Until recently, and I do mean the last few weeks, I had never heard of Ashbury Guitars. However, I have long been on the lookout for an electro-acoustic guitar with cutaway as I frequently use the higher frets and they are the devil to reach comfortably without that cutaway.
I frequently view the listings on ebay, more as a whim than a serious buying attempt, and was quite surprised to see this guitar being offered as a medium range guitar with a very low price.
I did my usual trick of sitting it out until the final few minutes of the auction and it was clear that only the original bidder was interested. I had expected this guitar to be quite expensive so I decided how much I was prepared to spend and during the last few seconds went in with my bid. Another sniper had also been lying in wait but even so my bid beat his and I bought the guitar for an utterly ridiculous price.
I collected the guitar and brought it home and was thoroughly satisfied with it. The seller had told me he’d had it for ‘several years’ and it had been a superb instrument for him.
I immediately set about to restring it as the previous owner had heavy gauge strings on it which to me are like playing railway lines. I stripped the guitar down, cleaned the neck and polished the body and then restrung it with 9s and reset the neck. I was immediately taken with how easy this is to play – the neck is set up like a rock guitar with a very low action at the 12th fret. The tone rings out beautifully and the electronics are superb.
I was so impressed I decided to find out some more about this instrument – alas, there is little to be found. Ashbury Guitars are produced by a parent company called Gremlin Music and are renowned for their range of Celtic stringed instruments. In 2007 they decided to start producing a mid-quality range of guitars and commissioned a factory in Vietnam to manufacture them. However, my guitar states that it was made in Korea – more intriguing.
I sent an email to Gremlin Music and received a very nice reply form Chris there who told me this guitar was probably around 6 years old and retailed for around £175.
I would love to know more about this superb range of instruments and if any of you out there can shed more light on this then please let me know.
In conclusion, I now have the guitar I have long been looking for and am one happy chappy.