At the end of the 19th Century in the sugar cane and coffee plantations of the Cuban 'Oriente' region, two different music styles began to combine: the rhythms of African slaves and the songs of Spanish heritage.
At that time Son was played by small combos composed of three to five musicians. Among the first groups to achieve fame were the Cuarteto Oriental and some years later the famous Trio Matamoros.
At the beginning of the
twenties Havana experienced a major influx of orientales (people from 'Oriente')
and due to their cultural influence Son became more and more accepted in the
Capital. The 'Habaneros' (people from
Havana) fell in love with the
new rhythm and immediately put their peculiar stamp on it, speeding up the
tempo, and playing it with six musicians.
A young musician named Ignacio Pineiro still was not
satisfied by the existing sound of the Son groups. This sound was mainly based
on vocals percussion and strings. Thus in 1927 he created his own group:The 'Septeto
Nacional' adding, for the first time in the history of Son, a trumpet as lead
Young gifted talents continue the tradition founded by Ignacio Pineiro
Septeto Nacional last toured Ireland in 1998 and played at Whelan's in Dublin and Bar Cuba in Galway.