Resources on Guitarmaking by Ron Fernandez
1. American Lutherie: Journal of the Guild of American Luthiers. This is a 70-page magazine, published 4 times a year. It is written by the guild's members who are a diverse group of instrument makers--there are guitarmakers, lutemakers, violin specialists, etc. I'm a member and I really enjoy the articles. It costs $39 for a year subscription. The address is:
The Guild of American Luthiers, 8222 South Park Avenue,Tacoma, WA 98408, Phone and Fax: 206-472-7853, www.luth.org
2. The best book on guitarmaking is: Guitarmaking: Tradition and Technology by William R. Cumpiano and Jonathan D.Natelson. San Francisco: Chronicle Books.$34.95. We sell this book at Fernandez Music This 380-page book shows step-by-step how to make classical and steel string guitars. It is very comprehensive.
3. Other important books are: Things about the Guitar by Jose Ramirez III about $35. The Development of the Modern Guitar by John Huber, about $15. Antonio de Torres: Guitar maker--His Life & Work by Jose Romanillos--this is a masterpiece and should be read by all players and luthiers--it is now available in paperback.
4. There is a very good section on classical guitars in: Guitars: Music, History, Construction and Players From the Renaissance to Rock by Tom and Mary Anne Evans 1977. This book is in many libraries. See also, "The Guitar Maker and His Techniques," by H.E. Huttig in Guitar Review, 1965, number 28, pages 1 to16.
5. Classical and Flamenco Guitarmaking with Benito Huipe by Ronald Louis Fernández has been sold in a number of countries by Stewart MacDonald and Luthiers Mercantile (retail $59.95). It is shown in colleges, technical schools and even Soledad Prison. In 110 minutes it shows how Benito Huipe makes fine guitars--from scratch--with simple handtools. It took me a month to shoot and another month to edit. There are over a hundred scenes which are divided into 45 sections. I wrote a 60-page text for this video which you hear as you actually see Benito making his guitars. In March of 2007 there will be an extended DVD version of this video. It looks like it will be over 210 minutes long whereas the original VHS version was 110 minutes. It will include many new scenes, there is a completely new voice over for many scenes, the color is improved, the transition are refined, etc.-in short, there will be a number of improvements over the original version
6. Essential information for anyone buying, selling or owning a classical, flamenco or nylon-string folk guitar is contained in my new video, Nylon String Guitar Care ($29.95 retail).This video will help you improve the playability of your guitar and protect it value.
7. Another book on the Madrid school of guitarmaking is the Art and Craft of Making Classical Guitars by Manuel Rodriguez (2003)--this book gives a contrasting view to the story put forth by Jose Ramirez III.
8. Another journal is Guitarmaker: The Journal of Fretted Instrument Construction and Repair put out by The Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans, 177 Low Rd., Malone, NY 12953. www.guitarmaker.org
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