Meaning of cuatro in English:



  • A small guitar, typically with four (or five) single or paired strings, used in Latin American and Caribbean folk music, especially in Puerto Rico.

    • ‘The recording opens with an instrumental featuring the characteristic driving rhythmic beat of the cuatro, a small-sized guitar.’
    • ‘The music is played on a small harp and a four-string guitar called the cuatro, with rattles for keeping the rhythm.’
    • ‘Other musicians in the band are Simon Mendoza on keyboards, Raymond Edwards on bass, Robert Persaud on cuatro and rhythm guitar and Joel Peres on percussion.’
    • ‘With vocals strident and melodic, and creative percussion, guitar, flute and cuatro, accompanied by box and electric bass, the 13 members of Viva Nueva bring a good parang session into your home via their first CD.’
    • ‘He began playing the guitar and cuatro at 14, and later mastered the vibraphone and the harmonica, which became one of his signature sounds.’
    • ‘He taught himself cuatro and guitar, and with other boys from the neighbourhood he played in ‘all these bands that lasted two weeks’.’
    • ‘She demonstrated her versatility by playing the guitar in the first song, the cuatro in the second and maracas in the third.’
    • ‘Then round about 12 or 13 I began with cuatro and guitar.’
    • ‘Various types of banjos and a four-stringed instrument called the cuatro are also native to the island.’
    • ‘Some had fashioned ‘cuatros’ out of heaven-knows-what, and they strummed the crude instruments as others sang along.’
    • ‘He once had a round stomach that propped up his cuatro.’
    • ‘He ended up with the lead microphone, singing and playing his cuatro.’


Latin American Spanish, literally ‘four’.