Reports for Concerts, Masterclasses, Competitions, Festivals, etc.
Editor's Noteby Rita Barnea
|A TV show that features the accordion? An accordion in a Polka Band that is fun, young and appealing to all? Yes, it is here! Be sure to watch the new show on the REELZ CHANNEL on April 11. Articles in the April USA News. |
You have a chance to participate by sending in a photo of yourself with an accordion! See how in this month's news.
There is more and more accordion activity every month. The accordion is everywhere.
Have a Happy Easter and a Happy Passover and a Happy Spring!
As always, I welcome your comments and ideas. Send to Ritabelll@aol.com
REELZ Original Reality Series Begins on April 11, Features the Accordionby Rita Barnea
|The accordion will be featured in a new TV program! Exciting news from Rachel Bass,the Public Relations oordinator of the television network REELZ Channel. |
Polka Kings is a REELZ original reality series premiering Saturday, April 11 at 9:30pm ET/ 8:30pm CT and featuring the Chardon Polka Band in their foot-tapping quest to survive each other and bring polka to the masses with a modern twist to the happiest music on earth. The group is always finding themselves in crazy situations ranging from private parties to nursing homes, Ukrainian summer camps to the Duct Tape Festival in Avon, Ohio. Each week Polka Kings follows the dynamic group’s attempts to break through and achieve mainstream status.
“Meet the Polka Kings” on Saturday, April 11 at 9:30pm ET/ 6:30pm PT. In “Meet the Polka Kings” viewers can get to know the band members Jake Kouwe, Pops Magooch, Mike Franklin, Emily Burke and Paul Coates—all who have interesting day jobs and hobbies when not on the road for the band.
This REELZ original series shows the incredible journey the band embarks upon as they try to survive each other and keep their personal and professional lives from derailing their quest for stardom.
Then, in Polka Kings – “The Collaboration” premiering Saturday, April 18 at 9:30pm ET/ 6:30pm PT lead singer Jake Kouwe decides that he wants to add some spunk to the band’s music, hoping to increase their fan base outside of the traditional polka world. He and Mike team up with a rap group to collaborate and they find the polka/rap fusion experience to be more interesting than they anticipated. Meanwhile, Paul is in denial about his car…it needs to be retired. So Pops and the team try to convince Paul that it’s time to say goodbye.
REELZ\'s new original reality series \"Polka Kings\" shows the incredible journey The Chardon Polka Band embarks upon as they try to survive each other and keep their personal and professional lives from derailing their quest for stardom. The group is always finding themselves in crazy situations ranging from private parties in nursing homes, Ukrainian summer camps to the Duct Tape Festival in Avon, Ohio.
Each week \"Polka Kings\" follows the dynamic group’s attempts to break through and achieve mainstream status and their ultimate goal of headlining their dream event: Oktoberfest in Germany. \"Polka Kings\" is produced by High Noon Entertainment with Jim Berger, Scott Feeley, Patrick Jager and Ross McCall serving as Executive Producers.
Watch REELZ on Dish Network (channel 299), DirecTV (channel 238), AT&T U-Verse (channel 799) and Verizon Fios (channel 233) and in HD on cable systems nationwide. To find REELZ on your local cable or satellite provider visit reelz.com/watch.
Jake Kouwe, 27, is the charismatic leader, accordion player and vocalist of the band, and also the glue holding the group together over the past decade.
Other members include Paul Coates (tuba), Emily Burke (saxophone), Paul “Pops” Magooch (drums) and Mike Franklin (banjo).
After graduating from Chardon High and trying out the scholastic scene at Lakeland Community College in Kirtland, Kouwe knew his passion was driving him in a different direction and he made the decision to focus on the band full time.
“I thought we could really make a run of it,” he said. “We buckled down and got bigger and better shows. We worked our tails off. If we didn’t have a job, we’d get a job. We’d play for free and at least it got us playing.”
Eventually, polka-inspired folks as well as other music enthusiasts began to notice. They’ve opened for Weird Al Yankovic, are a sought-after entity on the national Oktoberfest circuit and their recording of “Free Beer Polka” was nominated for Best New Original Song in the Cleveland Polka Hall of Fame awards.
