It is one of the few musical instruments that still uses watch-key or Preston tuners. It is iconically associated with the musical genre known as Fado, and is now an icon for anything Portuguese. Portuguese people’s love for the cittern and other musical instruments. Alcobaça Monastery, depicts in detail the fado PDF ancestor of the Portuguese guitar.
Författare: Andrzej Stasiuk.
Während seiner Fahrten durch Albanien hört Stasiuk den Fado. Melancholie und sanfter Trotz dieser Musik sind auch den 24 kurzen erzählerischen Meditationen eigen, die thematisch wie geographisch einen weiten Bogen schlagen: von Südpolen bis Montenegro, vom Blick durchs Vergrößerungsglas auf eine alte Karte, die bosnische Dörfer verzeichnet, bis zu den Reflexionen über die neue Mobilität als Flucht aus der eigenen Geschichte, dem eigenen Leben. „Gibt es eine bessere Metapher für die Reise als eine brüchige Landkarte? Gibt es eine noblere Art der Reise als die auf den Spuren eines Schriftstellers, dessen Bücher man bewundert? So eine Reise ist eine Pilgerfahrt. Und die Pilgerfahrt ist ja nichts anderes als die ältere Schwester der Reise als solcher. Reisen heißt leben. Jedenfalls doppelt, dreifach, mehrfach leben.“
In the same period there are other evidence to the use of the cittern alluding to a repertoire of sonatas, minuets, etc. English“ guitar made its appearance in Portugal. By 1786 those made by Simpson, an English luthier, became highly popular, and it was noted that he could also provide reliable nickel-silver strings. The last detailed reference to the cítara appeared in 1858 in J. Fètis‘ book The Music Made Easy. Gradually the Simpson design was transformed by Portuguese luthiers, with a wider body, longer scale length, and a wider fingerboard, made more manageable by using a large radius, rather than a flat fingerboard.
Two distinct Portuguese guitar models are built: the Lisboa model and the Coimbra model. Overall, the Coimbra model is of simpler construction than the Lisboa model. The technique employed to play the Portuguese guitar is what is historically called dedilho. This technique comprises playing solely with the thumb and the index fingers and it was inspired by the technique used to play „viola da Terra da Terceira“.
On the Portuguese guitar the strings are picked with the corner of the fingernails, avoiding contact of the flesh with the strings. The unused fingers of the picking hand rest below the strings, on the soundboard. Technique basics are the fado maior, fado menor and fado Mouraria. Then there are traditional virtuosic pieces – the fado Lopes, and Variaçoes in Dm, Am, Em and Bm. In accompanying fado the guitarra plays the introduction, traditionally based on the second half of the vocal melody, then alternates between the techniques described above and short expressive phrases answering the fadista’s phrases. In faster fados the guitarra often improvises virtuosically throughout, including solos.
A good guitarrista should know at least a hundred of the over two hundred standard fados in any key requested by the fadista. Armandinho, born in 1891, became one of the most influential guitar players in Lisbon, leaving a vast repertoire of variations and fados behind. Many leading guitarristas in Lisboa – Mario Pacheco, Luis Guerreiro, Jose Manuel Neto, Henrique Leitão, Bruno Chaveiro, Paulo de Castro, Ricardo Martins and Custodio Castelo – now use Oscar Cardoso guitarras, which feature the extraordinary innovation of a cutaway in the back of the guitarra, and a Coimbra string length but with Lisboa tuning. The virtuosity of these artists has changed the sound of fado radically, and their speed is extraordinary. The Portuguese guitar played a small role in Celtic and western folk music following the folk revival. In the 1970s, Andy Irvine of the band Planxty played a modified Portuguese guitar.
Several jazz musicians have also recorded with the Portuguese guitar, including Brad Shepik. The Portuguese guitar features prominently on Sun Kil Moon’s debut album Ghosts Of The Great Highway. There are many Portuguese guitar makers still building guitars, according to traditional craftsmanship. Many families have passed on their knowledge for generations. Antonio Pinto de Carvalho’s APC luthiery is one of the largest in Europe, and produces thousands of guitarra and cavaquinho related stringed instruments. The tuning chiefly employed on the Portuguese guitar was historically called afinação do fado or afinação do fado corrido. It was probably developed in the early 19th century, as it was already largely adopted by Lisbon’s fadistas by the mid-century.
E instead of C, as this simplified the change between the fado tuning for players who used both. The Portuguese Guitar Chord Bible: Lisboa Tuning 1,728 Chords. 1: Bases para a Guitarra de Coimbra. The Portuguese Guitar: History and Transformation of an Instrument Associated with Fado“.