Behind every incredible guitar is an amazing luthier.

Meet the guitar makers

Over the years we have cultivated important relationships with premiere guitar makers around the globe. These relationships continue the excellence and dedication that Guitar Salon International places on supporting everyone in our guitar community.

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To me, guitar making is more than technique or science, more than just the finished product. It is an experiential, hands-on relationship one develops over years of trial and error...

For Dake Traphagen becoming a luthier was a very pleasant surprise in his life. When he was young his parents bought him a viola from a violin maker who told him “you have workman’s hands”. It was such an interesting and random thing to say to a young musician, but in the end, he was right! Around twelve years later, in 1972, Dake started learning the art of lutherie with the very same violin maker, Mr. Ed Hunnington. Before learning from a professional, Dake was a self-taught maker. He built his first instrument on the dining room table of his apartment, using a couple of hand tools, and books for clamps. Building instruments very quickly turned out to be Dake’s passion.…



Listening to guitarists and the continuous study of the physics and work of other luthiers give me the rules how to build my guitars.

Fernando lives and works in Alcala de Guadaira, a small village just outside of Seville, deep in the heart of Andalucia, birthplace and home to flamenco. However his origins a a guitar maker began in Granada when Antonio Ariza encouraged him to build on his own after seeing the quality of his work while Fernando was assisting in the guitar shop of Valeriano Bernal. Under the tutelage of both Antonio Ariza and Juan Garcia Fernandez, he built his first guitar and later entered the family workshop of Francisco Manuel Diaz where he fine tuned his skills in all aspects of construction from the cutting of the wood to the finishing with shellac, largely with the support of Francisco’s son, Victor…


Music is emotion and therefore the instrument has to move people.

Elías Bonet Monné was born in Barcelona, Spain in 1977. He completed his studies in industrial design at the EINA Centre for Art and Design in Barcelona and graduated from the Liceu Conservatory where he studies classical and flamenco guitar. Elías leads a very active life-style. He was the world trial bike champion several times. In 2000, he co-founded, a design studio, however 9 years later he left the field of industrial design to fully commit himself to guitar-making. His work as a luthier began when destiny led him to the workshop run by the Yagüe brothers, where Raúl, the younger brother, agreed to help him to fix his guitar. Very quickly, Elías became good friends with the Yagüe…


Master guitar maker exclusively for GSI

A good guitar is empirical; it is borne of the experience that the luthier accumulates throughout his or her career

José Luis Romanillos Vega was born in Madrid in 1932 and at thirteen years of age he was apprenticed to a Madrid cabinetmaking firm. In 1956 he moved to England to work in a hospital in Epsom and a few months later, he transferred to a hospital in London. Five years after his move to England, he made his first Spanish guitar in London, a city foreign to his native roots. In 1970 he set up a workshop as a guitar maker in the village of Semley, Wiltshire, encouraged by the English guitarist Julian Bream. Romanillos guitars have received recognition from world-class guitarists as much for their sound as for their aesthetic makeup and attractive appearance. The pure sound and the harmonic balance…


Born in Leningrad, Russia in 1981, Mijael Kharash’s musical origins started with the violin at a very young age. It wasn’t long however before he first heard the sound of the classical guitar and became fascinated with its tonal possibilities, falling permanently in love with the instrument to this day. After the collapse of the USSR, his family moved to Israel and after leaving school, he did military service, then held a variety of odd jobs including construction worker, cook, cabinetmaker and fisherman! In 2007 Mijail travelled to Spain and met Carmelo Gonzales in Ronda who generously shared his craft with him. In 2009 he moved to Granada and for six years lived in a cave of the Fuente del…



The goal of my guitars is to give you goosebumps when you hold them in your hands.

Youri Soroka is a French-Ukrainian luthier from Orléat (Puy-de-Dôme), France. He builds guitars using traditional construction methods and local supplies. Youri used to be a computer software development engineer for a large banking company in Paris. However, at the age of 38, Youri started reading books about guitar-making and cabinetmaking and decided to become a luthier. All of this was triggered by a simple project when Youri wanted to fix an old Czech plywood guitar that he bought for $30 in Ukraine as a teenager. He learned how to replace the soundboard with solid wood and was very satisfied with the result of his work. It motivated him to explore more guitar building techniques. After becoming a full-time luthier Youri’s…



I had played the instrument since 1932. In that year I returned to Paris, I couldn't bring my piano with me but I was introduced to the guitar and was captivated at once

Robert Bouchet was one of the greatest makers of the twentieth century and the founding father of what is called today as the “French school of guitar making”. His career was quite unique, because he built his first instrument at the age of 48. It didn’t stop him from establishing a reputation of one of the most influential makers of the twentieth century. Before becoming a luthier, Bouchet was a painter and an artist. He changed his career path, when he decided to built a new guitar for himself. His old guitar was stolen during World War II and this motivated him to try to built his own instrument. Therefore, shortly after the war, in 1946, he built himself a guitar which…


Master guitar maker exclusively for GSI

My penchant for mathematics led me to seek the underlying geometrical rules in traditional Spanish guitars

Andrea Tacchi was born in Florence, Italy in 1956 into a deeply-rooted Florentine family with a rich artisan heritage in both jewelry-making and wood-working. At a young age, he took interest in creating musical instruments, building his first guitar at age 15. While at university studying mechanical engineering, he met and began an apprenticeship with Argentinian luthier Ricardo Brané, ultimately leaving university to pursue a career as a professional luthier. After Brané’s death, Tacchi traveled extensively to Spain, England, France, and the United States to study with the top masters of the day; in 1981 he went to Spain to meet with Paulino Bernabe Sr., José Ramírez III and Francisco & Gabriel Fleta to get their critical opinions and advice…


Master guitar maker exclusively for GSI

In building Concert Guitars, I always strive to create well-balanced instruments with a full, rich sound rather than just aiming for loud guitars.

We are very pleased to introduce German luthier Annette Stephany, a young German luthier whom David Collett met in Italy a few years ago and whom we are now proud to be representing in the US. As it turns out, she will be completing her 31st guitar under her own label on her 31st birthday, which also happens to mark her 10th year as a luthier, so it’s hard not to see this as a propitious beginning for us all. Annette became fascinated with luthierie at the age of 14 when she met a violin maker, and subsequently her father, who was very handy as a woodworker, introduced her to working with wood. At the age of 21, after high…
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