Royal Lock and Key / Trendsetters Barber Shop
9851 63 Avenue Nw
There is nothing particularly new about the news that Country superstars Brooks and Dunn done broke up. In mid-August of this year, after 18 years and 11 albums, Kix and Ronnie decided to hang up their shared crown as Country Music’s biggest duo. While the story of how they met may differ from the ridiculous genesis narrative laid out in their first album’s liner notes, it is generally accepted that Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn were separately hacking away at fledgling solo careers in the late 80’s when Arista Records’ Tim DuBois suggested that they link up. Ever since, theirs has been a fairly deadly combination (judge them by their successes, not by their sullen faces and bad facial hair). The importance of that ‘just right’ combination is something that Al (I think that is his name…) at barber shop slash locksmith joint Royal Lock and Key / Trendsetters Barber can certainly identify with.
After a day of G-Saling on Argyll Road, I decided to stop in to fix my fade. Trendsetters Barber Shop, the barber side of Royal Lock and Key, is a quaint shop with one hair-chair and a very small wait time. The walls are plastered with pictures of vintage cars, old calendars and lock paraphernalia. Al is very nice and was quick to tell the story about his unique business model. He was very curious about which shops I normally get cut by and seemed to know every barber’s name that I dropped.
I wasn’t in dire need of a cut, so I only had him fix my sides, do my neck, and take a little bit off the top. When I asked him to take care of the hair between my eye-brows he lectured me on the dangers of shaving unwanted hair. When I told him that Ted did it without hesitation, he scoffed.
I would explain exactly how Al came to be in both the hair slicing and the lock de-icing businesses, or which business came first, or where his priority lies, but those are his stories and they are ones that he is more than willing to tell.
After his first attempt at the cut, I asked that he take another inch off the top and he did so without any hesitation. I paid the fair price, tipped well, and left looking like a Brand New Man.
Quick note: Right next door to Royal Lock and Key is Royal Stamp and Sign Co. Across the street is Sentinel Self-Storage who use a British royal guard as their logo. They really like to play up that Argyll angle out there.