How to choose the ideal instrument: Learn about classifications at TuCuatro

How to choose the ideal instrument? It could be tricky to choose an instrument from a variety when you have to consider so many factors, like the type of woods, the quality of work of a manufacturer, the sound that the instrument produces, etc.  That’s why we want you to know how we’ve divided the...

How do I know if a Cuatro is good?

Before buying an instrument, it is critical that you assure that the quality of the instrument is good enough and that it tunes correctly in all frets. Our teachers and musicians are constantly helping customers at the TuCuatro Store by reviewing each instrument to guarantee the quality of the sound.  One of the most used...

Anna Zayats plays a beautiful composition named “Cassiopeia” with a Balalaika

Instrumental composition “Cassiopeia by Anna Zayats Enjoy this beautiful musical piece by Anna Zayats called “Cassiopeia”, played with a Balalaika  

I Don’t Have a Venezuelan Cuatro & Have No Clue How To Get One

If you do not have a Cuatro and are interested in playing, make sure that you contact us. We have contacts with distributors and will be able to help you source a Cuatro suited for your needs. If you wish to have a long term commitment and would like to have an instrument specially made...

Parts of the Cuatro

Get to know your Cuatro. This lesson explains the different parts of the Cuatro. It is essential to be able to describe your instrument and also to get to know it. Each Cuatro has specific characteristics and attributes. By using these features, you will be able to orientate yourself on your instrument. So if on...

Popular artists using the Cuatros

There are popular composers and famous artists for the Cuatro. These are slightly different, and most of these persons have some sort of affiliation with Venezuela. The most famous being Simon Diaz who has brought incredible masterpieces such as Caballo Viejo (international versions derived from this song are The Gypsy Kings “Bamboleo”) who brings the...

Musical Instruments relatives of the Cuatro

In this occasion, we will go over a couple of instruments which can be considered as relatives to the Cuatro. There are many more than this, but the most popular or known cousins of the Cuatro are: The Ukulele The ukulele originated in the 19th century as a Hawaiian interpretation of the machete, a small...

String or percussion instrument?

The answer, BOTH! Many string instruments can be played by making specific strums or hitting the wood. For most instruments, this is optional, but the Cuatro needs this kind of love! There is nothing like strumming regularly in combination with dry strums (known as chasquidos or frenados) and knocking on a specific area of the Cuatro...

The Modern Cuatro

New Teaching Methods The Cuatro is no longer an instrument people keep hanging on their walls as an adornment. It is an instrument admired by many and has specific characteristics. The Cuatro player also has certain features. The Cuatro player is persistent, agile and can play from a nice and simple accompaniment to a soloist...

A New Kind of Sound – The Electric Cuatro

As with other music instruments, the Cuatro has also been exposed to the new age of innovation and interpretation by modern luthiers and artists. Here we are talking specifically about the Electric Cuatro played in the video below by She’s Alone band artist and Cuatro professor Abraham Sarache: Electric Cuatro Demonstration: “Promises” Abraham Sarache – She’s Alone There...
Luis Natera Teacher

Are there live lessons in TuCuatro?

From time to time we will be organizing live lessons. This has been a great success in the past where many students opt for participation, and we have a growing audience in YouTube who also enjoy watching the lessons and contributing in the form of comments and encouragement. The live sessions will always relate to...

World music using the Cuatro

 All this talk about the Cuatro’s presence in South America. Believe us; it is not the only place! Many interpretations of music are made across the globe, and this will continue to grow. YouTube is bringing us all closer, and we invite everyone to play with TuCuatro, share your progression and your music. Have a...

What is a Venezuelan Cuatro?

Let’s go ahead and get started……….what is the Cuatro? Venezuelan or Colombian? The first thing to note is that this is known as a Venezuelan Cuatro. We will, however, be referring to it as the Cuatro since when the Cuatro was first created, it was a spin-off of a guitarron and Venezuela or Colombia did...

What kind of music is traditionally played with the Cuatro?

Traditionally, the Cuatro is used as an accompaniment instrument to the harp & maracas. The combination of this ensemble creates music genres such as Joropo which is typical folklore music from the lowlands of Colombia & Venezuela. To the Joropo genre, there are several sub-categories such as San Rafael and Gaban, all of which will...

