Darren Jay Ashba (born November 10, 1972 in Monticello, Indiana) is an American guitarist and songwriter. He is currently a guitarist in Sixx:A.M. and Guns N` Roses, and is also known for his work with hard rock bands BulletBoys, and Beautiful Creatures.
Ashba has worked with various artists including Mötley Crüe, Drowning Pool, Marion Raven and Aimee Allen.
Daren Jay (DJ) Ashba was born in Monticello, Indiana on the early Friday morning of November 10. At age one, the Ashba family moved to Fairbury, Illinois, a small country farm town where he grew up. His father left him at age three leaving his mother to raise him. His mother was a classical pianist, who started teaching Daren about music. He was instantly obsessed with it. Daren started playing piano at age three and played his first recital at age five, where he performed Beethoven’s classical masterpiece "Ode to Joy". At age six he began playing drums. Daren would set up garbage cans, pots and pans, buckets, and whatever else he could find to resemble a drum kit. He would beat on them for months and months, hours on end. After finally getting a real set, he studied rhythm. At age eight, DJ worked detasseling corn in the fields for one year until he was able to buy his first electric guitar out of the Sears catalog. The Harmony white Flying V was priced at $89.00. As he rode on the bus to the corn fields each day, he sat with a friend, an older guitar player from a local band. Daren would take his pocket knife and carve a fret board on the seat in front of them. His buddy would take the knife, poke 3 holes, and say “That`s an A chord,” go home and practice that tonight. Everyday Daren looked forward to going to work so he could learn a new chord. Daren grew up in a eight bedroom house with no TV, due to his religious mother. He would sit in his room and practice his new guitar 17 hours a day. At age 16 Daren went to live with his father in Logansport, Indiana for a year, before moving back to Fairbury. For his 16th birthday his dad took him to his first concert: Mötley Crüe`s Girls, Girls, Girls Tour. It was the night that changed his life forever.
At age 19 DJ packed up all his things in his mini van and drove himself to Hollywood, California, where he joined a band called Barracuda. He toured with the band for two years. He then released his first instrumental album ASHBA: Addiction to the Friction, and signed his first record deal. Daren went on to win six Best Guitar Player Awards. DJ Ashba co-founded the band Beautiful Creatures and landed a deal with Warner Bros. Records. He wrote all the music for the Warner release, and songs such as "Ride" landed in the Warner Bros. major motion picture Rollerball while the song "Wasted" landed in the movie Valentine. In addition, the song "1a.m." was featured in both, the TV hit show Smallville and the Howard Stern show. The first concert Beautiful Creatures played was with Kiss on the farewell tour in front of 60,000 people. The band`s numerous other tours include Ozzfest 2001, the Rolling Rock tour, a Japanese tour and dates with Marilyn Manson. Beautiful Creatures released the video for "Wasted" on MTV and a full concert for HBO Reverb. National TV hits include the band`s appearance with Knoc-Tourn-Al on the Craig Kilborn Show. Two performance highlights that stand out were at the Sundance Film Festival and Mile High Stadium.
These days, DJ Ashba has teamed up with Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx and James Michael creating the band Sixx:A.M. (Sixx, Ashba, Michaels) The album entitled The Heroin Diaries Soundtrack features there most well known song "Life Is Beautiful". Daren went on tour with Sixx:A.M. to support the Crüe Fest 2008 Tour. Daren co-produced and wrote Mötley Crüe’s Saints of Los Angeles album, which was nominated for a Grammy. On the 21st of March 2009 Ashba was appointed the new Guns N` Roses guitarist, replacing Robin Finck.
Full Name at Birth
Daren Jay Ashba
Date of Birth
Guitarist, Songwriter, Composer, Enterpreanur
Claim to Fame
Guitarist for Sixx: A.M.
Eleven Seven Music