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Introduction

For more than a decade, Brook Guitars have kept a constant news diary of events, showcaseing some of the beautiful instruments that they have produced or repaired over the years.

On this page we have put the complete past years archives in to one section, separated in to each year. You can navigate and preview each year by using the left hand tab panel.

News 2011

News Archive 2011

To Scroll use the right scroll bar

December 2011

So far, unlike the last couple of years, we've escaped the snow.
Martin made his way down from Staffordshire for his long scale Okement.

He wanted to use home grown woods as far as possible so yew, bog oak, cherry,
walnut and sycamore were all included along with a European spruce top.

We used a mixture of English woods for the rosette and fitted a Fishman Rare Earth pickup,

Some beautiful yew on the back, you can also see the laminated neck here,

Let's zoom in on that,

This may look like ebony but we've used bog oak again for the
head veneer, truss rod cover and fingerboard.

And a bog oak veneer on the back of the headstock,

Mike brought down his Taw and Tamar 015's for us to make up a couple of pickguards
and he picked out some wood for an 015 Tavy.

Tony Hazzard brought us up a copy of his latest CD, he played all the instruments
and used his Taw and one of our ukes extensively!

Tony's written songs for everyone from the Yardbirds to Andy Williams
and this is a collection of his latest.
You can can find out more and buy the album here

Dev from India sent us this photo of himself with the Torridge he bought from Ivor Mairants.

We made this Ash for Keith a while back,
He got in touch again recently to thank us. He wrote:
"There's a magic in the instrument, when played it sings and comes alive.
People who hear it are amazed and enchanted and it certainly has the wow factor"

Now for a bunch of repairs: A replacement end on the cittern headstock we mentioned last month, a set up on this little green Bovey, a Martin refret and a pickup fitting on this reso.

The most common repair we have in - another broken Gibson headstock.

Some repair work and an overhaul to Dave Davies' old Vox Marauder.

This is the oldest instrument we've had in for a refret for a while -
a harp guitar from the 1820's!

Another interesting one here - a tricky side repair on a John Bailey guitar
made for Robert Plant in 1970!

Lastly this year we'd like to leave you with another beautiful rendition from Robbie playing
Comfort My People

Have a good Christmas and see you next year.

November 2011

It's getting colder here at the workshop now but we still managed to find the
occasional sunny day to take a picture or two of our latest customers -
Russell came down for this little Clyst

And Stephen for his reclaimed mahogany 015 Taw.

Here's a close up of the top

And one of the 015 headstock with the gold Gotoh tuners.

Graham came down for the Tavy he'd ordered,

The custom features included a shallower body, one of our alternative bridge shapes, an abalone rosette and a light sunburst on the top,

This yin and yang inlay in bone and ebony on the heel cap

And a rosewood fingerboard and head veneer with Waverly tuners.

Three guitars went out to Oasis with another to follow this week, you can see why we prefer not to have our photos taken!

Following the adventures of TV Smith's well travelled Taw, here it is in Japan played by
Eddie Legend - a great player who seems to be enjoying it!

Eddie was in TV's backing band 'The Japanese Adverts' for a short tour over there.

Alan Stevenson came over to discuss guitar making,
Alan makes some fine instruments with interesting design features.

We're working on quite a few repairs at the moment,
the most interesting is this Manson cittern. The scroll headstock was knocked off
and disappeared after a gig so we're making up a copy from a photo,

Hopefully we'll be able to show you the finished repair next month

We'll end this month's news with Richard Clough
and his Tamar and Lucky Suit

October 2011

We've spent the first part of this month sourcing some interesting timber, cutting it and finding places in the workshop to store it. We picked up some very nice large planks of bubinga and sucupira, they were too large for our own bandsaw so we took them into our friends at National Bee Supplies to re-saw it for us.

Here are some new sides ready for storage

And some freshly waxed backs tucked away for further drying.

Rob Garner brought along some boards from a chestnut tree that had been in his garden
with the intention of us using it for his second Brook, here's Andy slicing it,

And some potential necks, backs and sides.

These two interesting English walnut boards took my fancy,

There were lots of splits and shakes to negotiate but we ended up with
three great looking sets!

This Little Silver and a Lyn went up to Guitar Classics.

Roger came down for a larger pickguard on his 12 string Little Silver.

We love to see pictures of our guitars in action - Ken sent us this one of himself onstage
at The Village Pump Folk Club in Trowbridge.

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Lesli, from Stockholm, bought his baritone Tavy from Ivor Mairants last year,

He was kind enough to send us this link to a video of him playing this instrumental
Eternal Hymn

I think we'll use the rest of the October news to put up some of the new YouTube clips,
we're intending to update to site soon and have a section devoted to video.
Check out Marcus Corbett and Nitin Gaikwad playing live in Delmenhorst here

Here are a couple of clips of Ian Anderson using the guitar we made for him
Life is a Long Song & Wondering Aloud

And one of Florian Ophale playing the little Creedy we made for Ian about fifteen years ago!
Andantino

Some fine singing and playing by Paul R Rogers on Waters Edge

Andy Lale has put up the first video now he's getting to grips with the 8 string,
nylon strung Taw we made for him earlier in the year,
unfortunately the volume is a little low on God Bless the Child

Thanks again to Robbie for this one - it includes photos we took while we were building his baritone Tavy - Star of the County Down

Lastly Robbie's beautiful arrangement of Brigg Fair

Keep an eye out for next month's news - there are some rather nice guitars we've just completed we'd like to show you.

