When you meet Ted Åstrand you immediately notice that he is calm, centered, and kind. I can imagine him working in total peace and serenity in his shop. One glance at his guitars and you can see how pristine and precise they are, one note and you can tell how important the work is to him. For me it’s real simple: when I play Ted’s instruments I want to write music. They inspire me to create. That’s the most important attribute of any instrument in my mind.
Paul Heumiller, Dream Guitars, North Carolina, USA
After four hours of starring at the case and letting it acclimate I finally opened it up. What can I say? The most beautiful guitar I have ever seen. You have a true gift for turning wood into a priceless piece of art. Every part is perfectly married together. So balanced aesthetically. And then on to the most important parts of a guitar, sound and playability. The neck fits perfectly into my hand, thank you for understanding my need for a neck that fits my small hands. Your advise was perfect. The playability is smooth and very comfortable. The setup is just right. The first thing I normally do when I get a new guitar is take it to my good friend and have him set the action, this time I’ll take it to him and show him how a luthier sets up a guitar that plays properly when it’s built! The sound is pure. Completely balanced in the highs, mids and lower registers. Intonation is true from the first fret to the last. You have built the perfect guitar for me and I am very grateful.
David Flanagan, Oklahoma, USA
When I first picked up my new Åstrand from the case I was amazed by the craftsmanship Ted puts in his work. Every line and every little element is perfectly executed. The oiled neck is so smooth, never have I played a guitar with such a perfect setup, it almost plays itself. It sounds big but not boisterous, very even and the overtones are so sweet. Impeccable balance with a rich sustain.
Cim Frode, Sweden
I’m glad to have met Ted and started this relationship; his craftsmanship is flawless, his voicing rich and balanced. This guitar showcases all of the characteristics of the modern fingerstyle guitar which make contemporary lutherie so exciting, from its aesthetic to the instant responsiveness and depth of tone. Thanks Ted!
Paul Heumiller, Dream Guitars, North Carolina, USA
One of the nicest guitars I’ve played at the shop. It is loud and pure with plenty of interesting overtones and clean yet round tones that really appeal to me. I also like the understated elegance of the design and the awesome inlay pattern. This will be a great addition for someone’s collection.
Al Petteway, Dream Guitars, North Carolina, USA
Swedish luthier Ted Åstrand is going to be big. Very big. You heard it hear first!
An acolyte of Jason Kostal, Ted’s work is beautifully clean with elegant lines and a powerful, sophisticated tone that is uniquely his. This first OM is a great all-rounder. It does however, excel as a fingerstyle instrument.
The North American Guitar, London, UK
We were very lucky to meet Ted and his guitars at the 2015 Woodstock Luthier Invitational this year. Ted’s skills are top notch, and his builds are flawless, responsive, and simply gorgeous. This OM is one of the finest fingerstyle guitars I’ve played this year–and trust me, I’ve played a lot of fingerstyle guitars so far in 2015.
Paul Heumiller, Dream Guitars, North Carolina, USA
The 2015 Å-OM that we had in the store (for a matter of hours) has provided us with the first glimpse at his craftsmanship–and we wish we had a lifetime, instead. The voice is perfectly weighted between the steady, well-defined low-end and the shimmering trebles by a middle register which flows like silk. This guitar inspired thoughtful, introspective arrangements each time we played it. The instant you place the Madagascar Rosewood back and sides against your leg and ribs, the lightweight construction feels delicate, until you play your first chord and a rich, colorful tone bursts out of the Bearclaw European Spruce top. At that point, if you don’t feel something tugging at your heartstrings, you might not be human.
Dream Guitars, North Carolina, USA
I am absolutely delighted with the guitar. Words cannot describe the sound that this instrument produces, it is simply superb, finding it difficult to put down at the minute!! I don’t know how Ted does it…he really is a master.
