Very rare – this guitar is a unique piece built by the master Andres Marin (Valencia) – Augustin Barrios had such an Andres Marin guitar!
The government of Paraguay has used a similar guitar as a model for the production of the 50.000 Guarani banknote on which Barrios and his guitar is shown (see last picture).
It is one of the most beautiful decorated Andres Marin guitar we have seen and surely the best preserved one.
Andrés Marin (active from 1880-1950) was one of the most renowned guitar makers in Valencia. He married the widow of Agustin Almonacid, who had a guitar factory on Calle Barcelona 17 and whose successor he became around 1882. The factory produced guitars, bandurrias, lutes, mandolins and a variety of other instruments.
In 1882 and 1883 Andrés Marin won gold medals for his exceptional guitar building skills and was awarded the title of best guitar maker in the world at the time.
This guitar is a masterpiece that was built by himself in finest handcraft. It can probably be dated to the time around 1900. The top is of fine spruce and the back and sides of rosewood. The scale length is 638 mm and the nut width 50 mm.
It has a very clean, clear and pure quality to the sound, a very strong fundamental with very controlled overtones, and a very natural, “woody” quality of sound, very stylish, refined and alluring. The rich, played-in quality of sound is something that can only be found in an instrument of this vintage. In the hands, it feels very expressive and responsive to the most subtle of changes in the players touch. The sound is absolutely magical from the bottom-end to the highest registers.
The guitar is in a lightly restored and well playable condition – the condition is actually amazing for a guitar of this age.