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September 2011

We'd like to introduce an interesting new model in our range -
it's an 'f' hole flat top based on the Taw,

We cross braced it with some additional fan braces, here's a shot before it went together

We thought a traditional sunburst suited it and also mounted a fingerboard mounted Kent Armstrong pickup, we're really pleased with the results - what do you think of it?

Earlier in the month we met up with a lot of old friends when we displayed on the Ivor Mairants stand at the Acoustic Guitar Show at Olympia, we'd just sent up these guitars for them,

Here's Mak, Andy and myself in front of the stand.

Later in the month we exhibited the guitars at the Bristol Guitar Show, with the help of Melissa, Robbie and Dave Smith along with a few of their guitars and ukes we were able to summon up a healthy display of just over twenty instruments!
Me and Andy again, in front of the stand before the show kicked off,

Dave King, Pete Beer, Robbie and Andy talking guitars and motorbikes,

Stuart Ryan enjoying the Little Silver we've just made,

Jim Moray turned up and seemed quite struck with Robbie's yew baritone!

Another shot of the guitars on offer! If anyone likes the look of anything just get in touch,
you're welcome to come down and try them.

I'll lump all this month's repairs together as there are quite a lot of them -
An unknown, rather well made European folk guitar, a Hofner Congress for a neck reset,
a refret on a very nice Gilchrist mandolin,
a horrible Martin composite thing that had fallen apart, an impressive Tokai Cat's Eyes
and somebody's pride and joy this 'snakeskin' Jackson!

Duncan, from the local college, came in earlier in the year to discuss his plans for a small travel guitar he was making for his course work, he'd thought it out well and did a really professional job, he's just sent us this picture of the finished instrument.

What do you need to while away the time on a romantic beach resort with your new wife on your honeymoon - well Richard thought it was his little Bovey.....hmmm....

Look out for some new YouTube videos we have lined up for next month's news!

August 2011

We'll start the August News with Nick in sunny Yorkshire playing his new baritone Tavy in front of his Buddleia,

Here's the European Spruce top.

Next up we have Jake with his fan fretted Tavy, the first we've made so it was an interesting challenge for us!

A nice veneer of burl walnut for the head veneer

And the rosette along with a small inlay on the twelfth.

We sorted out a bent neck and some other issues on this 1935 National Electro Spanish
for Bob,

Looks like Bob's taken that prize for the fanciest chord on the site from Laurie!

TV's Taw was back in for some more repair work to the finish and a re-fret,

Let this picture be a warning to anyone with a belt buckle!

We always ask Brook owners to send in their photos and singer/songwriter Paul Rogers
sent us these taken at a garden party in Wiltshire -

Here's Jacqui Sharp also playing Paul's Tamar

This is a shot of the display earlier in the month before we sent the latest
batch of guitars out to Ivor Mairants and TAMCO.

We'll leave you with two more YouTube videos from Rob

Si Beg Si Mor and Sleeping Tune

July 2011

First off the mark for July is Rob Jessep's Tavy baritone.
Rob went for a native woods theme and apart from the European spruce top,
the Schertler tuners and the Elixir strings all the other materials are sourced from the UK,

The yew back and sides came from North Devon, we cut and dried these ourselves,
the neck's a laminate of sycamore, cherry and walnut,

The fingerboard and bridge were ancient bog oak,

As was the head veneer and the truss rod cover, the final product is a
rather beautiful guitar built for a low C tuning.

Next up is a renovation of a 1950 National Californian for Bob.
Bob's always wanted one of the very rare Memphis Minnie models so he asked us to
refurbish his Californian in the style of the older guitar,

We double bound the body and sunburst it, added a couple of Pete Biltoft's 'Vintage Vibe' Charlie Christian style pickups, an authentic pickguard and tone controls,

Bound the headstock and added the logo for a stunning recreation of that
famous Memphis Minnie guitar.

Mark here sourced the wood for the back and sides of his new Tamar,

It's a rather spectacular set of bocote, Mark went for a cutaway and a soundport,

A European spruce top with a walnut burl rosette

And a bocote veneer on the back of the headstock with gold 510's.

A couple of pictures now from across the pond - Here's James with his new Taw in his garden over in Michigan,

And one of Tom with his Creedy at Taughannock Falls,
the highest waterfall east of the Mississippi, Trumansburg, NY.
It's good to see the Brooks finding their way around the world!

To end the July news here are three of the latest YouTube clips:

Here's a video of Rob getting to grips
with his new Tavy baritone! Jock O'Hazeldean

And two tunes from Chris Whitfield on his new Lyn
The Orphan and Dr MacPhail's Reel

If you are holidaying down in the Westcountry this summer and would like
to visit the workshop just get in touch.

June 2011

Firstly this month we'd like to show you a rather special Taw which has just been
sent over to James in Michigan, lots of custom features on this one -
Here's a close up of the cedar top with the unusual rosette and the coral position markers,

The back is made up of a bookmatched centre section of Tasmanian blackwood surrounded by Vietnamese rosewood for the outer wings and the sides,

Finally a photo of the headstock with a dragon inlay, a Tasmanian blackwood truss rod cover and Gotoh 510's with ebony buttons.

Gary, who couldn't make it down to the workshop to collect the Clyst
we featured last month, sent us this photo. He wrote to us:
"It's my dream guitar & has exceeded all my expectations"

Richard, from Bristol, picked up his walnut Tamar

This shows the fine European spruce top he picked out earlier in the year

And some highly flamed walnut for the back and sides.

We've just sent two more guitars, a Lyn and a Taw, up to 'Celtic Chords' in Stonehaven,

Pete sent us these shots, if anyone would like to try the guitars out in the intimate surroundings of this well stocked shop please pay them a visit!

