Tattoo or Piercing: The Boston Tattoo Company
260 Elm St. Suite 102, (617) 625-8282
As soon as he got his first tattoo at 18, Jason Zube was hooked.
“I liked the whole vibe of the shop, I liked the music they were playing, and I just remember how comfortable everybody looked. The guy was wearing a jean jacket with a hoodie underneath it, and he was just sitting there listening to the Rolling Stones,” he says.
In a time before the internet, Zube couldn’t conceal his curiosity. “The second she started tattooing me, I probably drove her crazy with all the questions I asked.”
He turned to tattoo magazines and books, and worked his way up from a counter job at a nearby tattoo shop. In 2004, Zube started a tattoo parlor on Somerville Avenue called The Painted Bird, which later morphed into The Boston Tattoo Company.
At the shop—which has locations in Davis Square, Cambridge, and Medford—Zube tries to recreate the balance between professionalism and fun that he saw when he was 18.
“I try to make the tattoo experience as memorable as my first time,” he says. “We want people to joke and laugh and have fun and be relaxed. We want people to come back and enjoy themselves, and it’s really hard to do that because it’s like saying ‘Oh, I’m looking forward to going to the dentist’—it’s expensive and it’s painful and it’s permanent. We want to make it as fun as possible.”