Hans Raab 1908; fifteen string ”kontragitarre”

This is a prime sample of the Viennese/German guitar evolution from the late 19th and early 20th century. In Vienna, Stauffer and Scherzer developed guitars with extra bass strings already in the 1830s. Composers like Mertz and Dubetz (who played ten string guitars), Regondi (who played an eight string Stauffer), Pavlistchev (who played a twelve string guitar) and many others composed for guitars with extended bass range. In the second half of the 19th century, guitars with more than thirteen strings became very popular in folk style ensembles (so called Schrammelmusik) who played tyrolean music.

Hans Raab was active as a luthier during the late 19th and early 20th century. He was the main competitor of Hermann Hauser I, and some even claim that Raab’s instruments were of even higher quality. This guitar has a wonderful penetrating treble register with lot of sustai, very typical of the Viennese tradition. It sounds very good and can be used for both Mertz and his contemporaries as well as transcriptions of baroque lute music (for example Bach can be played without any changes of the musical structure).

The guitar has had several cracks during its life time but everything is fixed very professionally and it is now in perfect playing condition.

Top: spruce

Back and sides: flamed maple

Scale: 62,5 cm

Nut width: 4 cm

Stauffer type tuners and adjustable neck.

Condition: many repaired cracks but expertely made and now in perfect playing condition.

Price: 2500 Euro

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