Santos Hernandez is quickly joining the ranks of Torres and Hauser I in terms of collectibility and historical importance. Santos became a very established maker early in his career when he became known as the builder of the Manuel Ramirez guitar of 1912 that was owned and played by Segovia. Many others have played his instruments, including Regino Sainz de la Maza (for whom the Concierto de Aranjuez was written), Eduardo Abreu, and the Romero family among others. This particular guitar, built in 1919, is a gorgeous example of Santos’ work, and is one of the foundational instruments that has influenced Pepe Romero Jr.
Pepe was given this guitar as a gift early in his career by his father, who allowed him to choose one Santos from several in his collection. Pepe Jr. chose this instrument for its beautiful sound, warmth, clarity, and soulful voice. Although a cypress guitar... it was built at a time when no distinction was made between "classical" and "flamenco" - it's essentially a great "guitar" and can accommodate both styles of playing beautifully. This realization has profoundly influenced Pepe Jr.'s approach to guitar making. A quick look at the head shape and the shape of Pepe Jr.'s headstock is discernible as well.