Chris ordered this Kit last year, we're always happy to see photos with the guitars with unusual backdrops and Chris has chosen to show off his Kit
in front of the rather spectacular Brighton Pavilions.

Michael, who set up our website, was on a photo and video shoot on Primrose Hill with Louise Loft, see a short video here

Mike, who picked up his Okement last month, has wasted no time getting
his first clip using it on Youtube - Carolan's Cottage

Jordan Humber has recorded a fine video to show the wide range of possibilities and differences between his Torridge and his Teign, see it here.

We'd be delighted to hear of any other videos featuring our guitars.

May 2011

We'll start this month with Dave who picked up his new 12 fret Tamar. Dave supplied the cocobolo and Adirondack spruce for his sixth Brook!

Here's the cocobolo three-piece back.

With the long scale, the 12 fret body and this great quality Adirondack top this guitar sounded stunning from the moment we strung it up.

This beautiful Clyst had a flamed mahogany top, back and sides,
it went up to Gary in the West Midlands,

The headstock had squared off slots to match Gary's other Brook.

Mike's another collector of Brooks and Mansons,
this cutaway Okement though is the first he's custom ordered.

It's in sitka spruce with local cherry back and sides and an oval soundport.
Mike has a great site with plenty of O'Carolan tabs amongst other things of interest
Doc's Workshop

I came in one weekend this month to show Corinne and Thierry our guitars,
Thierry couldn't resist this Tasmanian blackwoodTamar
and they took it back to London with them!

Steve from Intersound picked up this pretty little mahogany Clyst for the shop.

We made this Ian Anderson model for Rich in Baltimore last year,
he just emailed to tell us how well he's getting on with it and sent us this picture.



Lastly - a quick shot of three of the many repairs we've been working on recently.

Let's see what our customers bring in for us next month!

April 2011

This should be an April fool item but it isn't -

Gentlemen, do you really need this latest Gucci Messenger bag which will probably be out of fashion in six month's time?

Or do you need this handmade Brook Guitar for considerably less which will last you a lifetime?

Hopefully no competition!

Several people this month didn't go for the Gucci option - Gavin popped over for his new Taw

With this nice set of Kew walnut on the back and sides.

We made this 12 fret Taw with a longer scale for Laurie, he bought this fine sinker redwood top for us to use. The guitar was fairly heavily customised with our alternative bridge style,

A side sound-port in this stunning set of Rio,

And a plain headstock with Shertler tuners along with a black bone nut and saddle.

Here's Laurie going for the 'Fanciest Chord on the Site' award

Here's Tulley in Montana with the left-handed Ash we've recently sent out to him. He wrote -

" Hands down the easiest and most well balanced guitar I've ever owned right from the start. Very precise action. Subtle ... nuanced ... detailed ... perfect!"

Tulley wanted a photo of the four of us with the Ash before we sent it to the States

We didn't mean to look quite so surly, come on lads - It's Spring!

March 2011

One of the first visitors this month was luthier John Buckam from Australia, he was in the area and dropped in to have a chat and show us a couple of his guitars.

We've had a couple of unusual commissions recently, the first was for Andy Lale - it's an eight string nylon strung instrument on a cutaway Taw body,

We used the new Schertler tuners on the headstock,

The back was reclaimed Rio rosewood,

Andy tuned the eighth string way down to an A; the guitar also had individual brass midi pickups.

Kevin Aram is probably the UK's most highly regarded classical guitar maker, he's made guitars for Julian Bream, Carlos Bonell and many other high profile players. He asked us to build him this Torridge,

The inlay work is loosely based on the 1930's Regal 'La Domino'. We made up a full set of bone dominos and inlaid the majority in the rosette,

The remainder were used as the appropriate position markers, the numbers adding up to the fret positions!

Arlen bought his Taw in for a set-up; this was the one using largely home grown timbers including the Kew walnut and the bog oak for the fingerboard, bridge and head veneer.

Graham was down from Bristol for this 015 Torridge, his third Brook, also with Kew walnut back and sides. Graham's also an amateur luthier himself, adding to our substantial list of makers who've been impressed enough with our instruments to order one!

Rob Jessep has become a regular in the News recently; he came down with Catherine to pick out this yew for a baritone Tavy.

Here's Rob's latest video The Road to Easterbrook

And the tab here for anyone who might like a crack at it!

February 2011

Hopefully these snowdrops in the orchard herald the first days of Spring!

It's still looking a little bleak outside but it didn't deter our customers:

Ken came down for his new Tamar,

His wife designed this tree which Jack inlaid in the headstock,

Here's the claro walnut back.

Andy popped over from South Devon for his second Brook - a shallow body baritone Tavy in cherry and European spruce.

And Richard, who's on his third Brook, came up from St Ives, for his latest - a beautiful understated Lyn,

Richard wanted a custom neck and fingerboard and visited when I carved the neck to see he got what he wanted! I'm roughing out the neck on the band-saw in this shot,

And in the early stages of shaping the neck here, thanks for the photos Richard!

And thanks to the Acoustic magazine for including us in their '50 Favourite Guitars' feature,

We were in the '20 Dream Guitars' section with a fine write-up, we would like to point out though that we've been here since 1993 now rather than 2001!

We'll finish up for February with a couple of shots of the rack with the guitars that have just come out of the spray-shop,

If you're interested in seeing quite a few of these again keep an eye out for next month's news!

Here's Rob Jessop's latest composition inspired by his Tamar
Love Me For What I Am

January 2011

Firstly we'd like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and we'll start with a snapshot of the workshop when we eventually got back after the snow.

