Watch the Ukulele’s Cousin, the Cavaquinho, on this Throwback Thursday

By Greg Olwell

The ukulele has many cousins throughout the world. Since the ukulele evolved from the machête, a small instrument brought to Hawaii from the Portuguese archipelago of Madeira, there are many similar stringed instruments throughout the lands colonized by the Portuguese and Spanish.

One of the ukulele’s closest cousins is the cavaquinho, a small four-stringed instrument that’s very popular in Brazil’s samba and choro music. The bright and lively cavaquinho has several different tunings, with D G B D being the most common.


For this week’s Throwback Thursday, I wanted to share this performance of “Choro Novo em Dó” by Ronaldinho do Cavaquinho.

If you want to learn more about the cavaquinho, check out this nice introduction.