While in Edmonton last weekend I was left with two days of time to kill while miranda sold her wares to al those rich oil folk at the craft show. I took this opportunity to photowander old haunts and get gawked at by the locals. (it would seem that a dude having coloured hair in Alberta is still a reason to stare in disbelief) I also took the opportunity to peruse all the music shops in a different city for god knows all the local ones in the vancouver area are sick of me at this point. Hell i know there stock almost as good as they do. :) I really like doing this when we go to different cities mostly because different places bring in different stuff from different places.

I do appreciate living in Vancity though, I have to say the selection of products carried at our local Long & McQuade and Tom Lee are far better then what can be found in store in E-town. While at the Edmonton Axe Music I probably spent an hour checking out guitars and amp’s and the like and having gone to every store in town i would have to say that Axe Music had the best selection of just about everything. I picked up a Tanglewood guitar. Now I have seen these in magazines but never played one because they are not really carried in vancouver stores. I picked up this guitar

After playing it for a second I was kinda blown away with the sound. Now to me sound is a very personal thing. A good sounding guitar really depends on what your playing and less on brand and price. So I have played some very nice & expensive taylor guitars and been less blown away then this one. I wandered about the store a lot played other guitars and I even left the store and played Jonathan Livingston Seagull in the X-Terra for a while as a pallet cleanser and came back to this guitar and I was still blown away!
Now I have to many guitars! There I have said it out loud but even I know that it’s true. For a guy that hardly plays gigs and is not really particularly good at playing the guitar to begin with, I simply have to many. Bringing another one home would be getting into the relam of just plain silly. It took a while but I talked myself out of buying another guitar even thought I was convinced that it was the BEST THING EVAH and I left the store!

Now we were staying with some awesome old friends from high school and their daughter decided that for her birthday she wanted an acoustic guitar. So we all went guitar shopping that sunday for an acoustic. Having been to every single guitar shop/pawn shop I could find I recommend Axe Music because of the selection. As always I also recommend a Seagull guitar because price for quality Seagull almost always wins out. So I was letting her pick out guitars that she liked and i would play them so she could hear how they sounded as well as let her play them as best she could. While she was playing away on a really nice S6 (that she eventually bought) I picked up this ever lovely Tanglewood guitar and played something. Everybody stopped what they were doing and turned to look at me playing this guitar because it sounded that good!! We bought both guitars that afternoon.

We spent that night in Westlock at Miranda’s parents house and I stood the guitar in the corner of the guest bedroom and while in bed watching Game Of Thrones on the laptop we heard a creak from the guitar and then a loud thwack almost like a string had broke. Upon inspection there is a crack from the bridge to the bottom of the guitar about 2 inches from the centre. It is a slight crack to be sure but a crack nonetheless.

We were heading home to Vancouver first thing in the morning and planed to be half way into the mountains by 9:30am when Axe Music in Edmonton opened so while being worried about it I thought to my self Axe Music is a big company the customer service must be good? Right? Well not really. I phoned the day we got back and Darren the sales rep that ‘helped’ us was not in yet “Yup he should be in in about an hour.” I phoned and hour later, “Yeah he should be in right away” I phoned a half hour after that. “Oh Darren Yeah he’s gone for the day. You will have to call him tomorrow”

Tomorrow rolls around and I finally get a hold of Darren the sales rep, I tell him the story and he is like yup that is no good whatsoever. “What we are going to do” he says, “is we will get a rep to pick up the guitar from you in Vancouver and we will send it to the manufacture. If we have one in stock we will send you another one. Other wise we will get one ordered so it we can exchange it with that.” I was thinking wow! Perfect, I don’t have to worry this company, it would seem they are clearly on their game when it comes to customer service! Perfect. Darren just had to talk to some people in the office to set that all up but they were out for the day so I should call him the next day to find out the details.

the Next day I call and Darren isn’t in the store that day…. Mmmm… Ok well maybe he was sick that day. No worries. I call again the next day and when I finally get ahold of Darren he apologized for his absence (he was actually sick) but that I need to talk to Debbie to set it all up who will be in after the long Weekend. “Ok no worries” I say “I am not really in a rush” these folks are here to help me out I am in good hands I will call on tuesday.

Tuesday rolls in and I get in to the office and make some coffee pick up the phone give em a ring get Debbie on the line and say “Hey Darren sent me your way about the tanglewood guitar with the cracked top.”
“What guitar?” Was her reply. It becomes clear after a moment or two that she has no idea what the heck I am talking about so I give her the brief rundown of I bought this guitar and the top cracked and I live in Vancouver.
“Oh well what do you want me to do about it?” was her reply.
“Well Darren said that you would set up getting it in to you guys. I preceded to tell her what Darren said we were going to do.
“Ya well your going to have to ship it to me on your dime both ways” she barked out at me “we will take a look and decide if we will send you something back.”

Having dealt with Long & McQuade on matters similar to this I guess I had an unrealistic expectation of the service that I would get from Axe Music.