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Although his stern Irish grandmother taught him to "double-pick" mandolin like a buzzing bee to impress friends at parties or get a "spanking," with her shoe; it wasn't until age 8, Frank shocked his parents who caught him hiding in their bedroom "playing along note for note" with the Dick Dale hit "Peter Gunn" on his father's guitar. He took Folk lessons but soon overtook his teacher and was allowed to perform at the Pomona Fair with a trio. Young Frank played his first paying gig, a Jewish wedding, where he played Hava Nagila and Miserlou when he was 11. With the help of an actor's makeup kit from a prop man from The Blue Angels T.V. series, he bore a goatee and wrinkled skin into bar to gig at age 14. By 16, his band The Loved Ones won a Battle of the Bands and toured with the Coasters and the Outsiders. He opened for B.B. King at the Phoenix Convention Center and after trading some trills and an inspirational conversation backstage with BB, Frank was invited to play at UCLA with BB but, regretfully, could not get permission to go because of a final exam in Psychology, for which he earned a degree and also two Public School Teaching Credentials. He was in the top 10 contestants in the Jimi Hendrix Electric Guitar Competition in Seattle, which encompassed four N.W. States- but the release form was sent to the wrong PO Box and he received it the day after the competition. He has over 100 original songs copyrighted with the Library of Congress and writes lyrics and new material profusely since he "Stopped playing other people's stuff in the mid-'70's…Why copy them when you can just tap the source of the stream like they do?" At the Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach, near his home, another conversation Frank had with Pat Martino, in the early 1980's confirmed the idea that there is a stream of consciousness that we, as artists, can tap into. "You feel the FLOW, man. It flows and you go with it," Pat told Frank when he asked him why he played with his eyes closed so often. He studied Advanced Harmony and Ethnomusicology at LMU and took private lessons from various well-known teachers in the Hollywood Area. Outside of the USA, Frank Ashley has played in Japan, Central America and the U.K. He recorded in Seattle with sound engineer, Mike Foss, who also recorded Kurt Cobain, Heart, Phish, and Soundgarden but the master disk was locked into a safe and never released due partially to budgeting constraints but more because of a tasteless, derogatory remark made by the artist who was being featured during the listening party where there were investors from Virgin and other international Record Labels. Frank Ashley received a BILLBOARD AWARD certificate for "Jump Start My Heart" in which he happens to mention the exact voltage and amperes used in an automobile battery charger. He won recognition in the Marshall Amplifier "Stun Solo" guitar event for his recorded contribution to Jim Marshall's International Reelin' and Rockin' competition and is an officially recognized "Stun Soloist" for Marshall Valve amplifiers. He was supplied with a 30th Anniversary Blue Levant Triple Channel Eleven Tube Amp by nick Bowcott of Grim Reaper. Frank has been in about 48 bands-Jazz, Rock, Folk, Punk, Fusion, Surf, Experimental… and recorded both anonymously, as a studio man in Hollywood and with members of many talented groups under BMI and contributed to movie soundtracks and various charity fund raisers. He starter Morro Rock Guitars which were heavily inlaid but when his co-luthier, David Corona was killed while riding a fabricated electric trike on HWY 1, he lost inertia and stopped designing guitars which included prototypes for guitars which could be played by handicapped individuals and "ergonomic" designs which the guitarist could wear like a vest. Although specializing in 4, 5, 6, 7, 10 an 12 string (custom doubleneck) and Octave Guitars, he also dabbles in sitar, lap steel, dobro, ukulele, dobro, balalaika and recently, Flamenco, "after a severe gout attack made it impossible to hold a pick for a while. I pushed down a string on a nylon strung and heard harmonics I had only noticed with a rumbling Marshall stack cranked to 11…but with the subtleties of a choir like I heard once in West Minister Abbey. Like the breath of a dozen angels…but with a vibration deep in my chest." Frank also studied many martial arts and spent over 17 years training and teaching. "The arts have a commonality in that they absorb energy, store it and direct the force outward…into the audience, on to a canvas or into an opponent's vital points in an artistic form." He has recorded and written so many types of music that he just doesn't fit into any single genre. When asked what type of music he plays, he looks off into the distance and seems to transport into another dimension…"I do original stuff but sometimes, I do the Musical Prostitute thing and get paid." He is always interested in touring and to collaborate online with other musicians and is trying to "Get the Logic Pro8 thing going." Frank prepared for the Jimi Hendrix Family competition by sleeping on jimi Hendrix's grave before it was moved and commercialized. "Frank is eccentric- the sign of a true artist. He can write a song in a heartbeat and has a sense of humor that can can take unexpected twists and turns. I never get tired of his music or his sense of humor," said his wife.
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