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

Classical guitar on tap in Merced
Merced Sun-Star, February 4th

A classical guitar has nylon strings rather than the steel strings found on its electric cousin. The space between the strings and the fret board are further apart on the wooden instrument, which requires players to be much more precise with their fingers...Read more

Lute master Paul O'Dette charms crowd on visit to Cleveland Classical Guitar ...
cleveland.com (blog), February 2nd

season of the Cleveland Classical Guitar Society. Paul O'Dette performed in Plymouth Church's resonant Herr Chapel to a capacity crowd, presenting a program titled "Semper Dowland, semper dolens," which O'Dette translated in remarks from the stage...Read more

An evening of classical guitar at Cambrian
NorthernLife.ca, February 1st

An evening of classical guitar at Cambrian. By: Sudbury Northern Life Staff. | Feb 01, 2016 - 10:00 PM |. Acclaimed Dutch Classical Guitarist Robert Bekkers Robert Bekkers, will perform in concert at Cambrian College on Feb. 8. Supplied photo...Read more

Terrence Shrader to perform classical guitar at Prescott Valley Public Library
Big Bug News, January 28th

Hear classical music in a way that isn't performed very often: with a guitar. Terrence Shrader, director of music at the Orme School of Arizona in Mayer, will give a classical guitar performance at the Prescott Valley Public Library, 7401 E. Civic...Read more

Beatles Cover Album 'Blackbird' Boosts Classical Guitar Star Miloš
Forbes, January 26th

The music of the Beatles is heading back to the charts – thanks to Miloš, the world's most popular classical guitarist. He has just released a covers album, Blackbird, presenting the most successful group of all time's songs as they have never been...Read more

Brandon chose family over fame, performs classical guitar with LSO
LubbockOnline.com, January 21st

The Lubbock Symphony Orchestra did not have to search far for a guest artist for this weekend's concerts. Classical guitarist and recording artist David Brandon had been expected to carve his own career as a touring artist — especially after studying...Read more

Segovia Classical Guitar Series Runs Through Winter and Spring
Northwestern University NewsCenter, January 20th

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Upcoming recitals by well-known artists Paul O'Dette, the Waller and Maxwell Duo, Ekachai Jearakul and Alvaro Pierri will continue the 2015-16 Segovia Classical Guitar Series programming at Northwestern University through spring...Read more

A quick guide to the classical guitar
Classical-Music.com, January 13th

Origins: The earliest guitar-like instrument we have evidence of belonged to the singer Har-Mose, who lived c1500 BC Egypt. Debate over the exact origin of the modern instrument is mainly divided over whether the guitar derives from the Latin lute or...Read more