Adrian made the short trip from Exeter for this Creedy we had in stock.

Freddie made the longer trek up from Ringwood to pick up these three guitars for Oasis.

Just after Christmas we sent this Ian Anderson model out to Paul in Canada, he's sent us a snowy recreation of the Steven Stills album cover taken in his garden!

Richard's an old friend of ours, here he is in an unusually coy pose with his new Clyst!

He wanted a similar cat on the fingerboard to the one we'd previously inlaid on his Lyn.

Here's a shot of the figured mahogany sides

And one of the back.

Now - a sad goodbye to Jake from the Honeytones (in the middle here). Everyone was shocked to hear the news of his sudden death. Jake and his deep baritone will be sadly missed and irreplaceable in the band.

Rob bought a cherry Tamar from Oasis and came down in November for us to fit a K&K for him. Here's a YouTube video of him playing his own composition.
Tashulee


News 2010

News Archive 2010

To scroll use the right scroll bar

December 2010

First item for the last month of 2010 - Sam came down from London for his left-handed Tamar,

Here's the Rio back.

Tony here is still aiming to own more Brooks than any of our other customers; he couldn't resist this Little Silver we had in stock!

We finished this left handed Ash model for Tulley in the States - he's taking delivery in the Spring,

Here's some more of our local English cherry,

And a shot of the dragon inlay.

This rosewood Teign went off to Guitar Classics in Battersea.

Another month, another Les Paul with a broken headstock!

Chris came down from Swindon because he'd heard we regularly carry out this common repair,

He wrote -

"Hi Andy & Simon,The Gibson Les Paul you carried out the excellent repair on had it's first outing since the headstock break this weekend with my band 'The Lucky Generals'. It played like a dream. People who have viewed the job are blown away by the result. Thanks again, Chris"

I was going to start up this month's news with a picture of the frosty orchard but that has been rather superseded by the recent snowfall. Andy, always up for the challenge, just managed to get out here on his trials bike.

Here are some great shots of the trip and the workshop taken by Andy's daughter Yasmin, his sidecar passenger, first of all a shot of the brook,

followed by our lane

one of the workshop

And one of the orchard, it's funny to think there were still apples on these trees last month!

We normally all get in to the workshop whatever the weather but decided for once we just couldn't make it.

To end 2010 we'd like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and leave you with this seasonal clip of Pete Berryman playing his Tamar.

Silent Night

November 2010

Rob came down from Southampton so we could fit a K&K pickup in this cherry Tamar he'd just bought from Oasis Music

Here's Bob in front of his Honeytones pickup showing off his new Tavy,

Bob's had a few guitars from us before, this time he was after a gothic theme with a pentagram with a tiny skull inside on the pick-guard,

Jack cut out and inlaid this gargoyle for the headstock

And this small dragon for the heel cap,

We ought to let you see this fine set of cocobolo on the back, in the background you can see Bob's beautiful old Silvertone electric.

Michael came down for his Taw, we tried to keep a home grown theme here -

We used the Kew walnut again,

Here's the bog oak fingerboard and headstock veneer

And here's the bog oak bridge, for any creationists out there - yes it is 7,000 years old!

Our old mate Roger popped down for his latest guitar - a short scale 12 string Little Silver,

We used figured walnut for the back and some of our old stock of redwood that's been stored for the last fifty years for the top,

We were able to keep the headstock fairly small by designing it around this set of Golden Age tuners.

Repairs this month included a re-top on this old Rob Armstrong guitar,

 

Chris from Spin 2 has owned this from new and was really pleased we were able to bring it back to life!

If you've any old instruments out there that you think might benefit from some attention feel free to give us a call.

October 2010

We've been busy this month with custom orders and repairs. Bob here was the first customer to arrive for his Torridge

The back and sides are a really unusually grained set of old Vietnamese rosewood we found.

Graham came down from Bristol to order a Torridge to add to this Tavy and Lyn in his collection!

Mark only had to come up from Otterton for his Taw

And Robert only had a short jaunt up from Paignton for his Torridge,

Robert chose this tastefully figured set of local cherry for the back of his guitar.

David had further to come, he was down from London to pick up this Little Silver 12 string in cedar and flamed mahogany.

We also have been working on various repairs for customers and shops so here's a quick round up of some of them - Alan came down to pick up these two that needed neck resets and refinishing amongst other things,

The top one's a 1960 Hofner and the lower one a bit of a mixture that Alan put together himself out of vintage parts.

Then we had this Tamar in for repair, it had been knocked off a guitar stand and ended up with a split along one of the sides, we managed to glue it back together and you can't see the damage at all now to the customer's relief!

Then a double bass came in with a broken neck

And a cello for some finishing work.

We try to tackle the jobs other people turn down so if you have an instrument that could benefit from a good set up, fretwork or general overhaul why not get in touch with us.

September 2010

We'll start the September news with Tim - he came down from Lincolnshire for his Torridge

He'd chosen this stunning English yew back and sides

And to continue the local wood theme chose this 7,000 year old bog oak fingerboard and through bridge.

Andy here came up from South Devon for this Clyst we had in stock

And also chose this local cherry and European spruce for a baritone Tavy, keep an eye out early next year for the finished guitar!

We've just finished this 12 string Tavy for John in Australia to add to his collection of three other Brooks

The back and sides are Swarzia, a great sounding South American wood.

I sold my last Taw recently so I could replace it with another Taw with the new logo, here's the new one.

Andy and I attended the Bristol Guitar Show last weekend,

We took up fourteen instruments which received a lot of attention,

Met up with some old friends and hopefully made some new ones!

