Our hearts are deeply saddened to announce the loss of a close friend and historical legend of the worldwide guitar community. Manuel Reyes of Córdoba, Spain, passed away on Monday from natural causes, and the funeral mass was held today.

From left: GSI President David Collett, Manuel Reyes Sr., Manuel Reyes Jr.

From left: GSI President David Collett, Manuel Reyes Sr., Manuel Reyes Jr.

The guitars made by Manuel Reyes are considered by many to be among the rarified elite for flamenco instruments ever built, and they have been played by countless professionals for more than half a century. Each one carried a soul that was distinct to Reyes and deeply entrenched in the Andalusian style of southern Spain. As the exclusive U.S. dealer for his new instruments, we were able to see many of his awe-inspiring masterpieces pass through our doors when brand-new. We also had the privilege to visit with the maestro over the course of many years and to hear his stories and learn of his life journey through his craft. Reyes was truly a remarkable luthier and personality whose legacy will no doubt continue to be kept alive not just in the history books but in the hands of players for many years to come.

Manuel Reyes is survived by his son Manuel and daughter Manuela. We are in close contact with them and lending any support needed during this hard time. Please feel welcome to share your thoughts in the comments below, or watch our three-part interview with Reyes in his workshop in Cordoba a few years back.

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9 Responses to “In Memoriam – Manuel Reyes”

  1. May he rest in peace. I was hoping to meet the maestro one day and tell him in person how much I have enjoyed his brilliant guitars. I’m lucky enough to own an ’80 Reyes and be able to play and enjoy his heritage every day.
    Moraito, Paco, Morente, Manuel Reyes it’s time for a break in flamenco land.

  2. Finn Wandahl says:

    I am the owner of a classical Manuel Reyes from 1976 with a fantastic powerful sound. No doubt Manuel Reys was among the greatest luthiers. May his sould rest in peace.

  3. James Green says:

    This past spring I was in Cordoba and had gone twice to visit the Shop of Manuel Reyes, but the shop was closed both times.

    I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere condolences to the family at this difficult time.

    It has been said that as the sun sets on this earthly plane, it is just dawning within realms that are eternal and beyond the vision of most earthly visitors.

    Enjoy your journey and when you awaken, those same hands that crafted the most magical guitars will be enjoyed by angels.

  4. Garrett says:

    I am very sorry to hear of Mr. Reyes’ passing. It is indeed a great loss to the guitar and, ultimately, music world. Fortunately, he has left an endearing and lasting legacy of many very fine guitars. I am lucky enough to own one of his few negras and am very blessed, indeed. I am sorry for his family and his friends to have lost such a wonderful man. R.I.P, Senor Reyes.

  5. Allen E says:

    I’m shocked and saddened by this news. I have a 1969 blanca that I cherish. He passed away far too early. He brought immeasurable joy to all those who’ve played or heard his wonderful instruments as well as those who aspire to build fine guitars like his.

  6. Chris Kok says:

    If you are limited to only one great flamenco guitar , look no further . It has to be Manuel Reyes. However, every now and then we are discontented and would keep searching for guitars in the ( faintest ) hope that one or some of them may excel Reyes. Constantly, we are disappointed with the expedition . Reyes excels all !
    The great master will be missed forever. His mastery lives on with every note we play with his masterpiece .

  7. El mundo de la guitarra ha perdido a uno de los mas grandes maestros guitarreros, pero siempre estará presente entre nosotros con sus guitarras.
    Descanse en Paz

  8. Jonathan Reiter says:

    Manuel Reyes’ voice will be heard for as long as his guitars are played. And that will be for a long long time. My sincere condolences to the Reyes family.

  9. May his name be held in fond memory.


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