"Charlie’s greatest contribution to the jazz world was sartorial. He was friendly with Charlie Davidson, the proprietor of the Andover Shop on Holyoke Street in Cambridge, and during the day he accompanied Desmond (note: Paul Desmond, alto saxophonist for Dave Brubeck) to the shop. Under Mr. Bourgeois’s guidance, jazz musicians soon resembled the denizens of Harvard Square. Brubeck and Desmond were hardly the only musicians to benefit from this service; Charlie Davidson’s tailoring also fit right in to the Modern Jazz Quartet’s image. Miles Davis was known to visit the shop when he was in town. Roy Hanes became a customer, and before long he had been cited by George Frazier in Esquire magazine’s “Best-Dressed American Performers,” alongside the likes of Cary Grant and Fred Astaire."

George Wein, Myself Among Others: A Memoir

"In the mid-fifties, Miles took to the Ivy League look in fashion, having his clothes made at the epicenter of preppy fashion, the Andover Shop in Cambridge’s Harvard Square, where tailor Charlie Davidson dressed him in jackets of English tweed or madras with narrow lapels and natural shoulder, woolen or chino trousers, broadcloath shirts with button-down collars, thin knit or rep ties, and Bass Weejun loafers. It was a look that redefined cool and shook those who thought they were in the know. Some like Boston Herald columnist George Frazier, reacted badly. Calling him “the Whilom War Lord of the Weejuns,” he accused Davis of no longer being cool, but of merely showing off…in fact, of having become a ‘fink.’"

Uptown Conversation: The New Jazz Studies

"I’ve never been a fan of ‘yes sir’ and ‘no sir’. Enough with all that pussy cunt shit."

C. Davidson on customer service

"Recently, Charlie Davidson of the Andover Shop told me Brooks Brothers ‘is dead’ adding, ‘it looks like an Italian department store.’"

The Trad

"Let me tell you something, John. The whole Thom Browne skinny-f*ggy suit shit is over. It’s dead."

C. Davidson speaking to The Trad

"Maybe the sheep caught the clap or something. Don’t worry, it won’t rub off on you."

C. Davidson, to a customer complaining about pilling on his Shetland sweater.

"I’d cuff my boxer shorts if I could."

Charlie Davidson, when asked if he prefers cuffs.


George also spent a great deal of time back in Boston through these years—mostly at his father’s house in West Roxbury….but now and again at Charlie Davidson’s home in Belmont. Davidson was proprietor of the Andover Shop, a men’s clothing store in Harvard Square. He was a close friend of Charlie Bourgeois and George Wein, and frist met Frazier at Storyville about the time of the Lee Wiley Adventure. The two men became fast friends. They discovered that their tastes in clothes, jazz, books, and good times were very nearly identical. Through the last fifteen years of Frazier’s life, Charlie Davidson was his closest friend and only confidant.

It is not unfair to suggest that Charlie taught George Frazier everything he knew about clothes. Though George had always been a natty dresser, he never tried to pass himself off as an expert in the field until he got to know Davidson and started picking his brain. Davidson would take Frazier with him on buying trips to New York. In the Andover Shop, George would stand at Davidson’s side as he watched his tailors cut the cloath for a coat or suit. Davidson was a big help in the preparation of George’s “The Art of Wearing Clothes,” a 10,000-word piece of men’s fashion that ran in Esquire in September 1960.


an excerpt from Chas. Fountain’s Another Man’s Poison:  The Life and Writing of Columnist George Frazier

"I must apologize to Davidson, who is not the man I’ve hated since 2003. It’s the other guy at the Andover Shop, with more hair."

F. Leung, co-owner of StyleForum, on his long-held grudge

"Is this the same “Andover Shop” that’s on Holyoke St? That place is awesome. A few years ago my baggage got “lost” by United on a flight up for an interview, and I was wearing a t-shirt, breakaway pants, and sandals from the flight. I needed cheap clothing for the interview so I asked some people on the street where a few clothing stores were. Hah. I went in there, took one look, and immediately turned around. This extraordinarily old guy stopped me and asked me why I was in such a hurry; I explained my situation, and after a few awkward minutes, he started chuckling and gave me directions to the mall. He seemed pretty friendly to me. And I’m far from a WASP being, well, Korean."

Styleforum member thebeatblitz on his Andover Shop experience, written in the same thread as NukeMeSlowly’s. We can only hope the gentleman he met was the legendary Charlie Davidson