David Whigham, England
My second guitar by Ted Åstrand is a Å-OR and it’s amazing! It’s based on slope shoulder dreadnought but has been Åstrandified to match my every wish. It features a torrified Adirondack spruce top and beautiful Jaguar figured mahogany back and sides. It also features a slotted head stock, a sound port and a K&K trinity pickup. At first I thought that I would use this guitar with standard tuning but it sounded so good with BEBEBF# so I had to keep it that way. It’s amazing how Ted’s guitars just gets better and better by each one he builds! Even though all his guitars are great, this one is the best one I’ve played. It’s very beautiful and built with extreme accuracy and every detail is well thought out and executed with precision. The sound is big and round and I can just sit and play it forever.
Oskar Reuter, Sweden
The look is pure, like an architect’s tool, incredibly nice, polished, all colors are natural..even the binding…wow…. Nothing artificial…And still as you say and it is true – this is a piece of Art. I cannot find any non-symmetry or any corner with any non-matching part. The look is reduced but same time top elegant and value looking. I think even any amateur will have first impression as wow…
Handling is great. Now it come to what I was looking for. A small guitar where the right shoulder does not need to put up so high.
I always have neck-issues with my bigger guitar. This one suits perfect.
And then: the neck… this is incredibly perfect. This is the best neck I have ever played!!!!!!! Wow..Even difficult licks were running the first moment like butter. I never thought that it could be that nice and suddenly I play much better than before 😉 We say here: “if the farmer cannot swim – it is due to swim-trouser” – in this case it is somehow true – I start swimming now suddenly.
Hendrik Schulte, Germany
Thanks for making me a wonderful instrument, the sound, build quality and playability are absolutely first class. I’m so pleased with it. It has such a well balanced clear sound and already sounds nicely aged. The whole build process from start to finish was great, you kept me up-to-date with the progress at every stage sending photos as it was being made.I look forward to many years of enjoyment playing it. Thanks again for a truly wonderful instrument.
Chris Whitfield, England
Thank you Ted for building such an incredible guitar. It sounds amazing and the handcraft of the instrument is flawless! I love the tonal qualities and the balance between the strings is great. It handles my tuning (CFCFCG) excellent and both the low C and the high-G string is loud and clear. Thanks again and I’m looking forward to playing the guitar for many years to come.
Oskar Reuter, Sweden
It is a great guitar and I’d like to thank you for building me such a great instrument. It already sounds fantastic and I’m looking forward to its inevitable development over time. I’d also like to say that it has been great fun and a pleasure working through this project with you. Your ideas, particularly with regard to the aesthetic of the instrument, have proved to be outstanding. It really is a work of art as well as being a wonderful instrument to play.
Ian Brown, England
WOW, wow, wow. I don’t know what else to say about the guitar. It is absolutely fantastic and exceeded my expectations in every way possible. The shape, the craftsmanship and attention to detail are all fantastic and a tribute to your craft and skill. I think I spent about an hour just looking at it and once I did pick it up and play, the sound was phenomenal, being very responsive to even the lightest touch whilst having great attack and sustain when needed. Every chord and string played just sprang out but never ever got muddled or lost.
The African Blackwood looks fantastic and I am only scared that I scratch it.
Scott Robertson, Scotland
My Åstrand Å-OM is probably the greatest guitar ever built! Oh, and is smells heavenly too.
Chad Fengel, Illinois, USA
Best in the world is the only way to describe the Astrand Å-O parlour guitar. Such a great tone and feel, stays in tune for what seems to be months and gets great comments from the audiences.To add icing on the cake – the ordering and specification process just made the whole experience even more special. Trust me – buy one (several) – you will not regret it.
David Hunter, Oxfordshire, England
When my Åstrand OM 2015 arrived, I was not sure to get the great sounding guitar as promised. But after short time it was obviously a clear, sweet and transparent sound never heard before of a steel string. And it gets better day for day. I can do and play songs I could not do so easily before, great!! Looking at the guitar it’s a secret beauty, her attraction gets evident on the second look, especially with all details like the string knobs and the small riders on the bridge, the wheels of the tuners, the binding, the back strip a. s. o. Together with the specification list is obvious how complex, refined and accurate Ted’s work really is. It is perfect craftsmanship, and more than this: it is artificial work, that I admire very much. I would like in another life to do such work. Ted, be glad to have the chance to do such a work.
