The guitar in El Salvador


Complete works for guitar by Carlos Payés

In recording process

Disc Comments

Néstor Benito and Pablo Sala (Argentine musician and luthier), are working on the project for this new album that has two objectives:

  • The dissemination of the integral work for guitar of the prestigious Salvadoran composer Carlos Payés, which includes works for guitar and the "Italian Concert" for guitar and orchestra, is part of the project "The guitar in Argentina and Latin America" that Néstor Benito directs from 1993, promoting important Argentine and Latin American composers and their little-known or unpublished guitar works among the international guitar community. 
  • The diffusion of two new models of ten string guitars that Pablo Sala has built especially for this project, incorporating important physical-acoustic innovations.

The recording and the technical direction are in charge of Pablo Sala.

Carlos Payés

The passionate music of Carlos Payés immerses us in a deep world of longings, of subtle feelings with great technical and melodic success. His work contains true romantic gems of guitar literature such as "El Adiós", "Lejanía", "Variaciones sobre una tema de Mozart" (from the opera Don Giovanni), "Galopa", "Toccata Criolla" or the "Salvadoran Songs" , among other. The "Italian Concert" for guitar and orchestra, composed in old style, consists of three movements, was premiered at the Third Music Festival of San Salvador in 1973, by the Spanish guitarist Renata Tarragó and the El Salvador Symphony Orchestra.

He was born in Zacatecoluca, El Salvador.

When he was twelve years old he studied guitar with his uncle Lolo Rodríguez and piano with his father. Later he moved to San Salvador where he met the music of Agustín Barrios "Mangoré", then studying with Cándido Morales and Roberto Bracamonte, direct disciples of Mangoré. In Spain he attended the José Tomás guitar course in Santiago de Compostela (1969). In Madrid he studied harmony and composition with Adelina Barrios. Parallel to his musical studies, in 1972 he graduated as a doctor at the National University of El Salvador. In 1973 he was under the tutelage of Paraguayan guitarist Sila Godoy and simultaneously studied harmony and instrumentation with Esteban Servellón in San Salvador.

In 1978 he was chosen as the Artist of the Year by the Salvadoran Authors Society.

He wrote works for piano, guitar and the "Italian Concert" for guitar and orchestra, premiered in San Salvador during the Third International Music Festival in 1973 with Renata Tarragó as soloist. Some of his works have been performed by important international guitarists such as Liona Boyd, Renata Tarragó, Carlos Barbosa-Lima, David Russel, William Orbaugh and Néstor Benito, among others.