A few years ago I built a prototype SBB which included a number of new construction methods. This instrument became the forerunner of the Black Edition range of instruments which ultimately became the basis for the specification of the instruments I’m currently building. I’m always learning and always looking at ways to improve and develop the instruments.

After I finished the prototype, I sent it over to John Ryan in Dublin for testing and evaluating. Although I’ve been building bouzoukis for many years, I’m no great shakes as a player. John and I have worked together for many years and I really value his opinion – he’s a great player and a real gent.

Well, I was hoping to get the instrument back to continue its development but never saw it again!! John bought it from me and shortly after ordered a Black Edition LBB. The full story of the development of the prototype can be read here. And you can read about the building of John’s Black Edition LBB here.

John decided to move the prototype on shortly after receiving the new LBB and called me to say that Daoirí Farrell had tried it, fallen in love with it and bought it. He’s had it a year or two now and by all accounts he’s absolutely delighted with it. Here’s what Daoirí has to say about the instrument:

You have built quite possibly the best bouzouki that I’ve ever had strapped on to me and I don’t know what Divine power caused the earth to move such that it came to land in my hands. It is just simply the nicest instrument I have ever played, Andy. I really mean that.”

Daoirí plays his Tobin SBB