The job of a guitar maker or constructor of instruments is beautiful: it takes time to gain the skill with the tool, to understand the wood, to carefully build and also to hear, that is, to achieve what the musician is looking for.
We are a family workshop that deeply respects professionals that are devoted to this wonderful job and that, with their good work, they can construct a fair competition that is able to encourage us all to evolve and adapt to new times.
Nevertheless, it is not the first time that a client comments us how bad he has been told about us by other trade colleague; they say we give bad services and a number of improprieties that are far from the fair competition we have been talking about. Luckily, many times these badly-informed clients could see for themselves that these accusations were not true, other times they have lost the opportunity to see it, because they didn’t dare to come. Recently a foreigner was about not to visit us out of fear, fortunately he did, he told us the story, he told us that our service had been exceptional and finally he discovered that we had more competitive prices than the ones he was given by the guitar maker that ensured the opposite.
As well as we respect our colleagues, and we allow our clients to have their own criteria and can compare by themselves, we take it for granted that we will receive the same treatment, but once and again we find that it is not precisely this way. It’s a pity. Those who speak badly about a colleague are only shooting themselves in the foot.
And the thing is that, according to good tongues, we can know more people with the things they say about the rest than with the things the other people say about them.
So far we have only talked about ourselves, but this is something that affects our trade as a whole. There are groups of guitar makers that, to stand out, proclaim themselves as the true and original representatives of this or that school, when actually they reached much more later and intend to discredit those who were its true origin. There are those who copy other people and claim they are the first to develop that idea that they are in fact copying. There are those that get hold of the rights of some historic guitar maker that had no descendants, preventing the implementation of any activity related to him without paying “toll” to the traders that made themselves the “owners” of his name. There are those who intend to delete the authorship of a work persistently assigning it to other person, and they enjoy credibility in spite of exhibiting themselves with a urinal on their heads. And it is widely known that: if you repeat a lie enough times it will end up becoming the truth for a lot of people. But it has been repeatedly proved that building a reality on lies ends up collapsing, sooner or later.
In the office of a teacher in a music conservatory, on her desk, there was a notice that stood out above the other objects there. It was a sentence by Ghandi that said: “It is not necessary to turn off the light on the other, to get ours shine”
The guitar world is highly contaminated by the bad faith of a few, and that harm us all. Us all. No doubt if we changed this mean practice for another healthier one based on respect to our colleagues, we would absolutely improve our professional environment, for the benefit of all those who love our job.
Some years ago, in a visit of Dalai Lama to Madrid, one of the people who were in the room asked: “what can we do to improve the world?” His answer was that it is not necessary to go to the other end of the earth to do that, but you only have to improve your immediate world… a kind word, a smile, also to strangers, can make someone else’s day. If we all do that – concluded saying – no doubt we would improve the world.
Amalia, Cristina y José Enrique Ramírez