Jack Douglas wrote: ↑
Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:18 pm
After reading your very interesting introduction on another post and listening to the pieces you included in the post I was intrigued that you played a Nicholas loannou, a maker I had never heard of! In your Bach Suite in E his guitar sounded (and your playing) like Velvet. However, I do belong to the ‘former owner of a Velazquez club’, but have never gotten to the front entrance of the Frederich or Fleta Club. And you sold them!!!!
Now that you’re returning from your intriguing spiral and redeveloping your relationship with the guitar again, I’m sure you’re discovering there are an amazing number of choices. So, would you care to share the name of your current instrument!
Again, thanks for sharing your music in your introduction post and enlightening us about Nicolás loannou!
Thanks for the kind words!
Yes, the instrument on which I played that Bach suite was, indeed, a Ioannou (though not the original one I had owned several years earlier). I still have that instrument — just opened the case after not having played since 1990 — and it's still in good shape except for the original ivory nut, which has cracked. The instrument is Brazilian rosewood and cedar top
As I mentioned in another post, prior to playing on Ioannou's guitars, I played a powerful (if somewhat dry sounding) Fleta (rosewood/cedar); before that, an outstanding Friedrich (rosewood/cedar); before that, a Velasquez (rosewood/spruce); and long before that, I played a mahogany/spruce instrument constructed by Manouk Papazian.
You're right about there being many choices today, more than I remember in 1970s-1980s. A colleague of mine at the American Institute of Guitar played an instrument made by Thomas Humphrey (who came by the AIG many times, so we all knew him); one block away on 56th Street, there was the guitar shop owned by Juan Orozco (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juan_Orozco
), who displayed many instruments by Ramirez, Kohno, Manzanero, Hauser, et al. I played a Kohno for a while but always felt it was metallic in sound; and I was never impressed enough with Ramirez to take the plunge and buy one: to me, Ramirez guitars had volume but sounded very "generic", without any individual character . . . then again, perhaps that was just my playing! Conversely, the instruments by the French craftsman, Daniel Friedrich, and the Greek master, Nicholas Ioannou, were unique, successfully combining a rounded tone with powerful projection.
Alas, I have no further information on Ioannou — his whereabouts or his instruments— as we lost touch by around 1988. As I mentioned in another post, he used to teach mathematics at a private prep school in Brooklyn, NY called "Adelphi Academy", so he might have a ".edu" email account with them. You might also try emailing Beverly Maher at The Guitar Salon in New York City. Her website is here:
I don't see any Ioannou instruments listed but she is now one of the major sellers of fine classical guitars, so she might have dealt with Nicholas in the past or she might know something about his present contact information. Good luck!