I have waited until now to write back to you about my 2 new Bellucci guitars. I have found that new guitars change so much in the first month that it is not reasonable or fair to assess them until after then – and as you say, they go on improving for at least the next year.
So first the flamenco blanca:
This arrived in early December. The finish is perfect, the mother of pearl rosette gives a beautiful contrast to the blond wood and ebony trim.
I changed the strings to Hannabach Flamenco after a few days, and kept the guitar out of its case, on a stand. I changed the saddle over to the flamenco one (many thanks for the thoughtfulness of including both saddles).
What has amazed me, is not only do I have the penetrating sound of the flamenco guitar ( the “breaking glass” effect), but the depth of tone of a much heavier instrument – truly 2 instruments in one. Congratulations!
So to the Brazilian Rosewood:
This arrived just after I left for Canada for Christmas, so I left instructions in the office to take it out of its case and put it on a stand ( the office is centrally heated, but Cornwall has a steady humidity level of just under 60% - ideal).
So when I came back 3 weeks later, it was well and truly acclimatized!
So looks – what can I say that would do justice to the looks – the beautiful 23 year old figured rosewood and all its colors, the gorgeous inlay on the beveled African ebony fingerboard, the So smooth Gotoh machine heads with ivoroid buttons, the figured armrest………
So how does it sound? It’s sound has changed more than any guitar I have had. I have now changed the strings for D’Addario Composites, High Tension, Lightly polished. These give a bright tone, but with the sweet tone of the guitar, not over-bright. The sound just gets sweeter and sweeter, beautiful liquid trebles and a base that resonates on and on. It is such an easy guitar to play. I know you are not too fond of Spanish guitars, but my Manuel Contreras Double Top Cedar is not difficult to play, but this is so much easier. Also it is great to have 2 totally different toned superb guitars – the Contreras with its brooding Spanish tones, and the new guitar with such pure tones across the whole fingerboard – if I had to say which music it favoured, I would say South American, as it responds so quickly and brightly to the rhythms.
You should be so proud of having produced these beautiful instruments for their owners to strive to make music beautiful enough to match the instruments.
Everyone still remarks on the finish of the rosewood guitar that I bought from you in 2004, but these instruments are in a different league when it comes to the sound they produce (also the finish is better, even though it was of such a high standard before).
Very many thanks
Peter Crane FCA, UK, Feb 2008
Just thought I would write and say a big thank you for my beautiful guitar. I have had it for a few weeks now and thought I would play it a lot before I made any comments.
It is not only great to look at, it sounds wonderful and every day it sound better! Please thank your builders on my behalf for a great guitar. I love the warm sound of the cedar top and its a great compliment to the spruce top I have. I took it into my teacher and she loves it too, and she is very hard to please. Thanks again for a wonderful instrument, it is everything you promised.
Paul Blakeley, Canada, Feb 2008
The baby is here!! She's as beautiful and elegant like a Lady at a reception. The sound is beautiful and deep like a sky with a million stars and at every note I can smell Spring in the air and an overwhelming sensation to be holding on to someone whispering sweet things in your ears...She's FANTASTIC. Thank you dar friend. I owe you for life. Love
Rosita, Italy, Feb. 2008
I can not express my appreciation for the beautiful instrument your Luthier has made. It is absolutely exquisite. It was all I hope for and more. Having a knowledge that guitars tonally improve with age I know with time the sound will even be better, but I don't know how it could sound any better than it does now. The vibrato is lush, nuance comes forth so easily, the color range is wide and this all combines with an ease of playing that is unsurpassed at this price. Very Nice! It is everything that a Classical guitar should be, light, clear but sweet, robust in the low end, loud, easy to handle, even and balanced between registers, good sustain, singing trebles, easy to play and a joy to express on. In the U.S. this guitar would have cost me in the 7 to 10 thousand dollar range. It is absolutely gorgeous. Words can not express my appreciation. I will cherish this gift always. Please express my thanks to your luthier. He is a great builder. Thank you my friend.
Gary Hunter, USA, February 15th, 2007
I wanted you to know I tuned up the Macassar Ebony last night and played for hours. Intonation is very good, playability is great and tone is outstanding ! I have to say this guitar has more sustain than any classical I have in my stable. I am truly pleased.
Michael, USA Feb. 2008
I visit your website frequently. I just cant keep my eyes off of your guitars. If I were a millionaire, I would be a Belluci guitar collector. I bought your 1st built flamenco guitar. The tonal qualities are superb and just keep getting better. Everybody that sees it and hears it just stand there in awe. I cant help but laugh. It just tickles me. I always recommend your website. The absolute best around and I think I have seen them all. You are a genius.
