Many have asked (mostly guitarists) what brand of guitar I use. Currently, I’m using a 2002 Fontanilla guitar built by Filipino-American luthier Alan Fontanilla. Although I typically favor the tender tones of the spruce-top guitar, Alan’s cedar-top guitar provides a “refreshing departure” into a more hot-blooded pagan sound (listen).
I like using the Fontanilla for live performances due to its great playability and superb sound projection. And simply because “it kicks ass”.
For the Art of Harana recording, I used a vintage spruce-top 1962 Velazquez “El Clasico” (except for tracks 3, 5 & 7*). It possesses a sweet and full-bodied sound with great sustain as only a 48-year old guitar can. This guitar perfectly complements the singing tones of a harana (listen).
But as often happens with older guitars, the fretboard has bent considerably due to decades of string tension. This results into higher action that makes it more challenging to play. If you’re detecting labored passages in the recording, that is my excuse!
|1. Fontanilla (2002)||cedar||listen|
|2. Velasquez (1962 “El Clasico”)||spruce||listen|
|3. Antonio Marin (1989)||spruce||listen|
|4. Kohno (1988 “Special”)||spruce||listen|
|5. Cordoba 75R (1999)||spruce||listen|
* played on Fontanilla guitar