Andy and I also went down to St Austell to see Pete Berryman and Wizz Jones, Pete was promoting his latest CD of Cornish tunes shown here

Jack's been busy on his latest inlay

Here he is working on a fingerboard inlay of a dragon for Tulley in the States.

Well that's all for September, the weather's getting colder now but we'll try and keep warm and busy getting the guitars out to you.

August 2010

It's August again, as well as taking the odd week off for our summer break, it's been work as usual - Freddie came down to pick up these three - a Torridge, Taw and a Tamar for Oasis in Ringwood, the Taw was sold within a few days of being on display!

John came over from Sidmouth for his fifth Brook! This time a cherry Torridge.

Beth, from Portugal, popped in with her Lyn on her way to Blues Week in Northampton.

We completed a batch of guitars for the Cheltenham Guitar Show which unfortunately was cancelled, here's a picture of the five of us with them

The guitars will be coming along with us to the Bristol Guitar Show next month if they're still around. Amongst them is this Little Silver short scale, it's built to fit a tenor guitar case

Check out the beautiful Tasmanian blackwood back.

We thought you might like to see some pictures of a left handed Ash we're making for Tulley in the States, here are the soundboard, back and sides before we put them together

And the cherry back and neck

Along with early stages of the neck carving.

Here's a meeting of old and new tradition - John Lambert is the developer of the very beautiful Eigenharp, one of the most unusual and impressive instruments you're ever likely to see, it's good to know John still really appreciates the Clyst we built for him some years ago!

July 2010

We'll start off this month by introducing you to our new logo. We'd like to thank Justin, a Brook owner, who showed great patience working with us coming up with the final design!

First out with the new logo was this Lyn, David Rose and his daughter Bryony came down to pick up the guitar which was a birthday present from his wife Helen.

Here's a close up of the inlay, the rose stem incorporates David and Bryony's initials,

And a shot of the red gum back.

The second with the new logo was this little Kit travel guitar for Chris from South Devon,

His brother supplied the stunning highly figured Pomelle for the back and sides.

Ralf, from Bremen in Germany, just received delivery of this unusual 13 fret Taw,

We chose this lovely figured walnut back and sides

And Ralf asked for this through bridge rather than our standard pin bridge design.

Talking of which - Martin from Staffordshire also asked for another of our alternate bridge shapes, this was one we first used last year.

We took the opportunity to photograph Martin's cherry and walnut Tamar with an older one we'd been working on with the woods laid out in reverse, we nickname these our 'fruit & nut' guitars

Simon and Becky came down from Sheffield for Simon's cutaway Taw

And Frank from Worcester for his 12 fret Torridge.

Well that's it for July; we're looking forward to August as the weather is so good and taking a week off for our summer holidays!

June 2010

I thought we'd start off this month with a couple of shots of the workshop and surrounding countryside. We came in early one morning last week to the first real signs of summer

The apple trees in the orchard are in blossom and in this picture you can see the ancient Nymph Woods in the background.

Back to the guitars now -

Iain came down from Yorkshire for this five year old Taw that was up for sale

He helped us out by taking a Lyn up to Rob who lived nearby.

Adrian didn't have as far to travel, he came down from North Devon and bought this Tavy we had in stock

It was the one with the stunning myrtle back.

This beautiful sunburst Taw is ready for delivery to Jon in Buckinghamshire

Pete made the long journey down from Stonehaven to pick up this Tamar, Torridge and a Lyn he'd ordered for his shop - Celtic Chords. It's our first outlet in Scotland and we look forward to working with him in the future

We bought a large, new bandsaw to allow us to resaw more of our own woods on site

Here are Andy, Kevin and myself trying it out on some figured mahogany.

Repairs this month included these two lovely old Hofners

Lastly - We found this video of Robb Johnson playing the Tamar we made for him a couple of years ago, check it out here

 

May 2010

Robin popped down from Exeter the other day to pick up his Torridge

The back was from a walnut tree planted in Kew Gardens in the late 1800's, apparently by Queen Victoria!

The neck and tuner buttons are also walnut and the headstock veneer is this beautiful walnut burl.

Another guitar we finished this month using mainly UK woods was this Taw for Arlen up in Falkirk, again we used walnut for the neck, back and sides and sycamore for the binding.

We used English bog oak as a substitute for ebony for the fingerboard, bridge and head veneer, for the top we had to widen our field a little and use European spruce. Our native spruce is too fast grown to give the tight grain needed for a good tone wood.

We sent this rosewood, short scale, nylon strung, cutaway Cary up to Dave in Coventry, he was really pleased with the result.

This rosewood 12 fret Torridge went up to David in Yorkshire

And this rosewood Taw went up to Mark in the Midlands

One of my all time favourite American songwriters Michael Hurley has a new CD out - 'Ida Con Snock' Michael used the little Bovey we made for him throughout the album

If you like your Americana a little off centre I'd suggest you give it a listen

Michael recorded his first album for the famous Folkways label in 1964, this latest one, his 21st, was recorded at Levon Helm's studio in Woodstock and he revisits some of his old material as well giving us some great versions of newer songs.

Well that's all folks, keep an eye out here for the latest Brook news

April 2010

As you've probably heard the EU Commission are bringing in their new statute in two years time requiring all new stringed musical instruments built within the EU to have a regulatory decimal system of ten frets to the octave rather than the previous standard of twelve.

Rather than wait until the forthcoming law comes into effect, over the last six months we've been working on this first prototype based on our standard Clyst model.

