Entrepreneurial couple parks its 'magic bus' with retail shop in the Gulch

Sunday, September 25, 2011 at 10:05pm

Molly and Tom Bedell are not your typical business people. And Two Old Hippies — the playfully named and recently opened clothing/stringed-instrument shop in the Gulch — clearly is not a conventional business.

“We have done everything to create vignettes and lifestyles themes throughout the store,” said Molly, pointing to a 1965 model Volkswagen bus anchoring the store’s midsection.

“We call it the Magic Bus,” Tom said. “When we think about the 1960s lifestyle, what better symbol than a Volkswagen bus?”

The Bedells came of age in the 1960s and love classic rock, pop and folk music. Molly digs The Eagles, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, The Doobie Brothers and Little Feat, while Tom counts Bob Dylan, Joan Baez and Peter, Paul & Mary among his faves. Both love The Beatles.

The Bedells recently arrived in Music City from Aspen, Colo., where they met seven years ago and where they opened their first Two Old Hippies in 2009. It was almost instantly successful, so they searched for a second locale. Nashville just made sense, Molly said.

“Tom and I have traveled all over the world and never thought we would land in any place other than Iowa or Colorado,” she said.

The son of legendary former U.S. Rep. Berkley Bedell, Tom grew up in Spirit Lake, Iowa. As a teen in the mid-1960s, the entrepreneurial young man confidently created his own boutique guitar brand and established two retail stores combining vinyl records and guitar sales. 

“That was a time when there was free spirit and we believed we could make America a special place,” Tom said. 

Fast-forward four decades later and Tom has jump-started the making of Bedell Guitars (and acquired Breedlove Guitar Co.), with the brand sold in approximately 200 music shops. With an interior design background, Molly has created clothing brand 2OH — available, of course, at Two Old Hippies.

Melding six-strings, rock ’n’ roll memorabilia and hip fashion, Two Old Hippies — like its gracefully aging owners — is unusual, and fascinating.

“People walk in,” Molly said, “and say, ‘Oh my gosh.’ ” 

Filed under: City News

2 Comments on this post:

By: livinglively57 on 9/26/11 at 12:30

Thank you, Tom & Molly, for building such a unique and fun retail establishment in Nashville and especially in the Gulch! I plan to be a regular customer...beautiful clothes, fun apparel for kids and a real stage! Cool and fun!

By: TharonChandler on 9/26/11 at 7:06

Wells Fargo Bank is Dangerous and Harmful in the way they play games with my Direct Deposit Funds (from my Social Security payments and only income). They have extracted Huge charges when my money comes in and then they often block my access to said funds.

I try to keep cool and quiet yet now i have paid several Hundred in 'cell phone load' charges in my communication to Wells Fargo Bank, of California; after they Strangely cut my access to my ATM debit Card (for the 3rd time unexpectedly on such a travel Trip). Now i am here overseas and i can't even get them to let me send money to myself abroad (though they advertise that service, online) even though i have also now a 'Bank De Oro'; or BDO account here in the Philippines.

The way they did the ATM card block and will not cooperate to transfer my funds, that I have in their bank, is not only poor service but is Dangerous to my safety, abroad.