Combining 3 of my favorite things, the video for my band Ashes to Empire features my 1978 Saab 99 Turbo, footage shot in 2008 while on a drive between Redding and Santa Rosa with my 3 kids. Of all the cars I’ve owned in my life, the 99 Turbo is the one I would love to have back. There’s just no match for the raw feel and character of that car.
There is the 1982 Saab 900 that was just an awesome little car. It’s only shortfall was that it was non-turbo and it would have been nice to have a sunroof. That was the one that had to be sacrificed to make my wife okay with adding the 99 Turbo to the collection (keep in mind I also already had the 2001 Saab Viggen at the time).
My old Saabs have played prominently in my efforts to keep my musical efforts going all these years, traveling to the various shows and recording sessions, and also as the perfect place to review drafts of songs while zoning out on a long drive. I’m hoping the first Ashes to Empire release will make it out in early 2014.
This post is by Saablime guest blogger Tyler Allen Hoss, aka “Phenom”. Phenom’s recent purchase of a 1998 Saab 900 SE Turbo inspired him to write the song featured in this video. Check out the video and then read the story behind the music.
I’m an 18 year old kid from Southern Connecticut who goes by the name Phenom. I’m a true artist who believes in hard work and that if you can dream it you can do it.
Recently I released my second music video on YouTube for the first single off my latest project titled “Murphys Law” which has been released on Christmas. The Song in this video was going to be “900″.
The story behind the 900 was that over the summer I turned 18 and finally saved up enough money to buy my own car. After weeks of Craigslist searching I finally found one car that caught my eye. It was a 1998 Saab 900 SE Turbo with heated leather seats and woodgrain dash. The owner was a simple man who was also a Saab mechanic. The Saab was listed on Kelley Blue Book for $2,800 and he was only asking $1,500, after reviewing the car’s outside and interior I went for the test drive. The minute I felt the turbo kick in I fell in love. I ended up buying the car that day.
As I cleaned, waxed, and detailed my new Saab I started jotting down lyrics about the car. In a few short days I had my own personal theme song for whenever I drive. It features everything from funny details to driving statistics. It is my artistic expression of the tool that gets me from A to B everyday in a stylish way. The song itself features a
This has been my dream for the last four years. To do these videos, get on these big name sites, and to see my name on peoples playlists. My whole fanbase and team has now gotten a name: The Dreamers. Everybody living their dream in some way little or big is a dreamer. Help me live mine by supporting and sharing this video, following me on Twitter @ThatDudePhenomand by downloading this song and the discovering the rest on my free album which you can get here http://www.datpiff.com/Phenom-Murphys-Law-mixtape.433949.html.
Thank you for the time and allowing me to express how much I do truly love my Saab.
The Saab that started it all: Phenom's 1998 Saab 900 SE Turbo
Just wanted to make a quick post since I’ve been neglecting Saablime for so long.
It can be a real workout these days when 90% of the discussion about Saabs is the continued drama of the bankruptcy and new buyers and what will happen next.
Yesterday I was driving back from a conference in San Francisco in my 2001 Viggen. Suddenly I noticed a white Hyundai with Oregon plates next to me and the people in the car kept waving at me. I was trying to figure out how I knew them when the young boy in the back seat rolled down the window, giving me the thumbs up and said “Nice Viggen!”. I could see the dad in the front seat grinning ear-to-ear and saying “I have one at home!”.
Yes, there is nothing like the love for our Saabs. Other people can say and think what they want. We’ll continue to feel the joy that only we know – the love of a Saab.
I’m pretty sure this will be the only non-Saab video I post on this site, so Saab lovers, please read on before you pass this post up – I think you’ll appreciate it. April 7 was my grandfather Carl X. Meyer’s birthday so in honor of his memory, I post this video I shot way back in 1996 in my home town of St. Louis, Missouri. I think my fellow Saab enthusiasts will quickly see why I decided to post this and exactly where my love of Saabs and philosophy about enjoying these cars was instilled early on.
In addition to being my grandfather’s birthday, April 7, was the day he served as the best man at my wedding in 2001. My grandfather taught himself industrial design at the St. Louis Public Library in between shifts as a cook at a restaurant in Downtown St. Louis during the Depression. He managed to turn that self-education into a life-long industrial design career that included designing the lighting on the Harley Davidson Motorcycle factory line that he had watched dreamily as the bikes rolled out of the factory when he was a boy in Milwaukee.
I recently turned over 92,000 miles on my 1988 Saab 900 SPG. It’s always a struggle as I approach a mileage milestone… (especially as I near the 100,000-mile mark) do I keep driving the car or keep the mileage down to preserve it? Luckily I have a 4-mile (total there and back) daily commute – which I split with my 2001 Saab Viggen – so it reduces the day-in-day-out urgency of deciding whether I should protect my ‘daily driver’ or not, but still a person needs a plan and a strategy, right?
Overall, I opt for my grandfather’s philosophy: cars are made to be driven. Especially those we love. That said, here’s to those who preserve them and keep those pristine time-pieces that crop up from time to time to give us all the gift of a perfect, un-aged artifact of our past.
For me, I’ll keep driving my Saabs. The thought of having several hundred thousand miles (maybe even 1,000,000! All hail Peter Gilbert : ) shared between me and my Saab is a lot more exciting to me than having a vintage Saab with low mileage. I also love having my kids climb all over the car and plowing through mud puddles (and even off road as needed), and pushing the car to its limits as a delivery truck, a camping tent, the best place ever to be on a road trip… to use this car as the delivery vehicle to everything I want my life to be. And this includes the continued restoration work to keep it looking and running the best it can after these ‘adventures’ I take alone and with my family.
My grandfather passed away in 2002. Happy Birthday, Grandpa. And here’s to all of the great ones who made a commitment to quality. When all is said and done, true love lives on.
PS. My grandfather never had a middle name. He added the ‘X’ because as a designer, he liked the added balance and mystery it gave to his name. Everyone I knew, forever knew him as ‘Carl X.’
Saablime Photo of the Week comes from a past post from Motormaven’s Carspotting. Although I normally prefer classic, original styling, John’s Webber’s orange 1978 Saab 99 Turbo continues to be a favorite.
This comment was posted on the YouTube page and really captures the essence of Saab ownership: “Saab owners enjoy a uniquely intimate relationship with their beloved company. Beyond mere product loyalty, it is the sort of affection most brands can only dream of, as if each and every customer feels personally vested with the success of the organization. It’s what compelled thousands of Saab drivers worldwide to protest GM’s dreadful stewardship of the company. And to it Saab owes its very existence today.”