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Archtop Guitars: The Journey From Cremona To New Y
Introduction-Forewords-Cremona Italy
The Art of D'Angelico
The Art of D'Aquisto
The Art of Monteleone
Monteleone's Four Seasons

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Rudy Pensa

Rudy Pensa was born in a small suburb of Buenos Aires, Argentina. At the age of seven, after studying the piano for two years, Rudy asked his father to buy him a guitar. Rudy took to the guitar immediately and it has remained his lifelong passion. Rudy studied classical music and practiced on a classical guitar, but at age 11, he was introduced to the electric guitar. Rudy enjoyed playing music with others, and along with his cousins, Alex and Jorge, he formed his first band: Los Dardos. At age 17, while playing classical guitar, Rudy joined forces with his father's string quartet to form a new group called El Sonido de Hilber. They recorded six singles under the label EMI Argentina. When Rudy heard The Beatles, his appreciation for the electric guitar grew stronger and turned his attention to playing rock music. In 1976, as a member of three-piece band with Ricardo Soule and Alex Pensa, they recorded the hit album Vuelta A Casa under RCA's label. During one of his trips to the U.S., Rudy met Francesca who would later become his wife. Together, in 1978, they opened Rudy's Music Stop on 48th Street in New York City where the store still stands. In 1982, Rudy built the "R Custom" - the very first Pensa Guitar. Today Pensa Guitars and Pensa Bass Guitars are known and venerated worldwide. In 2009, Rudy and Francesca opened a second shop on Broome Street in SoHo. Rudy divides his time between the Midtown and Soho Stores.

Photographs by: Vincent J. Ricardel

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