For further information: Rbass@reelz.com
Join the "Show-Us-Your-Accordion" Movementby Rita Barnea
|For all accordionists and accordion lovers all over the world:|
"Hey accordion-lovers! Jake Kouwe, the star of #PolkaKings on @REELZChannel is working tirelessly and in conjunction with Accordion USA and Accordions Worldwide in attempt to bring polka music to the masses.
We know that people who like accordions really love accordions, so take pride in playing and help us bring this most worthy instrument to the masses and “#ShowYourAccordion” by posting a photo or video of you or someone you know holding an accordion to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter."
Make sure to include the hashtag #ShowYourAccordion when you join the movement.
Public Relations Coordinator Rachel Bass said:
"Since the series is centered around a band attempting to make polka music more relevant and premieres just after the polka-filled holiday Dyngus Day (Monday, April 6) we’re aiming to gather accordion lovers and hopefully even some famous faces to help us kick off a “Show-Us-Your-Accordion” movement.
It’s all in good fun and our goal is to create a following via social media where people take pride in playing or having played the accordion and who aren’t ashamed of this most worthy instrument by posting a photo of themselves playing/holding an accordion."
“Meet the Polka Kings” on Saturday, April 11 at 9:30pm ET/ 6:30pm PT
In “Meet the Polka Kings” viewers can get to know the band members Jake Kouwe, Pops Magooch, Mike Franklin, Emily Burke and Paul Coates—all who have interesting day jobs and hobbies when not on the road for the band. This REELZ original seriesshows the incredible journey the band embarks upon as they try to survive each other and keep their personal and professional lives from derailing their quest for stardom.
Watch REELZ on Dish Network (channel 299), DirecTV (channel 238), AT&T U-Verse (channel 799) and Verizon Fios (channel 233) and in HD on cable systems nationwide. To find REELZ on your local cable or satellite provider.
For further information:
Rachel Bass Public Relations Coordinator
53rd New England Music Festivalby Rita Barnea
|Peggy Falcetti-Chairman of the 53rd New England Music Festival invites all to attend. |
Mary Tokarski - President of AAA will be recognized at this event as a Lifetime Honorary Member at the Saturday evening Awards Banquet which will be attended by over
400 contestants and their families. Frankie Coelho, President of the Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts will make the presentation.
Cory Pesaturo, Internationally renowned accordionist, will perform in the Grand Ballroom at the Marriott Hotel in Newton, Massachusetts, on Sunday afternoon, April 12, 2015 at 2:PM followed by a Question & Answer Session in the Minute Man Room at 3:PM.
He will also perform Techno Style Music along with a D.J. at the annual “Dance Party” for all contestants on Saturday evening from 9:30 -11:30 p.m. in the Charles River Rooms and adjudicate some of the accordion categories.
As a youngster Cory competed in the New England Music Festival for several years and was a student of the late Tulio Gasperini at Gasperini Music in Pawtucket, R.I.
Cory Pesaturo is an American musician from Cumberland, Rhode Island who has been playing the accordion since the age of nine. Cory is one of only four accordionists in history to win a World Championship on both acoustic and electronic accordion.
For further information about the New England Music Festival, sponsored by the Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts, Inc. check the web site at: www.atamnemusicfestival.com
Report on the 2015 National Acordion Convention (NAA) in Texasby Laura Niland, President of the San Antonio Accordion Association
|The 2015 National Accordion Association (NAA) Convention took place at the Southfork Hotel and Conference Center from March 5-7, 2015 in Plano, Texas. |
The convention theme was "Duet Together" and the 2015 NAA Convention featured many duets. A unique new addition for 2015 was the "Artists Interpretation of Music Art Show".
NAA President Norman Seaton reports a very successful event and Laura Niland has prepared a superb Acrobat pdf report with lots of pictures that you can view at: 2015Convention.pdf
AAA Update on Deffner Competitionby Rita Barnea
|ATTENTION - CONTESTANTS PLANNING TO ENTER THE|
FAITHE DEFFNER ACCORDION COMPETITION
Sponsored by the American Accordionists' Association
July 8-12, 2015 at the Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites - 625 King Street in Alexandria, Virginia.
$25,000 in Cash Awards
Entries due June 1, 2015
Individuals planning to compete in the Deffner Competition MUST contact the AAA on or before April 15, 2015 in order for us to coordinate the percussion rehearsals for Karen Fremar's, "Herricks Road"which is a requirement.
