1987 Manuel Contreras "Double Top" CD/CSAR
|Back & Sides||CSA Rosewood|
|Scale Length||650 mm|
|Nut width||53 mm|
|Finish||French Polish Top|
The Contreras Double-Top is perhaps his best-known and most sought-after design. Several players have performed on this model since the 1980's, including the Romeros. The name "double-top" is actually a slight misnomer: in Spanish "tapa" means "cover" and actually refers to an additional piece of wood that is "covering" the inside of the back. So in reality, the back (not the top) is doubled-up, with a rosewood exterior and cedar interior (the two pieces of wood being glued together). This is in line with the Madrid school of using double sets of wood - Ramirez lines the sides of their 1a models with cypress and Bernabe & Teodoro Perez of course use double sides on several of their top models.
This is a fantastic example from 1987. It has 4 cleats under the top supporting 2 cracks (both below the bridge), and other than playing wear in the finish - primarily in the top and back of neck (all being factored into the price), this guitar is in concert-ready condition. Being very loud and lively, this guitar is great fun to play, and the sound is characteristic of the Madrid style. It is focused, rich and quite expressive. The action and setup are comfortable, and the quality of materials is first-class. This is a tremendous value for anyone on a budget looking for a classic Madrid concert guitar from this great era of lutherie.