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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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STEFAN NITSCHKE

MASTER GUITAR MAKER EXCLUSIVELY FOR GSI

My greatest motivation to build guitars is the process: when the instrument emerges from the raw materials, and I can form the sound closer and closer to my personal ideal...

Stefan Nitschke is a German luthier whose passion is the sound of the old masters of guitar building – Romanillos, Hauser, and Hernandez. Stefan was born in 1982. He started playing the guitar at the age of eleven. After a short period of learning classical guitar, he wanted to play the electric guitar and spent several years playing blues, rock, and jazz. However, eventually, he switched back to the classical guitar when he found his inspiration in the music of Francisco Tarrega and other early 20th-century composers.  In 2002, Stefan started his studies at the conservatory in Osnabrück where he learned the guitar under the tutelage of Ulrich Müller. Müller not only improved Stefan’s guitar skills but also encouraged him to build…

DANIELE MARRABELLO

MASTER GUITAR MAKER EXCLUSIVELY FOR GSI

Every guitar has a story to tell

Luthier Daniele Marrabello is one of the great younger talents currently on the Italian guitar making scene. He works in his hometown of Milan, and was also able to complete his studies in the same city at the Civic School of Luthiery. In his first 3 years he learned the basic techniques of building musical instruments, and for his final year of school he was able to apprentice in the workshop of maestro Enrico Bottelli in Voghera. In 2012 Daniele opened his workshop in Vimodrone, near Milan where he builds traditional instruments with particular attention to the beauty of the details and of the exceptional materials used. This quality is reflected in a sound, from guitar to guitar, that is…

ANTONIO DE TORRES

Master guitar maker
In the history of the classical guitar, no single individual is more important than Antonio de Torres Jurado (1817-1892), known as Torres, a guitar maker who achieved some local renown in his life but was never free from poverty. It is possible that the innovations we associate with Torres were inevitable: that the guitar could have evolved towards a form as harmonious as that which Torres created without the intervention of any individual. But by his intelligence and craftsmanship, Torres accelerated the process, choosing the best options from those available. Torres’ judgement restored the guitar’s viability at a time when it was manifestly failing to compete with louder, more dramatic instruments. By 1869, when he sold a guitar to Francisco Tárrega,…

See some of ANTONIO DE TORRES’s guitars

YOURI SOROKA

MASTER GUITAR MAKER EXCLUSIVELY FOR GSI

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…

DAKE TRAPHAGEN

MASTER GUITAR MAKER EXCLUSIVELY FOR GSI

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.…

TOBIAS BERG

Master guitar maker exclusively for GSI

When we learn how to truly listen, then many things do speak for themselves.

Tobias Berg was born in Helsingborg, Sweden in 1972, and grew up in the fishing village of Viken. After having built his first classical guitar in 1995, he eagerly set out to learn the art and craft of guitar making. His studies took him to Canada, England, and the U.S.A. where he completed several courses and diplomas and spent time with top luthiers including Robert Ruck and Jeff Elliott. In 1998, he settled down in Germany. Since then he has been working full-time as a guitar maker. First for six years as an employee at “Lakewood Guitars” where the active work on more than 4500 guitars helped to hone his woodworking skills. In 2004, he successfully achieved his goal of…

See some of TOBIAS BERG’s guitars

JOHN GILBERT

MASTER GUITAR MAKER FEATURED AT GSI

I'll never forget the first time I saw one of my guitars played on a concert, it was a moving experience... Like seeing one of your children becoming successful.

John Gilbert (1922-2013) is remembered as having been one of the more successful and popular of the “innovative” makers of the past 40 years. His instruments were played by an entire generation of guitarists that included the likes of David Russell, Raphaella Smits, David Tanenbaum, Marc Teicholz, David Leisner, Fred Hand and many others. Gilbert’s approach to guitar making was largely influenced by his engineering background (he had been a machinist for Hewlett-Packard) which not only meant that his craftsmanship was extremely precise, but that he also had innovative ideas with respect to sound production – he had a special system taking into account the dimensions, weight and stiffness of materials, that was very controlled and exacting. His most famous…

EREZ PERELMAN

Master guitar maker exclusively for GSI

I dedicate myself to making one instrument at a time, a unique creation which is thoughtfully built for the particular guitar player.

The guitar has been Erez Perelman’s passion for over half of his life. He picked it up when he was 13 and never put it down. He formally studied both classical and flamenco styles of playing, and has had the opportunity to study with some incredible players such as the Romeros, Christopher Parkening and Paul Galbraith. He spent many years teaching, performing professionally and collaborating with other musicians. Long before discovering the guitar, he enjoyed working with wood. Woodworking is an art that is in his blood; he learned sculpting at a young age from his grandfather. Sculpting has taught him two invaluable lessons. Firstly, he learned how to feel the wood he works with. Wood is a complex medium,…

JOSE RAMIREZ IV

Master guitar maker exclusively for GSI
José Enrique Ramírez García (José IV; 1953 – 2000) was born in Madrid during May 1953. He started working as an apprentice in 1971 and reached the category of journeymen in 1977. In 1988, he decided to run the family business with his sister Amalia Ramírez. His idea was to re-define the models that were being built then. In the mid 80s, a change had been detected in the taste in sound of some major guitarists, and the Ramírez family began to make their guitars exactly what these players needed. In 1979, José IV got the recognition of Andrés Segovia, since the Maestro chose a particular guitar one day from among several guitars that the workshop had previously selected and had sent to him.…

BASTIEN BURLOT

MASTER GUITAR MAKER EXCLUSIVELY FOR GSI

I like to think that nature is far from having delivered all its secrets...

French luthier, Bastien Burlot, has built guitars for famous guitarists such as Roland Dyens and Thomas Viloteau. However, with his most recent “Alkemia models”, Bastien is exploring a completely new guitar-making path that combines traditional lutherie with spirituality and symbolism. His guitars and rosettes are inspired by the great cathedrals of France such as La Cathédrale d’Amiens, Chartres, Strasbourg and Paris. Bastien started his music education as a guitarist at a very young age when his dream was to become a concert player. He followed a traditional course of study that led him to enroll at the Conservatory of Lille in Northern France. Then Bastien joined Roland Dyens’ guitar class at the prestigious Paris Conservatoire after having passed a very…

FRITZ OBER

Master guitar maker exclusively for GSI
Fritz Ober (1955-2020) was born in the town of Rosenheim, Germany. He spent his youth in the small village of Uebersee am Chiemsee, where he learned to play the guitar and discovered a love for woodworking early on. He built his first guitars primarily for himself, and much of his instruction in those years was gained by reading books on the subject. As Fritz became more skilled and firmly on the path to becoming a professional guitar maker, he apprenticed at the workshop of Helmut Buchsteiner, who was the only known Luthier (besides Hauser II) in Upper Bavaria at that time. After completing the 2-year apprenticeship, Fritz opened up his own workshop in Munich, where he found quick success and…

See some of FRITZ OBER’s guitars

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