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Sicilian gypsy folk guitar

17810121322

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  • ChrisMartinChrisMartin Shellharbour NSW Australia✭✭ Di Mauro x2, Petrarca, Genovesi, Burns, Kremona Zornitsa & Paul Beuscher resonator.
    Posts: 959

    Some good pickin' there from Eric. Yes, the last link has him playing his two Daniel Stark guitars, the 'Jazz Fusion' and then the 'Baritone' which made me wonder if we need a discussion on here about Baritone guitars and if they have a place in Gypsy Jazz; has anyone tried it yet?

    But the other fancy one he is playing some blues on and talking about Taj Mahal is a Kremona, a model sometimes called the Zornitsa which was made in Bulgaria probably sometime between the 1960s and '70s. This is interesting as I had not seen any evidence of anyone outside of the former Soviet states using one except Ali Farka Toure. He is from Mali on the west coast of Africa and often cited as a link back to the origins of the blues. He is probably best known in the west for his recording with Ry Cooder back in the '80s. I have no idea how a Bulgarian guitar found its way to Mali or if there were any trade links but it seems not many made it out into the free world. Eric goes on there to talk about other players from Mali so I wonder if he has played with Ali and that is how he came across the Kremona.

    Anyway, although I sold on the really bling one I still have the plainer version and yes, it does have a great ringing sound ideal for attempting some Reverend Gary Davis.

    I think I posted a couple of photos on here a while back but here is another and one of an Ali Farka Toure LP cover.

    And apologies for the diversion but there is nothing Sicilian here.


    BucoWillieAndyW
  • ChrisMartinChrisMartin Shellharbour NSW Australia✭✭ Di Mauro x2, Petrarca, Genovesi, Burns, Kremona Zornitsa & Paul Beuscher resonator.
    Posts: 959

    Should I be starting a new thread for non-Sicilian but just as interesting unusual oddities?

    AndyW
  • WillieWillie HamburgNew
    Posts: 840

    Yes, I confused the eastern designs with the sicilian ones. Should always take the time and scroll around the forum before playing the smart guy.

    But to really contribute something: I just read in a german Wikipedia article, that being in Sofia, Bulgaria, because of playing a festval, Ali Farka Touré bought his first own guitar on April 21 in 1968. (Mali has been kind of a socialisf state in the 60ies, so there were connections behind the "iron curtain".)

    https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ali_Farka_Tour%C3%A9

    BucoChrisMartinAndyWBillDaCostaWilliams
  • ChrisMartinChrisMartin Shellharbour NSW Australia✭✭ Di Mauro x2, Petrarca, Genovesi, Burns, Kremona Zornitsa & Paul Beuscher resonator.
    Posts: 959

    Wow, thanks for posting that, so that explains it all. What a small world eh?

    WillieAndyW
  • AndyWAndyW Glasgow Scotland UK✭✭✭ Clarinets & Saxes- Selmer, Conn, Buescher, Leblanc et.al. // Guitars: Gerome, Caponnetto, Napoli, Musicalia, Bucolo, Sanchez et. al.
    edited October 2021 Posts: 603

    A couple of pics "borrowed" from the Instagram page of Sicilian guitarist & collector/dealer Ivan Rinaldi - his instagram is full of lovely vintage Sicilian guitars, including a few nice videos with audio of these guitars in action:

    (nice to see/hear some Gypsy jazz being played in the city of Catania , too)

    www.instagram.com/oldguitars.eu/

    This has many of the hallmarks of a Caponnetto, but that label looks like Antonino Napoli !?!?


    An "Agatino Patane", shown with a (miniature) Sicilian Carrettu


    Check out Ivan's instagram & facebook pages, his music, and his shop.


    -A-

    WillieBucorudolfochrist
  • AndyWAndyW Glasgow Scotland UK✭✭✭ Clarinets & Saxes- Selmer, Conn, Buescher, Leblanc et.al. // Guitars: Gerome, Caponnetto, Napoli, Musicalia, Bucolo, Sanchez et. al.
    Posts: 603

    While we're talking Instagram, we should probably mention the page of forum-member @rabbitweir , who started this whole thread ! - his instagram is www.instagram.com/weir.adam/ - some lovely guitar restoration work, including a few "Sicilian gypsy folk guitar" beauties.

    Buco
  • ChrisMartinChrisMartin Shellharbour NSW Australia✭✭ Di Mauro x2, Petrarca, Genovesi, Burns, Kremona Zornitsa & Paul Beuscher resonator.
    Posts: 959

    A couple of beauties there! Surprising to find the top one does have a Napoli label and yet fits exactly the same profile as the Caponetto. Apart from the obvious body shape and the scroll headstock, the unusual shape where the cutaway joins the heel is the same too. I can only guess one worked with or for the other, or they were close enough to share moulds and designs?

