Benito Ferrer Granada Guitar

Benito Ferrer (1845-1925) is considered the father of the Granada school of guitarmaking. He was born in Orihuela (Alicante) in 1845. He moved to Granada at a very young age, where he started studying medicine. But he liked the zambra (flamenco bar) in Sacromonte, and he built a guitar for himself so he could play in the zambra. His guitar was so popular that he set up his first workshop in Calle Jarrería (1875). Later on, he moved to Callejón de las Campanas, and finally, to Calle Santiago.

Building in the Torres style, he learnt with Juan Ortega. Fruit of his talent were the exact and final rules for the distribution of the frets in the bandurria and spanish lute, and the change from the old gut and silk strings to metal ones. In order to put into practice all these ideas, he had to reinforce the interior of the instrument considerably, so it would support the pressure of the metal strings. His guitars went through several stages, taking shape, and developing to take the current form.

Things went quite well. For instance, while an instrument normally cost six pesetas, he managed to sell them for fifteen. The highest price that was paid for one of his guitars was one hundred and fifty pesetas, which was not bad at that time.

Well-known people such as Recuerda, Molina Zúñiga and Manuel Jofré, among many others, played his instruments. Andrés Segovia, in his first moments, which were hard, received a beautiful gift from Don Benito: a studio guitar.

 

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