Sabicas' Barbero (Full Version)

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keith -> Sabicas' Barbero (May 27 2012 15:35:13)

aaron sent this to me this morning. this is THE barbero. i had the pleasure 1.5 years ago to play it--awesome guitar would be an understatement. dennis koster playing sabicas on sabicas'guitar was surreal. somehow i think god was working along side with barbero.

Ricardo -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 27 2012 20:25:26)

Cool video. The perfect guitar he said in everyway. I feel the action is kind of low and buzzy but the bone looks pretty high. Anyways thanks for sharing

ToddK -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 27 2012 21:55:20)

I have Brune's version of this guitar. (model 30-F) I've had it for 10 years now, and
i cant imagine ever wanting, or seeking out another guitar.

Traditional, or ultra modern, its perfect for everything.

Came close a couple of time to selling it while being so strapped for cash, but
just couldnt bring myself to let it go.

This guitar will most likely be with me for life. Its like family at this point.

Pgh_flamenco -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 27 2012 23:53:58)

You have to wonder why Sabicas gave it away. Interesting comment about the neck being set up like a Stratocaster--lol. What is the asking price is for this guitar? Does anyone know?

aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 2:31:22)

Hi Ricardo
The action is very low, the neck has a negative relief, which was definitely intentional and the saddle is quite low. Dennis, to his credit, only had a few hours with the guitar before the recording. At first he was kind of like, Jeez I wish you had set it up so it didn't buzz. Then after getting to know it again he said, well it buzzes but it sounds good through the buzzes and thats how I'm going to play it. A client of mine who is also a student of Dennis' has a Torres with a similar action and similar amount of buzzing if you play it with any cajones. And it sounds great when you play it that way.

I agree, you have to wonder. Could be that he felt he could get another without too much trouble or he felt that indebted to Zabal. It is unque in the Barberos I've seen and I think he really set the tone and response of this guitar personally. Not to say that it wasn't a great guitar to begin with, I think thats what makes great players gravitate towards any instrument...but that such things are very malleable and great players, such as Sabicas, can really influence a guitars's sound.

As to the price, it's strictly "make offer". The family of Dr. Schultz have charged me with doing the best I can and since it's an iconic instrument the normal indicators, such as the going rate of Barbero guitars aren't as much of a guide as they normally would be.

RTC -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 2:37:34)

Very informative.
I do not think this one is for sale, but Aaron Green website shows his flamencos starting at @ $7,500.00. Looks very nice


aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 2:52:34)

Thanks for the props as to my own guitars. In regards to the Barbero though, it is most definitely for sale. For the first time in almost 60 years I might add. I am honored to be representing it although it is a great desire of mine to see it stay local. If not, thats how it goes and I will miss her very much. Either way I hope to stay in touch. She's been in my possession for a few years now (babysitting for the family till they decided what they wanted to do) and I've enjoyed every second of it.

Pgh_flamenco -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 4:26:07)


As to the price, it's strictly "make offer". The family of Dr. Schultz have charged me with doing the best I can and since it's an iconic instrument the normal indicators, such as the going rate of Barbero guitars aren't as much of a guide as they normally would be.

Have you contacted any museums? Sometimes they can find a wealthy patron to buy a piece of history like this and donate it to the museum.

keith -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 9:52:21)

powerball is over $100 million and i am off this week to get a ticket and the barbero would be at the top of the list once the millions began rolling in.

aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 11:29:59)


I have thought about the Met in NYC. Since they have Segovia's Hauser it might be a nice counterpart. We're not in a hurry and will explore all avenues in time.

About 10 years ago or someone from the Smithsonian in DC approached Dr. Schultz about donating the guitar. He was seriously considering it, he and his wife went there and were treated to a very nice lunch. As it turns out the curator also played flamenco guitar. Then he got axed for embezzlement not long after that. Mrs. Schultz was not happy with the idea from the get go, she felt the guitar should go to someone who would play it.