It does sound a little different at first - but I'm sure we'll all get used to it after a while.

Magnus came down from Winchester for his new Torridge

John, from Western Australia, collected the Okement and Cherry he'd ordered and decided he had to have the black Cary we'd made for stock last year

Here's the maple back of the Okement

And the ziricote on the Cherry

Along with a shot to show the size difference

Rebecka's a local singer songwriter, she ordered this nylon strung Lyn

We strutted this classical fairly traditionally

Here's a close up of the top

And the back.

Martin's had several guitars of ours before, this time he was down to pick up his Little Silver tenor guitar

He'd asked us to choose the specs this time so we picked out some spectacular maple for the back and the neck

Here's a shot of the top

Our friend Bob just bought a lovely Duesenberg to use with the Honeytones, he wanted to personalise it so we had a chrome transfer made up in the style of the overall design of the guitar

Looks in keeping doesn't it!

I know we mentioned these repairs last month but we thought you might like to see the Framus before we got it back together

And here's Alan from The Foundations picking up his late fifties Les Paul Junior , we'd had to do quite an extensive repair to an old injury!

OK - I promise - here's last of TV playing his guitar now it's back together.

By the way, in case you're in any doubt - yes the first item was an April fool, a number of people fell for it, I could name names but you know who you are!!

March 2010

We thought we'd concentrate this month on getting some of the repairs out of the door. This month's news will hopefully give you an idea of some of the range of work we tackle as well as making our Brooks!

First of all this vintage Gretsch Chet Atkins model arrived for a re-fret and some TLC.

As did this old battered Framus

Then we had a couple of Strats in, one for a re-fret

And the other for a surface repair

Shortly followed by two neck repairs, one on a Faith

The other a '70's Yamaha.

Then we had to patch up some lacquer damage on our friend's lovely old Gretsch bass drum

I was delighted when this beautiful little Radiotone uke came in for some repair work, you don't see these very often and it was a pleasure to get a chance to play it for a while!

This rare Les Paul Junior was a fairly major job with a badly damaged top from a previous 'repair' , we had get it back as close to its original specifications as possible

We also of course continued with our normal work, we finished two new guitars to add to our Shop page, Steve came down from Intersound for his latest Taw

And TV was back on stage the day after he got his guitar back!

Keep an eye out next month - we've some interesting new Brooks to show you -

Feb 2010

First of all I'd like to mention that Michael who normally updates our website is off for a couple of months travelling the globe so we'll wish him good luck and keep our fingers crossed as we attempt this technical stuff ourselves!

We sent this lovely little cherry Clyst up to John in Wales.

David came down for his second Brook, this time a claro walnut and cedar Taw

He brought along his Brook themed boots he'd had made to show us!

Jeff picked up a used Taw we'd built in 1998 and bought it to us to fit a K&K pickup.

We didn't think we were going to see TV Smith's guitar back in the workshop so soon but a sound engineer in Germany knocked it over and did some fairly drastic damage!

The heel broke off completely, pulling off the fingerboard extension along with bits of the front

TV got it straight down to us and had to take his Tele off to Finland for a few gigs instead of his trusty Taw, while we had four working days to get it back together

We glued and clamped the neck back together and gradually got all those broken bits back in the right places

And successfully managed to get the neck back on in the correct position

A fresh set of strings on and a set up and it was ready to go back up to TV in time for an acoustic gig in London the following day.

 

Jan 2010

Just before Christmas Trudi from North Devon picked up her short scale Clyst



She’d picked out this nice flamed local cherry for the back and sides...



...And asked Jack to make up this fingerboard inlay for her in a dark pearl



Here’s a close up of the hare on the 12th fret



Next comes our first Little Silver twelve string for Chris in South Devon

Chris has a couple of our guitars and wrote us and said “The thing about your guitars is that they are in every detail what I would create if I could”

Sounds like he liked it then...



Interesting grain on this set of cherry!



Here’s Henry with his three Brooks - A Lyn a Bovey and a Taw

He was down our way on holiday so he popped over to see us so we could cast an eye over them



Here’s Stan with the second of his Brooks, this time a custom cutaway
Taw



This odd shot shows the cedar top, twelve frets to the body and a fancy diamond inlay on the fingerboard...



...A pic of the Rio back



Jeff was our first customer after the Christmas break and came up from Cornwall to collect his cutaway rosewood Taw

Jeff also has a Tavy at home



Here’s a seasonal photo of our workshop taken earlier this week



Now most people who know how far off the beaten track we are may be wondering how we got in through the snow so we’re proud to present the hero of the month...

Andy’s motorbike and sidecar



He made up some makeshift chains with some rope and ferried us all up and down the hills to the nearest village



Here are Andy, Kevin and Jack setting off back home after work



And this is the four of us arriving again the following morning



Lastly, a couple of pictures Andy’s daughter Xanthia took, the first shows the brook we took our name from…



And this shows the entrance to the Easterbrook track after its first powdering of snow



All the best for 2010 from the team at Brook Guitars



News 2009

News Archive 2009

To scroll use the right scroll bar

December 2009

Here’s Andrew with his second rather special
Taw



Jack inlaid this tiger for him in the headstock




Nice flame in this Tasmanian blackwood!




And some fifty year old sequoia for the top




Pete here has been making guitars himself for a while and sent down the woods for this Tamar we made for him




The back is a South American rosewood, very similar to Rio




Pete asked for this light sunburst




Along with this zebrano head veneer




We attended the Intersound Guitar Show: here’s Andy in front of

our stand



While we were up there we delivered Vo’s guitar. We first saw him a couple of years ago gigging with Rick Saunders and John Ethridge. We didn’t get a decent picture of him at the show so he was kind enough to send this




Along with one showing off the back...




