In the beginning of this year we were approached by Diego del Morao with an idea to release a limited-edition replica of his father’s favorite guitar. He referred to a guitar built by Felipe’s father and uncle, the Conde Hermanos, in 1972 for Moraíto Chico’s father Juan Morao. Juan Morao played this guitar for many years before he gave it to his son, and as Diego del Morao told us, his father never again separated from this guitar and composed most of his celebrated music on it and took it around the world during his brilliant career.
An old video of Moraito Chico’s father, Juan Morao playing the original guitar probably very recently built.
As soon as we received the guitar we got working on carefully studying all its features in order to reproduce it exactly as it was built back in the early 70’s. We selected the wood from a very special stock: German spruce for the top, Spanish cypress for the back and sides, Honduras cedar for the neck and ebony for the fret board. The headstock has a standard Media Luna shape but it was worked slightly differently more typical of the decade in which it was built. Since we lost the rosette that was originally used on this guitar we had to recreate it from scratch, measuring each segment individually to get it just right. The bridge also had certain peculiarities that had to be especially made to get the correct aesthetic. The original wooden pegs were changed for machine tuners in the 1990’s but we decided to go back to the original aesthetic and install the planetary wooden pegs to keep with the original ‘look’ but make sure that the guitar more adapted to modern tuning affinities. We also recreated the old and long lost label to go along with the new one signed by both Felipe and Diego del Morao. This was a particular feat of our digital team which employed some true digital artistry to get the label just right!
Moraíto Chico playing the original guitar at a Jerez festival.
Along with Diego del Morao we decided to build only 25 guitars of this limited edition. Diego is the proud owner of the serial Nº 1 and he tested it for the first time at the end of March this year, at which time we recorder a short soleá here at our studio. Needless to say, Diego was very happy with his new guitar and stressed how very close it was to the feel and sound of the original.
Diego del Morao playing the replica of his father’s guitat at our studio.
You can see the pictures of the old and the new guitar via this link along with all the technical details.
We will be officially presenting this guitar at the next week’s Frankfurt Musikmesse at our booth D-93, located at Hall 8.0.