    Strange too that the top one has a French Delaruelle 'diamond' tailpiece, obviously such hardware often gets swapped around or replaced down the years but if that guitar has stayed in Sicily we would expect to see something from the more normal local suppliers. Or could this indicate that Delaruelle had contacts to distribute his hardware in Sicily, so far we have only seen one-way traffic to France, not the other way.

    I was not able to check the Rinaldi link, it seems the whole Instagram/Facebook system has crashed today but he does sell on Reverb, he currently has a nice Olivieri on there, not cheap though:

    A quick check on his feedback indicates he has sold a few Olivieri instruments; could this mean that while they are considered one of the rarer Sicilian names maybe they were more popular in the home market while the obvious names like Carmelo concentrated on exports?

    The more you put on here, the more it fires my curiosity about the Sicilian luthiers. Flying between UK and Australia is a bore and I usually like to find new ways to break the trip, I wonder if next time (post-Covid) a stopover in Sicily might be possible.

    Buco
  • ChrisMartinChrisMartin Shellharbour NSW Australia✭✭ Di Mauro x2, Petrarca, Genovesi, Burns, Kremona Zornitsa & Paul Beuscher resonator.
    edited October 2021 Posts: 959

    Another luthier from Catania was D. Caccetta Abate. Not very prolific if the number of guitars around now is any guide but this one just turned up on Reverb (with name misspelled). Minimalist on decoration but optimist on price we can at least file it under rare Sicilian.


    MichaelHorowitzAndyW
  • AndyWAndyW Glasgow Scotland UK✭✭✭ Clarinets & Saxes- Selmer, Conn, Buescher, Leblanc et.al. // Guitars: Gerome, Caponnetto, Napoli, Musicalia, Bucolo, Sanchez et. al.
    edited October 2021 Posts: 603

    The seller is a tasty guitarist from Northern Sicily called Carlo Parafioriti, he plays in a Sicilian Gypsy Jazz combo called "Umanouche" with the aforementioned Ivan Rinaldi - there are some swinging videos of that band on youtube / facebook.

    Here's Carlo playing the Abbate / Abate , with its newly installed piezzo pickup


    For me, it's a shame the restorer has painted over / removed the decorative pickguard & rosette -

    Of course, I suspect this "Abate" was made by Stefano Caponnetto - here's two examples of the Caponnetto lookalikes: - note the slight variations in fingerboard inlays, dot markers & tailpieces: although I do see, perhaps a difference at the neck-body joint, I reckon both of these are the same guitar as the one Carlo's selling.

    [ I think I may have read that the eagle inlay, a near-trademark of Caponnetto, was dropped soon after the war due to its unfortunate political connotations ]

    the Guitar in the second picture was for sale near Milan at €200 for weeks and weeks with no buyer, it's no longer listed though. That's more my kinda price ;-)

    WillieBuco
  • ChrisMartinChrisMartin Shellharbour NSW Australia✭✭ Di Mauro x2, Petrarca, Genovesi, Burns, Kremona Zornitsa & Paul Beuscher resonator.
    Posts: 959

    Yes, I watched the Yotube link in the ad, impressed by some tasty playing but I had no idea of the connection with Rinaldi; I will now go in search of Umanouche. I ignored his spelling with two bs, the label clearly has Abate with one b.

    So, we wonder again, was Abate, like some of these lesser known names just a retailer or wholesale merchant who had guitars made by the big guys, Stefano Caponetto and maybe Carmelo? You have probably done more research than I and there is little info on Fetishguitars.com but we know of some who were definitely luthiers or had manufacturing capability, and then others who were just names on labels like Sonora or Marius. There seems to be a lot more to be identified. I wonder if this has been at least investigated or written about in Italian, do you have any contacts over there? After my recent work on the Alfa Romeo book I am not afraid of learning the lingo!

    Meanwhile, those two Caponettos above are sweet, and the latter unsold at €200 is definitely 'one that got away'.

    So here is a question: do you know how the fancy inlays were made? Hand cut individual pieces of plastic (celluloid?) for each one or could there have been some quicker, cheaper, way of stamping them out? The reason I ask is that as you mention above it is a shame the inlays on the Abate guitar have been altered and I have come across some where the original pieces are missing altogether. I had already been thinking this might be a good excuse to experiment with 3D printing.

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