If that powerball ticket comes we'll talk about a few guitars for you and subsidizing a guitar maker too while we're at it. :)

KMMI77 -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 11:30:22)


powerball is over $100 million and i am off this week to get a ticket and the barbero would be at the top of the list once the millions began rolling in.

It's probably better that i don't have lots of money. If i bought it and liked it, I would play it until eventually wearing it out. I never baby my guitars.

keith -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 15:00:03)

aaron--did i mentioned i just opened the world's first sabicas museum? donations are welcomed. [:)]

RTC -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 15:58:54)


You are welcome, do you have any videos of your Peg Head Flamenco?
If so can you please post a link?


Don Dionisio -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 28 2012 16:35:07)

That was f&$king amazing! Thanks for this great video.
Dennis Koster plays with such dynamic command-a rarity
in my opinion. He really understands Sabicas' music.
Who the f&$k cares about the buzzing-the instrument
and the music from the player were sublime.
Dennis A.

shaun -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 29 2012 0:21:08)

Sell it to a guitarist, not a collector or a museum. A guitar like that is meant to be played, not displayed.

aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 29 2012 2:09:30)

Here is a link with an online magazine that interviewed me a few years ago. Dennis Koster had a great live recording on his Bulerias, Homage de Carmen Amaya, which is featured there. If you check out Juanito Pascual, he has one of my blancas as well. He has some vids up on Youtube.

Here is the link to the interview

I am in the process of rebuilding my website, which is horribly out of date. There is a video recording that Dennis did on his blanca that I don't have yet but that will be featured.

Hi Shaun
I am sure one way or another this guitar will end up in the hands of someone who will play it. Even if it ends up in a museum it will most likely be available to those who wish to play it. I have a friend who donated a Fleta to the Met with the specific condition that it be available to those who wish to play it. Which is very cool IMO.

The guitar was willed to a family member who was very close to Bob. This person is a musician but not a guitarist. Not long after he passed I was asked to sell off his instruments. The guitar I made for him was given to Dennis as a token of all of our mutual friendship and love. He is the link to all of us. Bob also had an incredible Conde from the 60's that was simply he best I've ever seen from that shop. Monster guitar. He also had a great mid 80's Reyes. Both guitars he bought new. I sold them to a good client of mine. He had a fantastic Brune 25th anniversary model that I sold to a collector on the west coast.

The Barbero was a bit of a different story. The family member who now owns the guitar realized that this was a heavy burden in terms of care and such and asked me to babysit the guitar. So I did, for a few years. I felt it was getting to the point where I was ready to say enough and started to put together a plan for the guitar. I asked a good client of mine who is a great player and well off collector if he would mind taking on the guitar. I then approached the family member and said that I was ready to hand her off to the next caretaker if that was what they wanted. I did not suggest they sell, but simply let this person provide a good home for her. It was well understood that the guitar needed to be taken care of and played. Her new owner said that as much as it meant to them to have this connection to Bob, it was not something that they felt up to and it was time to put it out there and find a new and permanent home for the guitar.

So this guitar is a dear old friend to me. I have known her for many years and studied it, communed with it and cherished her. I have learned a lot and it is due to this guitar that I build the kind of blancas that I do. I have been her caretaker for a few years and while it's been a great pleasure it has not been without some anxiety. I am most interested though in continuing to have her in my life and it is my job now to find a new home for her. The new owner understands all this but in the end, would like to realize the financial opportunity that this guitar represents. I can't say I blame them. I think anyone of us would want the same esp. if we found ourselves in possession of something of value that was not, in and of itself, near and dear to us. Again, the new owner is family but not a guitarist.

I am sure though whoever gets this guitar will do so because it means something to them. I just hope they are close by.


aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 29 2012 2:29:22)

Oh yes, Keith I was unaware of this new ventue. Have you director acquisitions contact me.:)

Don Dennis

Glad you liked it! The buzzing is pretty much an intention aspect of how it is set up. The phrase RE Brune used was "rajo" and it is muy flamenco to be sure. I like it myself, the actual integrity of it's sound is unaffected by that. It's like a dirty martini.

