Synopses & Reviews
In Soul on Bikes
, East Bay Dragons Motorcycle Club founder Tobie Gene Levington’s personal journey transforms him from a southern sharecropper’s son into a street leader riding a chopped Harley through the acid-laced days of Haight-Ashbury and Monterey Pop. In the tumultuous 1960s Levingston and the East Bay Dragons exploded onto Oakland streets alongside the Black Panther Party. Levingston and the Dragons survived the cocaine-fueled 1980s and rode their Harleys to glory into the new millennium. Filled with wisdom, joy, sadness, anger, and redemption, Soul on Bikes
is the previously untold tale of an underground African-American culture, a hell-raising history of an all-black motorcycle club that defied the odds by surviving its wild 40-plus-years-long ride. Co-authors Keith and Kent Zimmerman are a unique writing team of twin brothers. They collaborated with Ralph “Sonny” Barger on Hell’s Angel: The Life and Times of Sonny Barger and the Hell’s Angels Motorcycle Club
. They also co-authored Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs
, the autobiography of John “Johnny Rotten” Lydon of the Sex Pistols.
Frost Illustrated Feb. 7, 2007
“Soul on Bikes: The East Bay Dragons MC and the Black Biker Set is a fascinating biography of a fascinating black man and an equally fascinating black movement.”
In Soul on Bikes, Tobie Levingston recounts the legacy of the East Bay Dragons Motorcycle Club, an all-black, all-Harley, all-chopper group of motorcyclists whose experience is an important untold portion of African-American history.
The East Bay Dragons Motorcycle Club has gunned their Harleys through the meanest streets of Oakland, California, since the 1950s. Before Rosa Parks took her historic bus ride and before Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, and Huey P. Newton and the Black Panthers stood bravely for equal rights, the East Bay Dragons MC risked life and limb during the days when it was a revolutionary act for a black man to ride a Harley chopper. Written by Tobie Levingston, the club's original founder, Soul on Bikes offers a slice of underground American and African-American history you're unlikely to read in any textbook. Levingston and his colorful cast of misfits and comrades are an all-black, all-Harley, all-chopper group of motorcyclists who have found more than their fair share of violence and redemption on the battlegrounds of urban America--and their legacy is an important untold portion of African-American history. Soul on Bikes recounts the club's adventures with humor, attitude, and, most important, soul.
About the Author
Tobie LevingstonTobie Gene Levingston was born in Tallulah, Louisiana, the county seat of Madison Parish. He founded the East Bay Dragons car club in Oakland, California, which eventually became the East Bay Dragons Motorcycle Club, one of the nation's leading all-black, Harley-only motorcycle clubs. Tobie Gene has been the sole president of the East Bay Dragons MC since the club's formation in 1959.www.eastbaydragons.com
Table of Contents
Foreword Acknowledgments 1 Scootin' Back in the Pack 2 Layin' It By: Scratch Ankle and the Sharecropping Days 3 Fast Times in Jingletown 4 Enter the Dragons: The Fighting Levingstons 5 Butthole Shifters and Suicide Clutches 6 Here Come Them Dirty Dragons 7 Monterey Pop and Days of Love & Haight 8 Panther Power and the Long Hot Summer 9 Head Start Up the Grapevine 10 Bags, Brawls, and Bears 11 On the Side of Angels 12 Heavy Racin' 13 That Damned Pipe: The Cocaine '80s 14 The Chosen Few, the LA Defiant Ones, and the Black L.A. Set 15 Devil on My Shoulder 16 The Saga of Dangerous John 17 A Younger Breed of Dragons 18 Elimination Index