Product Review: Washburn HB36 Vintage Hollowbody Electric Guitar

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As seen in Guitar Girl Magazine Issue 3 – Ladies Rock the Blues – June 2018

Washburn, a well-cherished brand among musicians, has been around since the 1880s. The name Washburn has long been associated with incredibly high-quality craftsmanship and materials. Their guitars have stood the test of time and have been played by several of the most famous blues musicians. The brand itself is iconic, and the Washburn HB36 lives up to the hype while remaining relatively affordable. 

This semi-hollow-body electric guitar is a versatile instrument with the tone of a much more expensive model. In my opinion, the spruce top really pushes the tone of this instrument to the next level. Hollow-body guitars are, on average, more resonant than a solid body, and here Washburn has given this guitar a Paulownia block that increases sustain and reduces the risk of feedback at high volume. The semi-hollow-body gives this guitar a mellow tone that is well suited to the blues as well as jazz and rock. 

I love the distressed bronze hardware and the Grover 18:1 tuners. They are incredible and help the instrument stay solidly in tune. I also like that they are side mounted for ease of use. The construction of a quality instrument should focus on making the player sound their best. The tuners might seem like a smaller detail in the choice of guitar, but there is very little more frustrating than going out of tune at just the wrong time. The Grover tuners here give the player the confidence that their intonation will be solid when performing or practicing. 

One if the things I love the most about guitars is just how beautiful they are, and the Washburn HB36 just looks both fun and beautiful. Not everyone likes the faux-aged look, but if you do, then this guitar is right up your alley. It has a ton of personality! While it is pretty in photos, it looks even better in person. I recommend swinging by a guitar shop and checking this instrument out in person if you have an interest in a very reasonably priced guitar with a great sound. 

Overall, I found this guitar to be balanced and comfortable to play. The rosewood fretboard has a great matte feel and played fast and smooth. This is a lot of guitar for the price point – and it comes with a case! I commend Washburn for both the craftsmanship and the affordability.

Price: $699.00

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Paige founded Paige’s Strings Music Studio in 2017, and she has been teaching private music lessons for over 15 years. After receiving her bachelor’s in Music Education from Berry College and her master’s in Ethnomusicology from Queen’s University Belfast she taught English abroad in South Korea and Thailand before returning home to Atlanta. She is committed to fostering a musical community where all students can learn and grow together. She teaches violin, viola, piano, and of course the ukulele. Her studio also offers guitar, bass, mandolin, and banjo lessons in the Chamblee area.