Smaro Gregoriadou

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Classical guitar - baroque model - scalloped frets

Image Guitar with movable back pedal, scalloped fingerboard (baroque model).



Learn more on the purpose and function of the scalloped frets!

The very unusual function and purpose of the scalloped fingerboard probably deserve an explanation here. In the case of a conventional guitar neck, when the left-hand finger presses a string in any of the frets, it also touches the wood of the neck; it thus transmits its heat to the wood and acts as a dampener for the inactive rear part of the string. This adds warmth, roundness, softness and mellowness to the sound, which are absolutely desirable, particularly for Spanish and romantic music. A scalloped fret, on the contrary, does not permit to the finger to touch the wood, similar to the strings of a harpsichord, which – following the monochord principle – are fastened between only two fixed points, the bridge and nut. This allows them to vibrate freely, without touching any other part of the soundboard -- yielding an extra-clear, brilliant, dry and distinct coloration and articulation, which are particularly relevant to the baroque timbre. 


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