oozes out at every opportunity, with period dress. I enjoy hitting the car show lot with the camera several times each day trying to get that perfect shot. After meeting up with 'ol friends as well as making new ones, even into the night hours with a brew in hand, it's then time to head back into the casino to have the bitchin' bands rock me. It's really hard to elaborate on everything that happens on the jam packed schedule, but one thing that keeps this happening fresh is the way Tom Ingram, the father of the party, has the foresight to reinvent the gathering each year. This year, tattooing was expanded from one artist in one of the vendors rooms, to its own three day Tattoo Lounge sponsored by Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum. That's just where I'm going to pick up on this party. I'm sure every other rod blog that was there will be jumping on the south-bound train posting shots of all the coolified cars...but not me, done that for the last two years.
Hell, let's get a little crazy and look at the buzzing coming from the tat-room... But first, tattooing began over 5,000 years ago, way before this car genre took hold and at this event, tats are the word. In the 'ol days, tattoos were probably created by
accident, someone had a small wound, and rubbed it with a hand that was dirty
with soot and ashes from the fire and once the wound healed, they saw that a
mark stayed permanently. It then moved to being done with improvised materials of all sorts. Today, it's pretty high-tech with very cool colored inks and elaborate designs as well as 'ol school Big House "Blue Indian" aka. black, with some shading. The car people at this event know what it's all about today...it's art, you put on yourself because you like it and you're proud to display. So call it sleeves, jus' one tat, or a body covered, you'll find it there and it's all sweet...
Just some of the artists working away were; Bruno Corso, Shannon Nordin, James Ferreira, Tinta Rebelde, James White, Kong, Sick Mike, Mike Fite, Shawn Tuenge, Loaf, and Tony 2 Timess among others. So lets get into the machines, grips, needles, tubes and ink caps.
For next years party, the dates are April 17-20, 2014. Here's their site: www.vivalasvegas.net
Related post: Viva Las Vegas 15
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