Hidden behind office buildings and snuggled between apartment buildings, the Treehouse peeks out mischievously from Chambers Road in Grandview. Formerly known as “Andyman’s Treehouse,” the bar was opened by the late, great CD101 DJ Andyman Davis and Quinn Fallon in 1999. From the bar’s birth, local musicians and their comrades have relied on The Treehouse as a home base; a place to jam, a place to regroup, and of course, a place to drink $2 beers.
“We are primarily a ‘shot and a beer’ bar.” says Philip Palma, owner of The Treehouse since 2008. “We sell a lot of Jameson and a lot of PBR. People seem to like that.” The Treehouse does offer a small craft beer selection but they mainly cater to their tried-and-true hipster crowd, offering $2 PBR, High Life, and Stroh’s.
Upon entrance of The Treehouse, your first step should be to the left where you’ll find the bar. Choose your booze and hang in the living-room-esque ambiance, complete with a couch and a loveseat. If you take a right from the entrance, past the pool table, you’ll enter the intimate venue of the bar complete with its namesake- a giant tree growing in the middle of the room. Straight back, smoke your cigs and socialize on the secluded patio with plenty of picnic tables and benches.
Without a doubt, The Treehouse has spawned some of the most prized music in Columbus. Local Bands Ghost Shirt, Two Cow Garage, Low Men, Wing and Tusk, and Palma’s band Strangers in Daylight have emerged from the creativity within The Treehouse, just to name a few. But these dudes don’t just play there.
“If you throw a rock you’re going to hit six or seven musicians on any given night. Tommy Young and James Fisher of [local band] Low Men work there. Every guy that works door plays in a band,” says Palma, “A lot of beards, a lot of dudes that play tunes.” (Pay attention, ladies.)
Phil suggests that readers check out The Treehouse on Wednesday nights for Open Mic Night hosted by Joe Peppercorn. “Joe is hard to describe. He’s the most original, unique open-mic host I’ve seen,” He says. For instance, one Wednesday last December Joe played every Beatles song in chronological order. He started playing at 6 pm and didn’t quit until 2:18 am. “The whole bar was singing.” Phil remembers.
Look, I’m not going to lie and tell you that The Treehouse is for everyone, because it’s not. It’s small, dark, and the drink selection is limited. But if you want good local music and cheap booze all night long, then check it out. If you’re looking for something cheesy that you can find on every corner, keep moving. The Treehouse has a soul of its own; respect it.
Find a complete schedule of bands playing at the Treehouse, as well as booking information and directions at www.treehousecolumbus.com.