Circa. 2017. Beautiful and rare Pepe Romero Jr. ‘Grand Reserve’ Tenor Ukulele handcrafted by Pepe in San Diego, California.
Pepe Romero Biography
Pepe Romero Jr. was born into a family that lives the Spanish guitar. From his childhood Pepe loved the guitar. He grew up playing some of the world’s greatest guitars from the incredible collection of his father. Growing up surrounded by guitars made by Torres, Esteso, Santos Hernandez, Hauser, and Miguel Rodriguez set the standard for how a guitar should be made.
At 18 years old Pepe went to the workshop of Dake Traphagen to build a guitar. Upon completion of this guitar, Pepe decided to dedicate himself to being a builder. In 1997, Pepe was lucky enough to spend time in the workshop of Miguel Rodriguez shortly before he passed away. He moved on to study with and receive guidance from J.L. Romanillos, Manuel Contreras II, Yuris Zeltins and Edmund Blöchinger. Pepe and Blöchinger have become great friends and have made 2 guitars together.
Pepe is heavily influenced by the Rodriguez guitars. His style of building is very similar to Rodriguez. He is also inspired by the elegant look and beautiful sound of the guitars by Santos Hernandez and Domingo Esteso. As of spring 2017, Pepe has made over 275 guitars. Each one is hand crafted and built in the traditional spanish method. His guitars are in great demand by concert guitarists and collectors worldwide. He has a waiting list of about 2-3 years for new guitars. He has handcrafted a relatively small number of ukuleles in comparison to his guitars but they play beautifully and have a focus on tone, sustain, and projection.
This ukulele was handcrafted of spalted Mango wood face, back, and sides, Macassar Ebony wood fingerboard and Madagascar Rosewood bridge with a matching Madagascar Rosewood top and back binding and head plate. It also features a beautiful abalone rosette and a matching abalone position markers on 5, 7, 10, and 12. The instrument was built with a classical approach with a 12 fret joint to the body. Pepe used some of his finest materials for the Grand Reserve model. French polish. Gotoh 4:1 geared tuners for precise and quick tuning. Light indentations on the back of the neck. See photos.
The tone is something special with a round balanced low-end and bright lights. The uke also has exceptional power with great sustain and projection. A wonderful ukulele perfect for both the professional musician and the recreational ukulele player. ID#190059