Music marketing vet gives back with new bar concept

Upon entering Craft & Vinyl, which opened in Grandview on Wednesday, Aug. 15, you'll count no less than 10 gleaming guitars on display. It's a far cry from what owner Troy Stacy had access to growing up.

“I was lucky to have $200 for a guitar, and that was top-of-the-line,” he said in an early-August interview. “You had to work weeks to get that money. And I just think it'll be special for a young person to come in and be able to pick up a $3,000 Gibson Les Paul and see the sonic difference, and hopefully that will inspire them.”

You heard right. Stacy encourages musicians to use his guitars and other available instruments, as Craft & Vinyl is a recording studio, craft beer bar and vinyl record shop all wrapped up in one.

“All these things go together like peanut butter and chocolate,” Stacy said of the business model, which is the first of its kind in the city. He revamped the building, tearing up two layers of old, commercial carpet to reveal 85-year-old hardwood floors, and raised the ceiling 4 feet. The chic new space features pinball machines, a wood table and bar with yellow stools, and black couches in a cozy lounge area.

The walls are decorated with Mike Martin's rock poster art. “He just has this massive, 20-year archive of stuff, and the world doesn't get to see it,” Stacy said.

The beer, sold in cans, bottles and on draft, is a combination of local, regional and statewide offerings, with a couple domestic options thrown in. The music is a combination of used vinyl donated from the now-closed Ace in the Hole Music exchange, as well as new, 180-gram selections.

“We used some data [to determine] the cornerstone albums that everybody needs to have,” Stacy explained. “And then [we'll] get the neighborhood to tell us what they dig.”

Though Stacy is a drummer in local rock band Crushing Gravity, he's had success in the hip-hop world. Previously, as the vice president of marketing for Ratti Records, he earned platinum and gold records for his work on the “Bulworth” and “Blade” soundtracks, respectively.

Additionally, while working in promotions, he was able to get Columbus band Zedos' music placed on MTV.

“And I never had to leave [the city],” Stacy said. “You can get your foot into the music industry and still maintain your roots in Columbus, Ohio, and I think it's important for people to know that. And hopefully this little place becomes a little jumping-off spot to help kids [and others] do that.”