B.C. barber among Canada’s 10 best

Brett Kelly from The Gentlemen’s Shop and Shave Parlour a top-10 finalist in national online vote

He and his band mates in the Kelowna-based rockabilly group The Dragstrip Devils often didn’t have enough money on the road for haircuts.

So guitarist Brett Kelly took up barbering.

Since then, the co-owner of Vernon’s highly popular The Gentleman’s Shop and Shave Parlour, when not laying down grooves with his magic fingers with the Devils, is slicking back, cutting and styling men’s hair.

To the point the 29-year-old with a barber pole tattooed to the left side of his neck, and rockabilly legends Stray Cats’ mega hit Stray Cat Strut music notes tattooed over most of his body, has become one of Canada’s top cutters.

Kelly is a top-10 finalist for Canada’s Best Barber of the Year Award, which will be presented in February at the Manology Convention in Montreal, put on by BaByliss4Barbers.

“It’s pretty crazy, a complete shock,” said Kelly as he tended to customer Wade Barrett’s hair in Chair No. 1 (the shop opened with two in 2015) at the 31st Avenue facility, with the Devils’ LP (yes, vinyl) Hot Damn playing on the shop’s turntable.

Canada’s best barber will be determined in an online vote at pollev.com/manologyshow. Kelly is up against two other B.C. barbers – Matty Conrad of Victoria and Drich of Vancouver. The other finalists are from Mississauga, Winnipeg, Montreal (2), Toronto (2) and Ottawa.

“Matty is one of the most influential barbers in the country,” said Kelly. “To be nominated with him is quite an honour.”

Kelly, whose current hair is dyed platinum blond, went to a local barber to have his hair cut in a rockabilly style, ie, slick-backed or in a pompadour.

When the Dragstrip Devils hit the road, money was tight or, as they discovered, salons wouldn’t cut their hair.

“So I started cutting the guys’ hair,” said Kelly. “It wasn’t that good at first, but I fell in love with barbering.”

While working in Kelowna, he met fellow barber enthusiast Andrew Pye and, together, they opened their shop in Vernon two years ago.

“Our shop and town are so fortunate to have Brett work his magic and share his passion everyday,” said Pye. “Cast your vote for Brett and let’s show what he means to us for all he does for others. Big things for this man going forward.”

No argument there from Barrett.

“I’ve been coming to Brett ever since they opened,” said Barrett. “He’s the best haircutter ever. He pays attention to details, he’s friendly and he has a very good memory; he remembers everything.”

George Arambasich has been travelling from Kelowna to Vernon to have Kelly cut his hair.

“I saw him in Kelowna. He’s the best. It’s as simple as that,” said Arambasich.

To report a typo, email:


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


Vernon’s Brett Kelly, co-owner of The Gentlemen’s Shop and Shave Parlour in Vernon, is a finalist for Canada’s Best Barber of the Year. (Roger Knox/Morning Star)

Just Posted

Consult before creating Fauquier reserve: CCT

Sinixt seek consultation before Westbank reserve gets go-ahead

Needles killer frightened many in our town: BC author

Roy Bugera disrupted life in a quiet Vancouver Island village before moving to Arrow Lakes

Nakusp vets leaving after 30 years

Practice has been sold and new owners will take over in a month

Rebuilding a life after a fateful fire

Doug and Heather Peters reflect on how a Christmas fire upended their lives

Nakusp council tax increase ‘very fair’: CAO

But village bill less than half of final property taxes

VIDEO: Climber ‘catches the sunrise’ over city atop B.C. crane

Police warn ‘rooftopping’ poses risk to climber, public and first responders

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Salmon Arm community cheers on Natalie Wilkie as she wins first gold medal

Local skier tops the podium in 7.5km race at the PyeongChang Paralympics

Experts: Society has a role in trying to prevent domestic violence

Experts are speaking out following the murder of a woman and her son in Ontario

Progress on fixing Phoenix pay system backlog could be short-lived: Ottawa

Feds have said they won’t try to recover money overpaid until all outstanding issues are fixed

Northern lights chasers in Canada discover new type named ‘Steve’

Phenomenon linked to a powerful current created by charged particles in Earth’s upper atmosphere

Washington state backs B.C. in pipeline dispute

Governor Jay Inslee says he is ‘allied’ with the province on Trans Mountain expansion projection

SAY WHAT? Readers weigh in on high-speed rail to U.S.

B.C. to contribute $300,000 to a million-dollar business study on the proposed project

B.C.-based CEO charged with conspiring to sell unhackable phones to criminals

Vincent Ramos of Richmond, was arrested last week in Seattle in years-long undercover operation

Most Read