Phil came down from Stroud for his Taw in Mediterranean walnut and sitka




We found another You Tube clip you may like – it’s Jordan Humber playing ‘Berkely Springs’ on his Taw https://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=GB&hl=en-GB&v=0zVnrz7URLA&fmt=18




Lastly – the final picture this year from our workshop. We’d like to wish you the finest Season’s Greetings and remember the moral...


'He who dies with the most guitars wins!'




Nov 2009

Firstly this month Ben came up from Plymouth for this
Torridge we had in stock



Norman, also from Plymouth, came up for this bouzouki guitar he ordered to go with his Sobell guitar



Here’s a close up of the European spruce top.



The latest
Cherry travel guitar went up to Phil in Scotland,



Phil goes abroad regularly climbing and was after a small guitar to take with him,



Here’s a shot of the beautiful ziricote back.



Another first for us – a twelve fret
Tavy for Vo Fletcher



How about this for a Rio back!



It’s just been pointed out to us that the excellent David Kilpatrick has a couple of You Tube clips using his
Bovey, check this out
Click Here



We also found this clip of Cams with his
Bovey playing Blackwaterside
Click Here



Iban and Sergio came over from The Basque Country with three guitars for us to set up, Iban’s watching while Simon works on the frets of his Greven



Simon, Sergio and Iban pose with the Greven, Gibson and Martin



And here’s Iban with his 1920’s Gibson.



TV Smith’s
Taw came in again for some T.L.C. Every so often we fill the damage he does with his pick to keep it going another year or so



This time we added a larger pickguard! TV will be using it for thirty gigs over Europe in the two months before Christmas!



And that should hopefully prop it up for a while...
until the next time...




Oct 2009



It’s again been a month when we’ve had a lot of interest in our
Little Silver model, first of all these two went off to their new owners


This inlay was for David in Dallas, Texas. We also inlaid bones of black oyster shell in the fingerboard as position markers!



This back, for our friend John, was another from our locally sourced walnut



The third Little Silver this month went off to Graham in Alderney, here’s the sequoia top with a pyramid bridge…



And here’s a picture of the beautiful quilted four piece maple back…



With a slotted headstock and Waverly tuners



Next is a new model for Daniel from Sweden, he sent us a rough drawing of what he was after so we came up with this, we’ve named it after a river at the end of his garden – the Tidan



He wanted a simple bridge



The small extra soundhole in the ribs



And this inlay of Tranors on the back of the headstock



To finish up this month we’d like to introduce Paolo, he dropped in to the workshop for a set up on his Lyn



This must be the most widely travelled guitar we’ve made, Paolo works for a major aid agency and he has taken his guitar to ...

Angola,
Kenya,
Zimbabwe,
Mozambique,
Malawi,
Botswana,
South Africa,
Iraq, Kurdistan,
Jordan,
Lebanon,
Beirut,
Damascus,
Syria,
Sri Lanka,
Darfur,
Hong Kong,
Singapore
and…..Milton Keynes!



Sept 2009



Here’s Steve Yates with his new cutaway
Taw

Steve’s a phenomenal guitarist and composer and a past winner of the ‘Guitarist of the Year’ competition. Check out some of his videos on his You Tube site https://www.youtube.com/user/stephenyatesacoustic


Steve & Jude were down for the latest batch of guitars for Intersound


Paula couldn’t make it down to pick up her short scale Creedy so we had to ship it off to her



Here’s a close up of the top



And another of the fine cocobolo back



Roger came down again for us to fit a pick guard on the Lyn we made for him recently


Here’s another of our regular repair jobs, almost every month we have a fresh Gibson Les Paul in with a broken headstock, here’s the before shot...



... And the successful repair


It was great to see Michael Chapman in concert last weekend at a local venue; he was a real influence on my playing in the early ‘70’s



Thanks to our friend Johnny for sending this shot of Michael playing his Brook after another recent gig



Aug 2009



Ryan bought his gum
Taw from Project Music recently and brought it over to us to fit a pickup. Ryan’s in our favourite unsigned band ‘Bert Miller and The Animal Folk’. Check out their My Space site https://www.myspace.com/animalfolkmusic



Here are Les and Martin in my kitchen playing their latest two instruments, Les ordered a Little Silver maple tenor and Martin a Little Silver koa six string



Steve came to pick up his Rio Taw



Here’s a shot of the top with its Rio purfling and binding



And another of Jack’s inlay work from Steve’s design



Craig couldn’t get down to pick up his gum Torridge because of an ankle injury so we had to send it off to him. He sent us this photo of himself and his son Freddie. They both look happy with the guitar!



It was good to see a couple of our customers again this month – Keith came down for a pickup for his Ash



And Andrew came down for a set up on his Tamar



Here’s our latest stock guitar, our nylon strung model – the Carey



Here’s a shot of the chamfers and the oval sound-port



Finally – it’d be silly not to take a picture of the inside through the sound-port so here it is!



Now that's not something you see every day!

Enjoy!




