Posted on June 22, 2020April 13, 2023 by Dale Phillips Brazilian Guitar Makers Brazilian Guitar Makers by Roberto Gomes Originally published in American Lutherie #33, 1993 and Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume Three, 2004 The guitar has been the main musical instrument in Brazil since it was brought by the Portuguese colonizers centuries ago. In those times, Baroque guitars were the most common string instruments. They had five courses of gut or wire strings. Since then it hasn’t changed much, as we can see in the “Brazilian viola” which is used for a kind of Brazilian country music called musica sertaneja (countryside music). The shape of the soundbox of this viola today resembles more a small classic guitar. Unfortunately there are very few records of those times, making it difficult to make a better study of those guitars and their makers. It’s known that most of the instruments were made in Portugal, Italy, and France. The first decade of this century brought three immigrant families from Italy: the Gianninis, the DiGiorgios, and the DelVecchios. These families were luthiers in their country of origin and later they founded the main Brazilian guitar factories which became the backbone of Brazilian-made guitars for nearly eighty years. They made mostly classic guitars and some violins, along with Brazilian violas. They also made mandolins, first with vaulted backs like lutes and later with flat backs, which are used to play choro music. Become A Member to Continue Reading This Article This article is part of our premium web content offered to Guild members. To view this and other web articles, join the Guild of American Luthiers. Members also receive 4 annual issues of American Lutherie and get discounts on products. For details, visit the membership page. If you are already a member, login for access or contact us to setup your account.