A wind instrument that originated with a native tribe of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in the Caribbean region of Colombia. It is a long hollow tubular wooden stick with holes near the end and a head made of beeswax and vegetable coal, trimmed with a turkey feather. There is a variety of gaitas to be found.
The gaita, also known as a kuisi, is an indigenous wind instrument from Colombia’s Caribbean coast. It’s thought to have been first played by the Kogi people of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. The gaita is made from cactus, with a feather in one end and holes for different notes. It has a male, female and short version, with varying numbers of holes, and is used in cumbia, merengue, puya and porro music. The gaita is known as the “Colombian bagpipe” because it sounds like Spanish bagpipes. Its most famous devotees are Latin Grammy winners the Gaiteros of San Jacinto, who also play the drums and maracas when they perform.