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The Socavon


[This is the socavon, a traditional guitar of Panama.]

This is the socavon, a traditional guitar of Panama.


[A close-up of the head of the socavon.]

A close-up of the head of the socavon.


[This image shows the pegs. In this particular instrument they have been shaped as the socavon.]

This image shows the pegs. In this particular instrument they have been shaped as the socavon.


[This socavon has a beautiful texture in its body.]

This socavon has a beautiful texture in its body.


[The four strings are clearly visible in this picture of the bridge.]

The four strings are clearly visible in this picture of the bridge.


[Here we see the backside of the socavon.]

Here we see the backside of the socavon.


By:

Marino Jaén Espinosa
2014-10-19

The socavon is a local variety of guitar made in Panama's countryside. In that respect is similar to the better known mejoranera instrument, also from Panama. While the classic guitar has six strings and the mejoranera has five, the socavon has only four.

Currently, the socavon is very rare. Since the mejoranera has one more string, it offers an easier learning curve for beginners, while the socavon is more complex to learn how to play. However, the socavon is an important part of Panamanian musical heritage, and thus, this article is an effort to help in the conservation of this instrument.

Different types of wood are used for making the instrument. He construction process is totally handmade and is usually done in the provinces of Herrera, Los Santos and Veraguas.


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