What types of Cuatros are available and who makes them?

The quality of the Cuatro (as for any musical instrument) has a direct impact on the sound and smoothness during playing. There are exceptions to the rule, as you can get some incredible sound out of lesser quality Cuatros. It is only once you get into playing and try a Cuatro of higher quality that...

Where is the Cuatro played?

Historically, Colombia and Venezuela…..recently WORLDWIDE!! Although the Cuatro is most popular in its region of origin, the intoxicating sounds of the instruments and incredible possibilities have spread. Modern artists such as Jorge Glem and Carlos Capacho have presented the possibilities of the instrument on an international level, but still a long way to go. There...

Where to begin with learning how to play?

If you are entirely new to the Cuatro and string instruments, the recommendation is always to start from the very beginning. The first lessons provided are the very basics of how to play, what to look out for and getting the hang of the most basic techniques you need to know. Our lessons are categorized...

How long does it take to learn to play the Cuatro?

For every instrument, there is a learning curve, and it does take time to familiarize yourself with the style of play. A common question is how long does it take to learn how to play the Cuatro, the answer is: It is entirely up to you! The most dedicated students who practice every day have...

How does a Cuatro Look Like and Sound?

The Cuatro is a four string distant cousin of the guitar which has evolved in the regions of Colombia and Venezuela. There are many relatives of the Cuatro as several string instruments have changed from the first guitars brought by the conquistadores in the 14th century. We will mention some more information about related instruments...

How do I get familiar with the Cuatro?

Learning how to play a musical instrument can be as complicated or as simple as we like. It all depends on how far it is that you would want to come. Some persons wish to learn some accompaniment songs, some chords and the ability to jam along. Others reach for the stars and try to...
Venezuelan Cuatro

How can I buy a Cuatro?

So you are considering your first Cuatro….now what? There are so many choices out there, and it’s mostly knowing what to look for and more importantly, where to look for it. One of the reasons the Cuatro may be limited in making its appearances on stages around you is because of the availability of the...

Can I use Ukulele interpretations with the Cuatro?

You can make use of Ukulele interpretations with the Cuatro. The resulting sounds can come across differently, but mainly as long as you make use of the same chords and the rhythm, then you can repeat what you play with the Cuatro. Translating interpretations is slightly different. It is not as easy as moving over...

Accompaniment Vs. Soloist

Accompaniment instruments and music are fantastic for either strumming away in your free time or playing in a band. This can be seen as a more basic or intermediate way of playing the Cuatro. Here you combine chords and strums to form excellent interpretations of songs and genres. Again, there are different levels of accompaniment...

Introducing Carlos Capacho

Carlos Capacho is one of the cuatro players discovered by the contest "Siembra del Cuatro"

Jorge glem “En el Cerrito” third CD on Cd Baby

Jorge Glem has released his new CD, named “En el Cerrito”.  This new project is the third one for this famous venezuelan cuatro soloist.  The CD is full of traditional music mixed with jazz and different tendencies of World Music. Jorge Glem is one of the best cuatro soloist of the moment.  He’s one of...

The woody woodpecker – Venezuelan Cuatro

This is an example of the kind of music you can play with the venezuelan cuatro. The woody woodpecker is a cartoon created in 1940 that is still alive

Jorge Glem playing with c4trio at the Berklee Performance Center

Venezuelan Cuatro player Jorge Glem plays in a group called C4Trio.  Very well known music group inside Venezuela.   Formed by 4 members, their most unusual characteristic is the fact that the group is conformed by 3 cuatros and a bass.

Learn a little bit more about the Venezuelan Cuatro

Learn a little bit more about the Venezuelan Cuatro, Venezuela's national instrument

Keep listening to musicians and players you like

Listen to music constantly so you can learn hidden tricks and techniques.

Leonardo Lozano – Venezuelan Cuatro Player

Leonardo Lozano is one of the most amazing Venezuelan Cuatro players.  He studied arts and music in Caracas, Venezuela and then started his career as a Cuatro Professional, playing in and out the country.  He’s so passionate about the instrument that he created the first academic course for learning instrumental Cuatro, and he’s one of the first people in the...

Is that a Venezuelan Cuatro?

A square-shaped venezuelan cuatro, not usually the shape for this kind of instrument.

