Dean Del­ray

Hot Bike - - Faces -

Every­one has that one friend who has their fin­ger on the pulse. Then ev­ery once in a while you’ll come across the guy who has the stran­gle­hold on the scene. My go-to guy for that is the one-and-only Dean Del­ray. More than 33 years ago he started out rid­ing a 1965 Iron­head Sporty he af­fec­tion­ately called the “Fonz,” and the pace has never let up.

Dean has owned scores of bikes to in­clude five West Coast Chop­pers and even the in­fa­mous “Chongo” (Jesse James’ per­sonal bike). Cur­rently he’s spun on his new 2017 Road King with the Mil­wau­kee-eight 107-inch mo­tor.

This is one busy cat, and it’s rare to get him sit­ting down for a change. Our in­ter­ac­tions are usu­ally best de­scribed at mu­sic venues, bike shows, or in the air­port some­where. Dean is prob­a­bly the fun­ni­est guy out there rid­ing a mo­tor­cy­cle. Over the past six and a half years he’s done at least 3,000 stand-up com­edy shows, most of them by way of mo­tor­cy­cle. He’s got a Net­flix spe­cial in the works with Bill Burr, and if you check your lo­cal rags I bet he’s in the lineup at least once over the week­end. He truly is one of the hard­est-work­ing dudes in com­edy.

I’ve known the guy for 17 years and have seen the po­ten­tial un­fold­ing in front of my eyes. At one point he was a bud­ding mu­si­cian with a record deal on Linda Perry’s (4 Non Blon­des) la­bel and was on tour open­ing for Jakob Dy­lan’s band The Wall­flow­ers. He switched gears and went com­pletely af­ter the com­edy and has carved his own niche with the pop­u­lar pod­cast (itunes) Let There Be Talk where re­cent guests in­clude Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age), Omar Ro­driguez (At the Drive-in), and Roland Sands. He just re­cently re­turned from the last Alice in Chains tour where he opened up for them—as a co­me­dian, not a mu­si­cian.

We are both mo­tor­cy­cle epi­cure­ans and have owned pretty much ev­ery pow­er­plant that’s avail­able out there at one time or an­other. BMW, Du­cati, West Coast, or Road Kings and Street Glides, it doesn’t mat­ter who the maker is. We don’t dis­crim­i­nate, and we’re con­stantly look­ing for the ul­ti­mate ride full of fla­vor. Dean gets it and thinks a bike should be like a cres­cent wrench: ad­justable and some­what multi-pur­pose— kind of like his ethos. Dean be­lieves some of his suc­cess in the com­edy scene is from ac­tu­ally rid­ing to the shows. He would ar­rive be­fore any of the other comics be­cause they were usu­ally stuck in traf­fic while he was busy split­ting lanes.

Dean knows every­one it seems. Aki, Paul Cox, JJ, Roland, Rock­a­billy, Racht­man, Bill Wall, Chop­per Dave, Decker, Caleb, Gilby… You get the idea. I men­tion that be­cause if Dean’s name comes up when he’s not around, peo­ple will usu­ally do their im­pres­sion of him, which funny enough al­ways comes out the same way: crack­led voice, ex­cited, and full of en­ter­tain­ment. Just like Dean. Do your­self a fa­vor and check out de­an­del­ray.com.

“A BIKE SHOULD BE LIKE A CRES­CENT WRENCH: AD­JUSTABLE AND SOME­WHAT MULTI-PUR­POSE—KIND OF LIKE HIS ETHOS.”

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