Zackary says that she hopes to connect with and serve patrons in the way small record stores once did for her. "We went to Double Entendre as baby punks," says Zackary, of herself and friend (and onetime co-organizer of the Growler Distro) Morgan Matter's experience, "and it was so important to our community."
In fact, it was the 2005 closing of the legendary record shop that motivated Zackary and Matter to create their own version -- but a brick-and-mortar store was too expensive and out of the question. With $100 between them, the women bought up a few seven-inches and set up their first Growler Distro table at Ladyfest Out West that same year. Matter eventually moved on to other projects, but Zackary kept the collection running at shows periodically until this year, when she decided to take it to the next level.
"I had tried to keep Saturday hours at the record store inside Blast-O-Mat," Zackary says with a laugh, "but I don't think a single person came in." She adds that, while the DIY venue's record shop got a lot of traffic when shows were happening, the rest of the time it was pretty dead. Growler continued on as a Distro, but Zackary had bigger plans.
This year, after a lot of asking around, she connected with Yellow Feather Coffee, and a physical version of the store finally began to take shape. The storefront idea had been a longtime desire for the distro, but money was tight, and Zackary needed to find a way to make it a financially sound endeavor. The partnership with Yellow Feather seemed like the perfect match, and construction began in the back of the coffee shop to make room for Growler.
"I just wanted an open space for anyone to be a fan of music," Zackary says of the materialization of the Growler Record Store. And what better place to share a space with than Yellow Feather Coffee, which has, since its relatively recent opening, been a spot for both local and national acts to come through and play for all-ages audiences. The record shop will take up the back half of the space, with easy access through an alley door.
The Growler Record Store's official opening goes down September 3 inside Yellow Feather Coffee at 742 Santa Fe Drive in Denver, with bands starting at 5 p.m. The event is free and open to all ages, with records offered at a one-time specially discounted price in celebration of the event. For more information, visit the event's Facebook page, or check the Growler Distro Tumblr.