Fees and details are not required at this time (due on or before June 1st), but the AAA must have confirmation of participation as soon as possible.
Please confirm your participation via
or fax: 203-484-5095
Texas Folklife Presents the 2015 Big Squeeze Accordion Contest Finalsby Sheree Scarborough
|Free Concert and Playoffs to be held at the Bullock Museum on Saturday, April 25, 2015|
Three Grand Prize Winners will be selected in each category: Polka, Zydeco, and Conjunto. Photo of the 2014 Big Squeeze Grand Prize Winners: Aaron Salinas in the Conjunto Category (San Antonio) Garrett Neubauer in the Polka Category (Altair) Randall Jackson in the Zydeco Category (Dallas)
Austin, Texas – March 24, 2014 – Texas Folklife and the Bullock Texas State History Museum are pleased to announce that the Finals for the annual Big Squeeze accordion contest will take place at the museum on Saturday, April 25, 2015. The event will be held from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m. on the Lone Star Plaza in front of the museum (in case of rain it will be held inside), and is free and open to the public. Big Squeeze finalists, whose names will be announced on April 3, will perform before the judges and the public. While the judges deliberate on the winners, the crowd will be entertained by an all-star musical line-up.
Eva Ybarra, the undisputed “Queen of the Accordion,” will headline this year’s program. Ms. Ybarra performs in her hometown of San Antonio—as well as across the country—and has two CDs produced by Rounder Records: A Mi San Antonio (1994) and Romance Inolvidable (1996). The concert will also feature last year’s three Big Squeeze Grand Prize Winners—Garrett Neubauer (Polka), Randall Jackson (Zydeco), and Aaron Salinas (Conjunto).
This is the ninth annual Big Squeeze accordion contest for up-and-coming Texas musicians, 21 years of age or younger. In order to better nurture young Texas talent, Texas Folklife expanded the popular contest last year. Instead of one Big Squeeze Champ, there are now three Final Grand Prize Winners chosen to represent the three main accordion genres—polka, zydeco, and conjunto. The polka genre includes German, Czech, and Polish traditions. Zydeco includes Creole and Cajun musical traditions. And conjunto includes norteño and Tejano.
There were eight talent showcases scheduled around the state that were free, open to the public, and featured performances by local musicians. Six showcases have already been held: La Joya Independent School District (February 7); Café 4212 in Houston (February 15); MECA in Houston (February 28); Los Fresnos High School (March 7); McDonald Public Library in Corpus Christi (March 8); and Pleasant Grove Branch Library in Dallas (March 21).
There are two talent showcases left in this year’s contest: at the Gallista Gallery with Conjunto Heritage Taller in San Antonio (March 27) and in Nederland in Southeast Texas (March 28).
Nine finalists (three from each genre) will be chosen from the field of performers at the showcases (and those who send in their performances to Texas Folklife by March 30) by a panel of esteemed music professionals. Accordionists will be judged on their technical proficiency—skill in playing, and technical and musical accuracy—as well as their song interpretation (stylistic choices, innovation, and originality) and stage presence (level of comfort on stage and attention to personal appearance). The nine finalists will be announced on April 3.
The finalists will perform at the Finals Concert and Playoffs at the Bullock on April 25. As mentioned, there will be three Grand Prize Winners selected. All three winners will perform at Texas Folklife’s highly acclaimed annual Accordion Kings & Queens Festival at Houston’s Miller Outdoor Theatre on Saturday, June 6. In addition, the three Big Squeeze 2015 Grand Prize Winners will receive a prize package valued at more than $4,000, including a cash prize, a brand new Hohner accordion, performance opportunities in Austin and Houston, publicity, professional development, and other professional opportunities.
“The Big Squeeze is one of our most popular programs at Texas Folkife,” says Executive Director Cristina Ballí. “It is also one of our most important programs, and enables us to carry out our mission to preserve, protect, and promote Texas’s diverse cultural heritage. In this case we are helping to uncover the next generation of musical culture bearers and help them to develop and hone their talent, while they keep their families’ and communities’ traditions alive.”
