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Here a biography wrote by Raya Pardo himself which you can find in the book – The Granada Guitar Makers School published in 2015 (page112) who Alberto Cuéllar –Founder of Madera Guitars- is its main author –
Antonio Raya Pardo (1950) is one of the most representative of Granada’s guitar- makers and has received widespread international recognition for his work. In his contribution to this book he wrote:
“I was born in Huelma, a village belonging to the province of Jaén. When I was fourteen years old, my parents decided to come and live in Granada, where I did various jobs and where I met my wife, Pilar Ferrer, the granddaughter of Don Eduardo Ferrer. This is one of the reasons why I decided to become a luthier, or as we say around here a guitarrero, which I suppose means the same although it sounds different, it is more what we are, what we feel. In 1972 I joined José López Bellido’s workshop as an apprentice. I wasn’t there for long and I learned only the most basic aspects of this profession. A year later in 1973 I decided to go it alone. This was when my apprenticeship really began and when I realized what a long way I still had to go. But I had two important things on my side. I was very young and very keen. So I had to come to terms with the fact that I had to start again from scratch, investigating and searching for the sound I had in mind. You make many mistakes on this quest but you also gain enormous experience.
Over the years I have travelled to several countries such as the United States, Japan and China, and I have seen guitars made by the best guitar-builders in history. To see these instruments, to be able to play them and hear the sound they make has been amazingly useful. This is when you discover something that is very difficult to see and to illustrate what I mean perhaps I can borrow a quote from someone else, which rings particularly true in this profession: ‘You don’t have to do extraordinary things to be successful. You have to do simple things, but you have to do them extraordinarily well’”.