Famous Old Time Music Company was established in Cincinnati, OH in
1972 by Harry Sparks and Mack Smith. These two college boys had
been caught up in the surge of interest in bluegrass and folk music
brought on by the catchy sounds of the theme music from the TV show
'The Beverly Hillbillies' and the two hit movies 'Deliverance' and
'Bonnie and Clyde'. Initially the store was housed in a long,
narrow building which had been a Graeter's Ice Cream Shop. The
store had a limited selection of merchandise and a small repair
facility, but a booming interest in jamming and playing bluegrass
Ownership of the store transferred to bluegrass bassist Rich Hart in
the late 1970s. Famous Old Time Music ended this era of its
development with dealership privileges from Martin Guitar Company,
Gibson Company, Gold Star Banjo Company, and assorted string, book,
and accessory suppliers. There was also a very active local
Cincinnati following who traded at the store and came regularly to
enjoy jam sessions and socializing with picking pals.
In 1984, Rich decided to change careers and advertised Famous Old
Time Music Company for sale. Cincinnati's own bluegrass legend,
Vernon McIntyre, saw this as the fulfillment of a longtime dream.
Having been active as a consultant during the start up phase of the
store and having traded and jammed at the store throughout its
history, Vernon was intimately familiar with the merchandise,
musicians, and fans of the music. His reputation as a professional
musician and teacher prepared him well for the role of leader of
Vernon, his wife to be, Kitty, and her brother Andy Schaeffer became
partners in the store in 1984. The Famous Old Time Music Company
grew into a profitable enterprise catering to local bluegrass and
6019 Vine Street
Another of Vernonís longtime dreams was to have his own concert hall
and festival site. In 2001, Vernon and Kitty purchased a 20,000
square foot show/retail facility in Wapakoneta, Ohio. The concert
hall, called Boatwhistle Memorial Hall in honor of Vernonís father,
could seat 500 people. The property also had 8 acres of level
parking for festivals. The Wapakoneta facility was home to the
weekly Friday evening jam sessions, too.
The advent of the internet brought an end to this era in the saga of
the Famous Old Time Music Company. With retail sales foundering
because of the low prices available on new and used instruments via
the internet, Vernon and Kitty have chosen to focus on the
Cincinnati area and to emphasize the service end of the business.
Demand continues to be strong for both private lessons and repairs.
Click here for details
Lessons, Repair, and Sales
EMAIL Kitty: click here
All products mentioned are registered trademarks or trademarks of their
Questions or problems regarding this web site should be directed to
Copyright © 1998-2013 Famous Old Time Music Company.
All rights reserved.
Last modified: 4/24/13