July 2009



Firstly this month we have Phil Bird, Phil’s a wonderful musician and an old friend of ours, he has three of our guitars and was over from Cyprus visiting friends and gigging



Another old friend of ours, Roger from South Wales picked up his fourth Brook



This time he went for a spectacular sunburst Lyn



Here’s a shot of the Waverly tuners with snakewood buttons



Mike came up from Cornwall for his 12 fret rosewood Taw



Phil from South Devon for his cherry Taw with a slotted headstock



And Paul came down from Cambridge for his cherry Taw



We were pleased to find this picture of the late great Eric Roche trying out one of our Creedys on the TAMCO website



If any one is interested in a cutaway rosewood Taw this is our latest for sale directly from the workshop



If it looks like the guitar for you call us on
Tel  +44 (0)1647 24139




June 2009



If by any chance you saw
‘Acoustic’ this month with Ian Anderson on the cover, there were half a dozen photos of Ian with his favourite guitar. As there was no mention of who made it we thought we’d like to point out ...

We did!


Jay here has a recording studio in London, he ordered a red gum Tamar


He also preferred this wider version of our standard headstock


George ordered up a 12 fret Taw


Here’s a shot of the laminated neck and Rio back


And another of the Sitka top with Rio purfling and binding


This Tamar tucked up securely in a burgundy Calton case went off to David in Middlesbrough


Here’s a close up of the rippled walnut


And one of the ‘Tamar’ inlay


Lastly – we’re always pleased when our customers send us slightly more unusual photos, here’s one Bob sent us of himself with his Creedy along with Stephanie, his wife, and Dave on mandola. Not sure if the shades are in keeping with the Tudor theme!



If you have any shots of you and your Brook in unusual circumstances please send them in to us. We'd love to see them and they might even end up here on the news page



May 2009



Here are Becky and Gary in North Wales with the latest two new additions to accompany Gary’s
Taw

They ordered a Holly uke and a Little Silver tenor guitar


The inlay is a Welsh daffodil entwined with an English rose!


Red Gum guitars were the order of the month with these three all strung up and ready to go


Here’s another close up showing the grain


We just sent out this red gum Tamar 015 to Roel in Belgium, he was really pleased with the result and sent us this picture


Finally here’s Glen with an old Hofner that belonged to his father, we’ve just done some renovation work on it and hopefully it’ll keep playing well for another generation!


Also...

...we're in this month's
'Acoustic' Magazine

Read all about it here

Part 1

Part 2


For any of our customers reading this who've been down here to see us - don't worry - we haven't moved, we're still in the barn (not the converted bungalow the columnist mentioned)!



April 2009


We'll kick off this month with Wendy and Colin who came down from Intersound for their latest three Brooks for the shop.


And Grant came down last month for his cherry Torridge


Mark here wanted us to replicate some of the nicer features of the earlier Martins on his new Clyst...


…. Such as the torch inlay on the headstock and snowflake inlay on the fingerboard


….And the abalone top border and fingerboard surround


Here’s a shot of the Rio back


Another nod to the classic American guitar here with a new option for the Teign model. This one’s a short scale dreadnought based on the Gibson J45


Here’s a picture of Jim with the Teign and Simon with Jim’s lacewood uke


..And a shot of Andy and Jim outside the workshop


This is the Rio back of the new Teign


Finally – Justin Starck bought his Taw into us for repair and a set-up after an accident


Here’s Justin with the Taw when he was playing at the 12 Bar Club recently


If you have any pics of you and your Brook send them in to us and they could find their way onto this page



March 2009


We braved the snow earlier in the month to get to the workshop to work on the latest batch of instruments


This month we've been occupied with our smaller instruments so here goes with March's News which is alternatively titled ...

'Honey, I shrunk the Guitars...!'

Here’s our old friend Colin, aka 'Uke Stanza', with his latest pair – a Holly tenor uke and a Holly guitar


This close up of the two shows off the beautiful koa


Julian in Gloucester is playing his new maple and cedar Bovey


Here’s a close up of the cowboy inlay expertly cut out by Jack again


This slotted headstock Bovey went up to Alan in London


And this rosewood one went out to Vasilis in Greece


Here’s another new model, another small one, we’ve called the Cherry, this sunburst one is going to Julian in Hertforshire


We’ll sign off this month with the latest picture of our ever-expanding
‘uke corner'!



We’ll probably be back up to full scale next month!




February 2009


This month a couple of guitars we recently finished had to travel a few miles to get to their new owners: This
Tamar went up to join Jeremy in Edinburgh with his other Brooks


This Taw has even further to go – it’s off to join Jim in California, hopefully we’ll have pictures with their new owners shortly!


Paul here heard that we were making a Taw for stock and came down and bought it as soon as it was strung up!


It’s been a month for seeing old friends returning for another guitar. Richard here is showing off three of his Brooks and sorting out the specs for a new 12 string


Roger here is showing off his 12 string, one of the first we built and finalising the specs of his new Lyn


John bought the exhibition guitar to add to his collection and ordered up one of our new Little Silver models


Roger picked up his third Brook, a beautiful oil finished, sequoia topped Taw


Here’s a shot of the cocobolo back


And finally – a quick snap for all you uke lovers out there – here’s a collection in the corner of the workshop of some of our own ukes, old and new!



Sometimes you just don't know where to start!



January 2009

Happy New Year to all, from all of us here at the workshop. We came back to a cold start, here’s a picture of the frozen ford at the bottom of our lane


Pete here picked up his left handed, 12 string Dart just before Christmas. He braved the cold to show us the inspiration for the fingerboard inlay


Here’s a close up of the latest of Jack’s fine handiwork!


This is Doug McCarthey’s latest Brook, his fifth! – a baritone Tavy this time!


We’ve all been working in our spare time on our own projects and trying to finish them before the end of the year. Kev made this walnut Torridge and Andy made a cherry Taw


Melissa and I made a resonator uke each


We actually strung them up at 8 o’clock on New Years Eve, here’s a picture of the backs of them

So a very Happy New Year from us!