Joe Tanner

I usually don’t start a bio of the Red Rocker owners near birth … but w long time born Bay Area & Marin County resident “Smok’n Joe” (Nick name given by Sammy Hagar himself, to one of his two main bike technicians …) one’s got to start at the beginning.

Speaking of “start” a bio of a man that has heard more starting gate pistols, whistles & gates as a racer of BMX, has done more than just worked in & races in the dirt. but tasted it.  His bike work knowledge heavily began sweating & learning at Red Wood Bike Center in Santa Rosa 1980.

On between working at shop, and racing on the track in a town of Sebastopol, west of Santa Rosa he met long time & experiences bike mechanic Bucky Berardi. Within the many races w mutual friends in the genre, Bucky & Joe kept in touch … as fate would have it. during a Montrose tune playing thru the shop, Bucky mentions “you’ll never believe who my brother-in-law is …” … within a few months, in walks Sammy Hagar! 

By 1984 , seeing and hearing & living stories around the bike business was the life of the mechanics … and soon enough by 1984 area … Sammy purchases Corte Madera (as u can see by UBER ULTRA RARE RR PROMO POSTER FEATURED HERE … ) Sammy’s is interested in, and after constant talks hooks up w renowned designer and at that time bike builder himself Gary Fisher w his company name at that time “Fisher Mountain bikes” and this long talked about and carefully designed with spec colors NO ONE HAS EVER SEEN , “All Red Frame with Murder Black components “ is born : Fisher mountain bikes Sammy Hagar RED ROCKER !

And the most unique and “1st” about Joe … is his bike boss, the SAMbassador, gifts his employee with a Red Rocker. “Smoke what happened to your bike man?”, Joe replies: I sold it. Sam points out an RR in the box “would that fit? then Take it!”, and that’s the bicycle, with an extra autograph, double signed, that you see displayed herein today. 

Thank you, “Smok’n Joe”, for sharing your story, your time in such fun and memorable special history in your life. And as importantly, THANK YOU, to you & Bucky Berardi for putting all our Red Rockers together.

When Joe & his family and the pack that adopted them six (6) beloved boxers, Sammy, Rocky, Rosie, Lucy, Rudy & Cody, w his loving wife Debbie are not out in the summer fun & water jet skiing … they ARE STILL OUT, in the summer fun …& water, jet skiing. I very much appreciated talking to this big-hearted man, as Aaron Hagar assured, he would be. Always realizing it’s right before or after, he’s launched his water sport equipment ….” if it’s hot I’m on jet ski’s if not, I’m in the dirt.”