Los Romeros

Royal Family of the Spanish Guitar

The fascinante biography of a musical dynasty

Spanish émigré guitarist Celedonio Romero gave his American debut performance on a June evening in 1958. In the sixty years since, the Romero Family—Celedonio, his wife Angelita, sons Celín, Pepe, and Angel, as well as grandsons Celino and Lito—have become preeminent in the world of Spanish flamenco and classical guitar in the United States.

Walter Aaron Clark's in-depth research and unprecedented access to his subjects have produced the consummate biography of the Romero family. Clark examines the full story of their genius for making music, from their outsider's struggle to gain respect for the Spanish guitar to the ins and outs of making a living as musicians. As he shows, their concerts and recordings, behind-the-scenes musical careers, and teaching have reshaped their instrument's very history. At the same time, the Romeros have organized festivals and encouraged leading composers to write works for guitar as part of a tireless, lifelong effort to promote the guitar and expand its repertoire.

Entertaining and intimate, Los Romeros opens up the personal world and unfettered artistry of one family and its tremendous influence on American musical culture.

"For the protraction of my musical education and the great pleasure of their company, I am truly grateful to the family Romero."--Sir Neville Marriner, from the foreword

"To see Los Romeros play is to witness them making love to an instrument that, in their hands, is transformed into the most beautiful human voice."--Jesús López Cobos, from the foreword

Publication of this book is supported by the Donna Cardamone Jackson Endowment of the American Musicological Society, funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and by the University of California, Riverside.

Walter Aaron Clark is Distinguished Professor of Musicology and the founder/director of the Center for Iberian and Latin American Music at the University of California, Riverside. His books include Isaac Albeniz: Portrait of a Romantic and Enrique Granados: Poet of the Piano. In 2016, King Felipe VI of Spain made him a Knight Commander of the Order of Isabel the Catholic.

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