2017 Francisco Barba SP/CY
|Back & Sides:
Of the same generation as Manuel Reyes and Gerundino Fernandez, Francisco Barba is considered one of the top constructors of flamenco guitars in Spain. He is also the best-known and reputable builder not just in Seville, but arguably in all of the region of Andalucia where his guitars have been played by many of the top guitarists of the region including Riqueni, Manolo Franco, Nino de Pura and many others.
What one first notices when looking at this blanca is how visually stunning it is. It features many unique and lovely details starting with the rosette - which includes a star-shaped mosaic design found in much of the old Moorish tile work in Seville and other neighboring Andalucian towns - indeed this was also a design favored greatly by another of southern Spain's great workshops - that of Miguel Rodriguez in Cordoba. The subtle red and black patterning on either side of the rosette is matched in the top purfling which compliments the immediately identifiable and bold headshape. A very striking look overall.
Tone is fat and balanced with a lot of punch, volume and flamenco edge. In other words - a very powerful and lively Andalusian flamenco guitar by every measure. Playability is a breeze - it has an easy and sleek neck with low flamenco action and just the right amount of "sizzle" which adds to the authentic southern Spanish flamenco sound. This is a top concert instrument for any professional flamenco setting - whether on stage or in studio. Although second-hand, the guitar is in dead-mint, brand-new condition with no signs of prior use.