My friend Zac took a chance on my city. He hung out his shingle, opening Consolidated Barbershop in the basement of one of Flint’s most well-known tattoo shops, Consolidated Ink and Steel. Zac’s shop isn’t just a place to get a shave or a trim, though. Consolidated Barbershop is becoming a hub that’s connecting people and rekindling a sense of community, especially among those involved in Flint’s underground music scene and those that are a part of the downtown culture.

While the shop is tucked out of sight below the tattoo shop, it’s well worth seeking out. After descending the stairs and stepping onto the black and white checkerboard tile you’ll experience a clean shop that is decorated simply with a row of old theater seating on one wall and a few framed punk rock records hanging on the another. The focal point of the room seems to be the small table in the corner that holds a record player and a couple of milk crates filled with Zac’s personal record collection. I was lucky enough to get to choose the music before my last haircut. I’ve also heard of folks bringing their favorite records from home to set the tone for their new looks. Who would have thought  getting a haircut would be such a fun experience?

Check out the indie-film quality promo video for the shop that was shot by Ethan June and then check out the conversation we had below.

1.How did you wind up becoming a barber and opening up shop in Flint, Michigan?

I was at a point in my life where I felt like I needed to make a change. After a few failed college attempts I realized I wasn’t the college sort of dude and I was searching for a trade. I had a conversation with my barber and he kind of just brought it up so after talking to some people about it and getting info from the barber college (Flint Institute of Barbering) I felt like I had to do it! The college itself is extremely demanding and I had to give up my full time job to go to school so I guess I really had no other choice but dive in all the way. I’m sure people thought I was nuts for doing this! The entire school experience was great though. Everyone at that school is great and helped me out so much…with barbering, and also with life as well. They taught me a lot there and I have so much respect for what they do.

What led me into opening up in Flint is something I will get more in depth with in the upcoming question. But, basically, I was hanging out at the tattoo shop for years and years and I just asked them if they would be into it. The fact that I am a part of that place is really surreal and I can honestly say I have the best job ever!!

2. What services do you offer at Consolidated Barbershop?

Right now it’s kinda limited. I do $10 haircuts…any haircut! Man, women, child, it doesn’t matter. Ten bucks. And then a straight razor shave is also $10…but, for you dudes, you can get both a cut and a shave for 15. Down the line I will be offering coloring services, but I’m just not to that point yet.

3. What is it about running a barber shop that you love the most?

The environment rules. I get to hang out with my friends all day long…its great! There is some level of responsibility that goes with it but for the most part its very laid back and easy-going.

4. What do you love the most about living and working in Flint?

I grew up in Fenton but it was the culture of Flint that attracted me to it. I can honestly say if it wasn’t for Joel Rash and the entire Flint Local 432 I would have NO idea where I would be at today. That place really sculpted me to who I am today. I have met so many great people through that place. Growing up in bands you just got used to supporting your friends in other bands as far as going to shows, buying their t-shirts, records, stickers and basically anything else so the support you get from your peers has always been huge. But, now, most of us are old and not in bands but we still support our friends in whatever they decide to pursue. I mean, for me personally, I have had such a huge backing from my friends at the shop. When Mitch (Socia) opens up Bearded Lady Records, he will experience the same support I am getting. Or when a friend of ours DJs at a bar it seems that everyone goes to say hi. It’s great. So yeah, it’s the culture that brought me here but it’s the community that kept me around. There are a lot of young people fighting for Flint to make it better and make an impact within the community. I love this city.

5. Name your 5 top records to listen to while cutting hair?

Phewwwww. Hmm, well, this is by no means in any order. But the top 5 records that I’ve been playing at the shop lately are.

1. Cheap Girls– Giant Orange
2. Royal Thunder- s/t
3. Bruce Springsteen- Live From 75-85
4. Dinosaur Jr.– Beyond
5. Jackson Browne- Running On Empty

Get more info about Consolidated Barbershop here.

    • B
    • April 4th, 2012

    Great work Zac! 🙂

    • marcia
    • April 4th, 2012

    It’s so great to hear positive things are happening in Flint. I grew up in Fenton, too, but remember all of the trips we used to take as kids to downtown Flint. Keep up the good work,guys! And Zach…I know you will do great!

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