Robert Munro playing a “Fuga con Pajarillo”

Robert Munro is a cuatro solosit from Trinidad & Tobago that has performed throughout South America, Mexico and the Caribe. He has develop his own Cuatro technique trough time and has made the parang, or "parranda", a popular folk music from the island, get to the stages with his unique style.

Just one night – by Abraham Sarache

Here we bring to you another friday song you’ll enjoy.   A mix of typical venezuelan music with nice and clean rock sounds.  We like this particular one because is an original composition by Abrahan Sarache, venezuelan composer from Caracas. 

An insanely amazing solo on a double-cuatro

Spectacular solo made by a musician from South America.

Venezuelan Cuatro and Scottish Castanets

Richard Troon and Kevin Carr playing exotic instruments.

Norwegian Wood – The Beatles

Norwegian Wood is a song by The Beatles that dates from about 1965. Norwegian Wood was written by Jhon Lennon and Paul McCartney.  It was originally played with Sitar and has been versioned into different rhythms and genres since then. We’ll drop two videos for you to enjoy.  The original one with Sitar, and a second one...

Luthiers – Venezuelan Cuatro luthier

Learn how to contact a Cuatro luthier from anywhere around the world.

An easy way to tune your cuatro

There’s an easy way to tune your cuatro.  You’ll learn it here, by noticing where to put your fingers on the frets and how to get the right sound of each string.

Learn to play the song “Sin Rencor”. A Venezuelan Gaita

Sin rencor is one of the most famous songs from the venezuelan folklore. It is a genre very typical from Maracaibo, Venezuela named "Gaita". And originally it´s played with a Venezuelan Cuatro, a Venezuelan "tambora" and other minor percussion.

Incredible Musicians. Dudamel and the Orchestra, Alexis Cardenas and Jorge Glem

Watch Gustavo Dudamel conducting the Orchestra and accompanied by the well-know violinist Alexis Cardenas and the amazing cuatro soloist Jorge Glem.

Experimental Luthiers

The art of making experimental music instruments.

Learning the latin music alphabet

Learn how to read music with latin notation.

9 Amazing Venezuelan Cuatro Videos

Prepare your ears and eyes... You`re about to see the best cuatro performers, the stars of the cuatro, the cuatro players that has become the point of refer

Let It Be – The Beatles (Cuatro Cover)

Listen to a Cuatro Cover of one of the most popular songs made by the Beatles.
Luis Natera Teacher

Luis natera playing “La Casa Azul”

Luis Natera is a recognized musician from Venezuela. He plays the Cuatro, which is a small 4 stringed instrument from the northern part of South America. He's one of the venezuelan soloist that keeps the pace and grace of old school and display a modern touch at the same time.

A quick tip to get better and master your instrument

There´s one essential thing you should do if you´re serious about learning to play the venezuelan cuatro. Read it now!

Learn a technique to play difficult songs when you’re a begginer

The best way of learning a difficult song is just to copy another musician player style. For some people this would be against normal sense (you should have your own stlye) but how you´re supose to do this if you´re just starting! Let´s find out.

If you get stuck trying to play a melody or a strumming pattern

Practicing could be a hard thing if you´re learning by yourself. You could be making the same mistake over and over again without noticing. But you´re not alone, this is the most common problem of musicians.

Learn how to play cuatro songs with tabs

Tabs are fundamental for learning new songs in almost every instrument. Musically speaking, tabs are a nice and clean way of learning a solo or an introduction without the hardness of pentagrams.

Dont use a cheap instrument, buy a nicer one

If you really like the sound of a particular exotic instrument you should start thinking about buying a new one for yourself. Most of the people starts playing these instruments with an old one that was sitting around the house for a while.

Types of Strings for the Cuatro

The type of strings you use on the Venezuelan Cuatro can vary and can make your cuatro sound very different. Be alert when buying them and try to get a nice package so your cuatro can sound like a professional one.
Venezuelan Cuatro

Venezuelan Cuatro

The Venezuelan Cuatro is a particular instrument that has been used in this country and some other countries for decades.  It's so popular that there's practically no genre inside the country that has not been played with a Cuatro.  Even the modern popular songs are using the cuatro (mostly as a reference to the culture)...
1 2