By Amy Hope
Something is buzzing on the square. It’s not a passing cicada but the sound of hair clippers. Lynchburg is getting a new barbershop. Sim’s Barber Authority will be opening in the old Texaco station (Thomas’ Service Station) on the square very soon.
Steve Vilot has three decades of barber experience. With Sims Barber Lab in Boston and Sims Barber Authority in Nashville, he has set his sights on Lynchburg. His experience is not the typical striped barber pole gig. He is touted as being barber to the stars. With artist and musician clients like Dave Matthews and Eminem, his reputation has grown in the industry. He also sets up pop-up shops at music festivals and professional sporting events. He has set up backstage for the artists at fests like Bonnaroo, Coachella, Austin City Limits, and Lollapalooza. He has also set up at sporting events like the Super Bowl in Miami and The X-Games. Jack Daniel Corporate has hired him to offer services at Sturgis Motorcycle Week. These are not just a tent with some clippers. It is a full operation with wooden floors, comfortable chairs, and hot towels. It’s an experience.
Steve has been part of several Lynchburg events, including pop-ups for the Squires at The Jack Daniels BBQs. In 2017 he was approached by Jack Daniels with the idea of a permanent shop in Lynchburg. His interest was piqued. He toured the old service station and plans were underway. However, the COVID pandemic stalled the progress until now.
Selling his home and moving to middle Tennessee, Vilot is in it for the long haul. His son, Jack, will be the store manager. When Jack was asked if he was ready for the small town living, he said, “Absolutely, I love it.” The father/son duo is an impressive team.
The vintage but edgy shop is attached to the Indian Motorcycle Lynchburg Garage. They will offer men’s cuts and hot shaves, as well as salon services in the future. Haircuts are not the only reason to stop by. There is a variety of grooming supplies, as well as unique apparel. The shop will offer merchandise only available at Sim’s Barber Authority that features the local product. There will be beard oil that has been aged in whiskey barrels. A Nashville company, Press or Dye, has created custom apparel that has been tie-dyed with whiskey and charcoal. He is hoping that even if you don’t need a haircut you can wear some of the cool gear.
Steve said, “I am aware that Lynchburg is a tourist-driven market, but I am excited to be part of the Lynchburg community”. He stated, “I am looking forward to providing services to the local community that has not been available in recent years”. He is ready to add “Lynchburg’s Barber” to his long list of accomplishments.
There will be an opportunity to see what they are all about on Bike Night at Indian Motorcycle Lynchburg Garage on August 28th. They will also have their website and social media sites launching soon. Steve said he has had a very warm welcome to the community and is looking forward to meeting everyone! Stop by and see all of the cool things he has and maybe get the best haircut you have ever had.