Egyptian Oud

The First Guitar

oud-frontThe Moors dominated Southern Spain for many centuries. They were highly skilled string instrument musicians. The Oud, which sounds exactly the same as the guitar, was their premier instrument and still is today.


Silverino Franconette, a Spanish singer, along with a Spanish Oud player, transposed Arabic prayer chants into Spanish lyrical music. This was the beginning of flamenco. The Oud evolved into the five-string guitar. A Spanish priest, Vicente Espinel, added the sixth string to the guitar. Luigi Bocherini composed the first classical sonatas for the guitar to escape poverty. He died as a penniless beggar in the streets of Madrid. Fernando Sor, Francisco Tarrega and Andres Segovia continued this magical journey.