RTC -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 29 2012 2:45:12)

I listen to Juan Pascual's Viaje, he is a talented player and a joy to listen too. The guitar was very nice.


keith -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 29 2012 2:48:21)

in march i had the opportunity to see dennis koster and juan pasqual play live--each playing one of aaron's creations. it was great to hear world class guitarists play his guitar--and appreciated what those guitars sounded like when played by masters. it is very apparent to my ears that baby sitting the barbero has payed off in the development of aaron's guitars. his negras are really awesome as well.

i have had the honor of being friends with aaron for about 9 years and have the privelege of occasionally playing his guitars over the years and witness his evolution as a luthier. to me, an aaron green blanca with pegs is my holy grail.

interestingly, tomorrow my goal in my rehab from back surgery last friday is to walk to the coffe/pastry shop just below where aaron once had his shop. round trip it should be about 3/4 of a mile. i hope the pastries there are half as good as his guitars.

aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 29 2012 12:23:02)

Hope you get better soon Keith. It's a nice enough cafe, just be sure to get a couch space, much more comfy.

Patrick -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 29 2012 18:38:57)

I can most assuredly say the Barbero in Aaron’s possession has not gone to waist. I have played and owned Aaron’s guitars pretty much from the beginning of his flamenco building ventures and can say without reservation, they just keep getting better and better.

I currently play an exceptional Brazilian negra of Aaron’s that I will put up against any guitar I have ever owned or played. I think the unique aspect of Aaron having full access to the Barbero is his ability to instantly compare his guitars against one of the finest instrument ever built.

What’s interesting though is how Aaron has learned to let go of some of the past, while still holding on. I know that sounds hokey, but my negra has a great contemporary cleanliness to it, yet still some of the rawness of the old Barbero. We learn from our past.

aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (May 30 2012 13:53:31)

Thanks for that Patrick, you made my day and the check is in the mail!:)

All the best amigo


Guest -> [Deleted] (Jun. 5 2012 0:42:55)

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aarongreen -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (Jun. 5 2012 0:56:18)

In all fairness to Dennis, he had a few hours with the guitar and it is set up totally opposite of how he likes his guitars. He started playing it to keep it from buzzing and then said to hell with it, it sounds great buzzing and then the dynamic range that the guitar offers is hard to resist. There are other recordings he did with the guitar, including Sabicas' segurias with the trumpets and drums etc. That shows a different side of the guitar and of Dennis.

If you find yourself in NYC, do yourself a favor and take a lesson with Dennis, he is one of the most knowledgeable musicians I know. He practically lives in Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center and hears in a week what I hear in a year, concert wise. I'm not kidding, he and his lady spend all their money on going to concerts, opera, ballet, etc. They are forces of nature. He is also a very generous teacher.

Insofar as your offer, I think your nuts are safe. I am sure Grisha would kill it on this guitar though. Those who have tried it have loved it.

rombsix -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (Jun. 5 2012 0:59:29)


Very informative video, loved it!! I'd like to make a starting offer: my left nut.

But in all seriousness, that is truly an impressive instrument. And the combination of that instrument with Sabicas' touch really was an extraordinary pairing. And what an album those two put together.

I think Dennis K. really shined in some falsetas and sounded very close to Sabicas. His control of the tremolo section was impressive. It shows he studied with Sabicas. But honestly, in several parts he left me wanting more. He hit some of the basses way too hard (aside from buzzing) and the rasgueados could have been a little better.

You should set up a date with our friend Grisha and this marvelous instrument. I would pay good money to see this in person. Starting offer: my right nut. (Sorry I had to do it!!! )

You're going to end up castrated, Lionel, because of this guitar.

Guest -> [Deleted] (Jun. 5 2012 1:06:42)

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RTC -> RE: Sabicas' Barbero (Jun. 5 2012 2:59:11)

Mine belong to my wife, and she told me no bargaining with the family jewels. I wonder if she meant it for cases like this?

Sorry got to run and finish the dishes before she comes back in, I hope she understands that I had nothing to do with the dog eating the cord to the iron!

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