Cavaquinho minhoto (Cavaquinho from Minho)
Found mostly in the Portuguese region of Minho, the Cavaquinho minhoto maintains strong links to the characteristic musical forms of its region. Structurally, the fingerboard is level with the soundboard, facilitating the practice of rasgueado (a kind of percussive strumming) typical of this music. It has twelve frets, with a soundhole usually shaped in a half circle topped by two teardrops, although some are round. The Cavaquinho uses a wide range of tunings that vary according to location, traditional forms, and even players. Four metal, or sometimes nylon (originally gut), strings are typically tuned D4 A4 B4 E4, from low to high, perhaps the most versatile tuning, while G3 G3 B4 D4 or A4 A4 C#4 E4 are the most commonly used among players from Braga for the practice of the varejamento do malhão (a kind of two-finger strumming), and the vira (a traditional dance) in the moda velha (old style).
On September of 1992 ARTIMÚSICA Instrumentos Musicais, Lda. was officially established with a simple plan in mind: to manufacture Portuguese traditional chordophones.
The main Luthiers Manuel Carvalho and José Carvalho have learned the traditional method from their grandfather the Master Joaquim José Machado – a reference in the history of the Portuguese chordophones.
To this day these methods, more than a 100 years old, are in place and can be considered the secret behind the quality of the Artimúsica brand name instruments.
The craftsmanship of Artimúsica luthiers work is well known in Portugal and around the world.