Classical and Nylon Stringed Guitars

Nylon-stringed guitars have always been poor cousins to the steel-stringed instruments favored by contemporary musicians, but classical and Flamenco guitars produce some of the most beautiful sounds to emanate from an acoustic instrument.

Historically, Spain has been a center for classical guitar makers, as has Italy. In the United States, some of the biggest guitar makers began by making nylon-stringed instruments. Gibson started with nylon, as did Martin.

In particular, Martin has been enormously influential. In the 1950s, its OO-18G, with a spruce body, mahogany back, and rosewood fingerboard, set the standard, and collectors covet such gorgeous examples today.

But Martin’s most famous nylon-string guitar is arguably one of the worst looking instruments on the planet. It’s a Martin N-20, which was purchased in 1969 by Willie Nelson. Nelson plays with a pick, even though the N-20 was designed to be played by finger-style player, hence the lack of a pick guard. Nelson calls his beloved Martin Trigger, and he’s rode his axe hard, so much so that he’s carved a deep, ever-widening hole in the front of the guitar between the bridge and the sound hole.


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Recent News: Classical Guitars

Source: Google News

Brownsville Festival touts top classical guitar talent
Valley morning Star, March 26th

Some of the top classically trained guitarists are performing and competing this week at the 14th annual Brownsville Guitar Festival at the University of Texas at Brownsville. “Student guitar ensembles from across the country prepare for and save up...Read more

'Heartstrings'
Global Times, March 26th

Dressed in black and wearing make-up, Yang Xuefei looks no different than other fashionable and straight forward girls with a typical Beijing accent. If it weren't for her undecorated long nails on her right hand, it would be easy to forget that this...Read more

VIDEO: Carson Gritton's classical guitar at 2015 Hold On Talent Slam
Loveland Magazine, March 25th

In front of an audience of 350, more than $3,500 cold cash was awarded to honor the performing art of area teens. There was no entry fee for the contestants who sent audition tapes for the opportunity to compete under the bright stage lights, and...Read more

Los Angeles Guitar Quartet fulfills local dreams with delightful program for ...
cleveland.com (blog), March 23rd

SHAKER HEIGHTS, Ohio -- The Cleveland Classical Guitar Society achieved a long-sought goal Saturday night when they hosted the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet in Plymouth Church, an occasion that Eric Mann, director of the CCGS, said was "years in the ...Read more

Sunrise Rocks - Preview of Upcoming Classical Guitar Performance
WTXL ABC 27, March 20th

(WTXL) - An upcoming series of classical guitar performances are giving people in the Tallahassee area a chance to see a live performance for free. The Tallahassee Classical Guitar Society is hosting a series of free concerts featuring the finalists...Read more

Cleveland Classical Guitar Society Presents the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet on ...
Cleveland Scene Weekly, March 18th

Launched more than thirty years ago, the Grammy Award-winning Los Angeles Guitar Quartet (LAGQ) plays everything from Bach to Bluegrass. But for their visit to the International Series of the Cleveland Classical Guitar Society, John Darman, Matthew...Read more

Curtis Institute's Jason Vieaux: Q&A with Grammy-winning classical guitarist
Philly.com, March 1st

Below, he speaks of winning a Grammy, his road to a classical guitar career, and . . . Eddie Van Halen: Congratulations on the Grammy. What has that whole thing been like? We're still in shock. The first big shock was getting nominated, because there...Read more

Cleveland Classical Guitar Society: A Conversation With Gaëlle Solal
Cleveland Scene Weekly, February 27th

On their website, the Cleveland Classical Guitar Society describes Gaëlle Solal as having “a big personality and energy beyond compare.” I'd like to second that, because within the first five minutes of our Skype conversation I quickly realized that...Read more