The work of body percussion performed by the group Barbatuques was initiated by the musician Fernando Barba through his interest in extracting sounds from his own body, a habit that was baptized with the word barbatuques. Since 1988 Fernando has been developing this work, initially as a mere amusement and later as a research. In 1991, when he was admitted to the course of Popular Music at UNICAMP, he deepened his studies on rhythm with the musician and professor Jose Eduardo Gramani. In 1993 he founded in Sao Paulo the school of music Aue Nucleo de Ensino Musical, together with Andre Hosoi and Marcos Azambuja. Since 1995 Fernando has been teaching regular classes on body percussion at Aue. In the same year he learned of the work developed by the musician and researcher of body music, Stenio Mendes. From then on they started a musical and pedagogic interchange and Stenio became a constant collaborator in this work.
In 1996 Fernando founded the group Barbatuques, gathering students and partners in this incipient research. Initially, they participated in shows of other artists and since 1997 the group has performed their own shows.
Between 1998 and 1999 the group participated in various TV programs and initiated the creation of its own repertoire for the first cd.
At the end of 2000 the group Barbatuques was selected by Instituto Itau Cultural to participate in shows and cds of the project Musical Cartography selecting representatives from new musical trends from the whole country.
In 2001 the group performed during the ceremony to award the Itau Unicef prize that took place in Credicard Hall together with some two hundred children from various NGOs in Sao Paulo, the result of workshops given by the group together with these entities. At the end of the year the group participated in the show "Human Rights in Beggars' Banquet" that took place in the Sao Paulo Municipal Theater, with the support of the UN and broadcasted by TV Cultura.
In June 2002 the group performed during the ceremony to award Premio Crianca 2002 that took place in Sesc Vila Mariana by Abrinq Foundation. In July the group launched its first cd, Corpo do Som that registered in a definitive manner the path of this research on body percussion and spontaneous music.
In 2003 Barbatuques was selected to participate in Midem, the largest event of phonographic industry in the world, in the city of Cannes, France. Barbatuques received excellent critics from the public and press, who were surprised by the innovating proposal and with the musical quality of the group.
Returning from France, Barbatuques opened "Prata da Casa" in SESC Pompeia, having a record audience with over a thousand people in the theater.
During the Carnival, Recife received the group that was included among the participants in the eighth edition of Festival RecBeat, being well received by the local media and public, estimated around 15 thousand people.
Throughout the year Barbatuques performed many times in the State of Rio de Janeiro and in the interior of Sao Paulo; in Curitiba, it shared the stage with great Brazilian musicians in the show "O Som do Refavela"; it participated in the Festival Guiomar Novaes, in Sao Joao da Boa Vista, and in Sao Paulo gathered over two thousand people at SESC Pompeia in two days of shows.
In December, a performance during the project Concertos Matinais da Sala Sao Paulo attracted spectators from various regions of the city, getting a full house. Also during the last month of 2003 the group performed in Salvador, at the invitation of the IV Mercado Cultural, in a show that enchanted the Teatro Castro Alves.
During the whole year of 2004 Barbatuques performed shows and gave workshops in the main Brazilian cities such as Brasilia, Curitiba, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Londrina, towns in the interior of Sao Paulo, among others. The group made in partnership with Chico Cesar the cd for children "Marias do Brasil" a result of the play with the same name, with soundtrack by Chico Cesar and musical direction by Fernando Barba. During this same year the group also performed shows together with the percussionist Robertinho Silva. In December, they participated in a recording for the prize-winning work of the English group "One Giant Leap", that produces DVDs mixing sounds and images from all over the world, in partnership with National Geographic.
In March 2005 the group went on a European tour, including Spain and France. The group had several performances in Spain, in Barcelona and other Spanish cities in Catalonia at the invitation of Fundacio Cultural La Caixa. In France, the group performed at Cite de La Musique integrating the program of the Year of Brazil in France. In July Fernando Barba returned to Barcelona where he gave workshops at Fundacio Cultural La Caixa for musical educators from various parts of Spain.
Still in 2005 Barbatuques initiated the recording of its DVD registering the performance during the celebration of the 40 years of Teatro Tuca in Sao Paulo. In November the group launched its second cd, entitled "O seguinte e esse" and returned to Europe for further performances. In 2006 the group performed shows to launch its new cd all over Brazil.
In 2008 the group toured Europe in summer with a serie of sold out concerts amongst them Paleo Festival, Les Nuits de Fourviere, Cabaret Frappe and first concerts in Lebanon and Switzerland (Nyon, Geneve). They also toured USA for the first time with concerts in Chicago, San Francisco and Oakland.