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Learn to play Cuban Music, the Cuban Tres & Changüi

Jon Griffin
12 years ago|1.8K views
Changüi - Traditional music from Guantanamo Province Cuba. For more information visit

Learn about the Cuban tres and learn a traditional changüi pattern.

Changüi is from the eastern part of Cuba, specifically Baracoa. Changüi came from the fusion of nengon and kiribá. Changüi is really defined more by instrumentation than actual patterns and is in the son family. Changüi, being a newer style, is also more complex than either nengon or kiribá. It is much more syncopated and instead of one pattern, many songs copy the voice a 3rd or 6th higher and then repeat a pattern. This pattern may change after each verse.

This video was taken in Cuba several years ago in my backyard, and it features a typical pattern on the tres. After that introduction a trio plays the ensemble parts. The ensemble consists of bongo, bass and of course the Cuban tres.

This is a modern interpretation of the changüi ensemble. In the original style the marimbula is the traditional bass instrument. Also, you would have a singer and someone playing guayo.

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