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 mere amusement and later as 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 the school of music, Aue Nucleo de Ensino Musical, in Sao Paulo 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 musician and researcher of body music, Stenio Mendes, who joined Fernando in a musical and pedagogic interchange. Stenio became a constant collaborator in this work.
In 1996 Fernando founded the group Barbatuques. Between 1998 and 1999 the group participated in various TV programs. At the end of 2000 Barbatuques was selected by Instituto Itau Cultural to participate in shows 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, a 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, which 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 an award ceremony, Premio Crianca for the Abrinq Foundation. In July the group launched its first CD, Corpo do Som.
In 2003 Barbatuques was selected to participate in Midem, the largest event of phonographic industry in the world, held in Cannes, France. Barbatuques received excellent responses from the public and press, who were surprised by the innovative 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.
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," and participated in the Festival Guiomar Novaes, in Sao Joao da Boa Vista, gathering over two thousand spectators at the SESC Pompeia within two days of shows.
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, a CD made for children, a 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 partnership with National Geographic, Barbatuques participated in a recording for the prizewinning work of the English group "One Giant Leap" who produced DVDs of hybrid sounds and images from all over the world.
In March 2005 the group went on a European tour, with several performances in Barcelona, Spain and other Spanish cities. In France, the group performed at Cite de La Musique.
In July Fernando Barba returned to Barcelona where he gave workshops at Fundacio Cultural La Caixa for musical educators from various parts of Spain. In celebration of 40 years of performing, Barbatuques released a DVD and CD entitled "O seguinte e esse."
In 2007 Barbatuque returned to Europe where they performed in Spain, Portugal, and France.