Heiner, Heidelberg, Germany
When I first met with Ted I was totally swept away by the craftsmanship, beauty and sound of his guitars. This was what I have been looking for. The choice of material, sound, minimalistic design and attention to details that really matter really appeal to my taste. I had the opportunity to participate in the whole process and discuss materials and design which was a lifetime experience and created the guitar of my dreams.
The guitar is stunningly beautiful and the craftsmanship is flawless. Even if you examine the guitar down to the smallest detail it is perfect. From the very well thought over design and attention to every detail Ted created an instrument of superb quality and looks. It simply cannot get any better. When picking up the guitar it is stunningly light and well balanced, it is really comfortable to play even for a long time. The neck and action is perfect from the beginning and the design of the heel makes it extremely playable even high up on the neck.
But the most important thing with instruments is sound and this guitar really takes your breath away. Fantastic tone, well rounded, crisp and clear and with a response that is unique, if you push the guitar it just responds back providing a fantastic dynamic sound. The separation of the strings is perfect it simply does not get muddy even when playing complex chords. As this guitar is just months old the tone and balance will probably improve with time. I am really looking forward to this journey.
Thank you Ted!
Rolf Wennergren, Sweden
“If you want to experience heaven on earth you have to search in the small things”
Dear Ted, the Åstrand Å-O is a guitar that brings a piece of heaven on earth. It is a small guitar with a magnificent sound and gorgeous wood. Small and not heavy, gentle but in the same way with a vigorous sound, always facing the musician with a unique heartiness and wonderfully impressive for listeners. There are only very few luthiers on earth who are able to build this kind of enchantment of guitar in such a wonderful way. Thank you, Ted for the wonderful Å-O. I say thank you from the bottom of my heart for this great art to bring a piece of heaven on earth.
Rolf Burket, Germany
First and foremost it sounds so good I can hardly quit once I’ve started playing it. I also love the minimalistic but tasteful design. Everything is just right, not too much and not too little. Last not least, the combination of woods, the finish, the details and quality of craftsmanship is really amazing!
Ulrich Everling, Germany
I would have no problem in stating guitars made by this luthier are on a similar level of construction as those made by €10.000+ priced American Luthiers.
One strum over the strings of this small OO size guitar will immediately convince you. These guitars are not only about insanely beautiful minimalistic design but also about making a big impression on every player, regardless if you play fingerstyle or bluegrass. Stefan Sobell guitars comes to mind but also Kevin Ryan… the absolute control over the string, the perfect balance, depth and clarity in general but more special of the low E string.
The Å-OO model is a gracefull understated beauty, perfectly mastered inside and out. Every brace inside is sanded perfectly and every cosmetic detail is simply perfectly detailed.
This is an elegant and understated beauty that is very well thought over. The 13 fret to the body construction, the heel construction, robust but so small that it allows access higher up the fretboard, The Madagascar bridge that allows the spruce/maple body to resonate in a more mellow way than ebony would have been able to. The Neck profile that is a unique C to D profile, allowing for optimum playability also higher on the neck. This guitar is all about sound. You would expect a bit harsh tone from ‘fresh’ maple but it’s nothing like that, it is rounded and matured, on first stroke you hear it’s very special. A unique sound, where a combination of power, perfect clarity without being harsh in any situation, a depth, separation and richness that is very rare..
The Fellowship Of Acoustics, Netherlands
I am the proud owner of two Åstrand guitars, one is an early Å-OM. This guitar is definitely my best sounding acoustic, it is incredibly responsive and rich in harmonics. And it is really beautiful as well. Ted’s craftsmanship is world class and his attention to detail in the guitar is mind blowing. Ted’s avantgarde designs sets him apart from other luthiers I know.
The other guitar is one of Ted’s first creations: a semi-hollow body electric guitar which is really versatile and has one of the the most comfortable necks I have ever played. This guitar can create all range of sounds from jazz to blues to rock, from Les Paul to Stratocaster. Besides it has a beautiful look and finish that catches the attention of every guitar player who has seen it.
I am really pleased with these two instruments and I would recommend Ted to every musician looking for a unique instrument with the best acoustics and aesthetics.
Alberto Méndez Rebollo. Avid collector and player of guitars, Sweden.