Pete Delozier from Ca USA, Feb. 2008
I received the guitar in good order this past Tuesday. I love the appearance and above all, the sound is wonderful! I am very pleased with the intonation... it is perfect. For me that is the key to a good instrument so the notes are never off. Believe it or not many guitars do not have perfect intonation especially acoustic and classical. The sound is robust, balanced and warm. I'm sure it will sound better and better. With the perfect intonation, the sound is true. This is what I hoped that you would achieve and you were able to do it. Bravo. This guitar is a concert guitar. The overall package of sound and appearance is very appealing. The playability is also very good. I have experience with guitars, knowledge of woods and a good ear for sound. Some people are not that discerning about things and they have more disposable resources to play with. Thank you again.
Michael, USA, Feb. 2008
I received the guitar and it is a beautiful work of art. Thank you for the great job and I will spread you name.
James Weaver, USA, Feb. 2008
My guitarra flamenca has arrived in good condition! Great package! What a beautiful guitar this is! As I hoped, it is a real Flamenca. Thinner body, very low action, powerful, also the strings above the top have good distance. That is a must for the flamenco player for easy playing the "Golpe". I
do play classical and flamenco-guitar. She weighs like a feather which is good as I play often on the classical flamenco way: the guitar rests on my right thigh, sitting straight on a chair.
The sound is already developing the right way. What a difference just overnight! This guitar is one of a kind and has no equal in Europe. I will also post this guitar also on my website.
Renato, I can say that this year 2008 has started good for me. Please also send my compliments to your master-luthiers. I've experienced everything as very pleasant and unique. My claim is always that there are much more good people in the world than bad ones.
Simon Nieboer, The netherlands, Jan 2008
My guitar has arrived safely and is now adjusting to the climatic shock of a British winter. I have carefully read your advice and will take great care of her.
It looks so beautiful and I have spent a lot of time just looking at the result your craftsmen have achieved. I have examined it in detail and it is perfect.I first saw the photographs that you posted on the website on the 23rd of November and hoped it was to be mine. The Thai Burl violin tailpiece and bridge was an inspiration and also such a nice surprise.
Many thanks to you and please tell your craftsmen that their work is greatly appreciated,
My best wishes to you all for Christmas and the New Year,
Keith, Miller, UK, Dec, 2007
Last Friday I visited my good friend the HeadMaster and the guitarist of the Community Music school in Stockholm showing my brand new Belluci guitar.
My impression from the Bellucci guitar has been confirmed by someone that I trust someone who is educated on classic guitar and has owned different guitars Ramirez etc and who is a very skilled player.
We compared Bellucci with the guitar he is playing at present a Manuel Rodriguez class A signed by MR made in Spain. That particular guitar would retail for more then 6.000 dollars in Sweden.
My lady showed herself on the best side. She is brilliant, the design is excellent the wood work is impressing and well carried out. The sound is absolutley outstanding!
Kenneth, Ankarsrum, Sweden, Nov. 2007
I received the baby today ! My levels of anxiety dropped when I saw how well protected she was prepared for travel.. When I lifted the lid of the case, I realized that my expectations had been surpassed greatly; the pictures on the website are very beautiful but she's so much more beautiful and refined in person. Great finish and attention to detail !
After the initial emotions begun to dissipate, I slowly tuned her and realized that the sound is directly proportional to the beauty. I NEVER heard so deep sounding basses (Brazilian rosewood stays up to the player's expectations) ; The trebles have a great tone and I know that with a little playing they will open up just beautiful... I like the neck because it is slim and makes playing a lot easier. The radius makes everything a lot more pleasurable for the left hand.
My compliments and a big HUG
Luca Moretti, Porza, Switzerland September 24, 2007
And better everyday.
Thanks again for such a beautiful masterpiece and I look forward to owning another.
Mike Hudkins, Orlando, Florida September 24th, 2007
I just want to let you know that my cutaway is coming of age. The tone is fantastic.
Moreover, your prediction that the tone quality would take a giant leap after 6 months or so is definately in effect. Anyway, I hope you are doing well. I still visit your website to see what's new. It is nice that you are commited to update your site as needed.
take care, and thanks for selling me a great Guitar,
Antonio Tudisco, CA, USA, September 2007
The sound of my Bellucci guitar has really changed a lot this past year. Having never had a custom guitar before, I had my doubts in the beginning that the sound would change yet it has, and for the better. As a classical guitarist progresses in their playing the quality and production of sound becomes important and appartent. There are some pieces of music that if played on a good sounding guitar can highen awarness, can stir emotion. A point where guitar and player begin to communicate. Mr. Bellucci's guitars are among those that have this quality of sound. Just remeber, with any custom made guitar, it's a growing process in that the guitar needs time to change (dry, bend, etc...). When you buy one I hope your experience will be as rewarding as mines.
Xuan , Fuzhou,China, August 2007