The Big Squeeze is supported by the members and Board of Texas Folklife and by Hohner, Inc.; by grants from Texas Commission on the Arts, the City of Austin through the Cultural Arts Division, the City of Houston through the Miller Theatre Advisory Board, the Houston Endowment, Texas Gas Service, and the Houston Press. Additional support is provided by regional businesses including Hacienda Records, and Frank+Victor Design.
About Texas Folklife
Texas Folklife is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to presenting and preserving the diverse cultures and living heritage of the Lone Star State. For 30 years, Texas Folklife has honored the authentic cultural traditions passed down within communities, explored their importance in contemporary society, and celebrated them by providing accessible and joyful arts experiences.
Sheree Scarborough (512) 922-5483 / email@example.com
Big Squeeze information:
Tomas Salas (512) 441-9255 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Corey Ledet's New CD "Destiny"by Rita Barnea
|Corey Ledet takes chances. Over twelve years ago, he left his home in Houston for South Lousiana with only his accordion. Now he has traveled the world.|
“To say that I literally started with absolutely nothing, I think I did pretty good by myself — no managers, no record companies, no booking agents, just me,” said Ledet, who turns 34 in August. “I moved down here with just my accordion and an ’88 Chevy Celebrity.
Today, he is the owner of accordions, equipment, two vehicles, a Grammy nomination, and six acres of land!
Corey is a member of the jam band, Soul Creole. He will have his last gig with his own zydeco band in March. Then, he takes some time off to take care of his health and his music.
Unfortunately he is diabetic and has severe allergies. In April hie will have surgery on nasal polyps and then begin a strong allergy treatment regimen along with diet and exercise.
During his time off, he plans to research new music and meet new musicians. He is considering a rerun to the University of Louisiana at Lafayette this fall as an instructor in the Traditional Music Program.
Coreys musical influences include Clifton Chenier Rockin’ Dopsie, Leon Sam, of The Sam Brothers Five, Buckwheat Zydeco, Beau Jocque, John Delafose, and Boozoo Chavi.
His recordings which are available on CD Baby and Itunes or b
3 Years y email:2 Late (2004, Goin’ Down to Louisiana (2006), Don’t Shut Me Out (2007), A Matter of Time (2009), Do You Want More? (2010), Nothin’ But The Best (2012), Live at 2013 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, (2013) Destiny
His future performances include:
Breaux Bridge, LA, Cafe des Amis 03/28/15, 8:30am, 11:30AM
Opelousas, LA,Yambilee Building, 04/10/15, 6:30pm 9:00
Parks, LA, Cecile Rousseau Poche' Memorial Park, 04/11/15
Lafayette, LA, Vermilionville, 04/12/15, 1:PM, 4:PM
Biloxi, MS, Mississippi Coast Coliseum, 04/17/15, TBD
Lafayette, LA, Parc International, 04/26/15, TBD
New Orleans, LA, Fair Grounds Racetrack, 05/02/15, TBD
Breaux Bridge, LA, Parc Hardy, 05/03/15, TBD
Shreveport, LA, Festival Plaza, 05/23/15, 5:45PM, 8:PM
Portland, OR, Tom McCall Waterfront Park, 07/04/15, TBD
Portland, OR, Tom McCall Waterfront Park, 07/05/15, TBD
Charlestown, RI, Ninigret Park, 09/04/15, TBD
Charlestown, RI, Ninigret Park, 09/05/15, TBD
For further information: email@example.com
2015 Savannah Music Festival Features the Accordionby Rita Barnea
|The Savannah Music Festival is being held from March 19 until April 4, 2015. The Savannah Music Festival is dedicated to presenting a world-class celebration of the musical arts by creating timeless and adventurous productions that stimulate arts education, foster economic growth, and unite artists and audiences in Savannah. It is the largest musical arts event in Georgia and one of the most distinctive cross-genre music festivals in the world.|
During the week, the Zydeco Dance Party, accordionist Buckwheat Zydeco performed with his group.
On Friday, April 3, 2015, the Cajun Dance Party will be held at 7:PM and 9:PM at the Charles H. Morris Center featuring the GRAMMY award winning group, The Band Courtbouillon. (photo above). In their Savannah debut, The Band Courtbouillon - Wayne "Le Boss" Toups, Steve Riley (of the Mamou Playboys) and Wilson Savoy (of the Pine Leaf Boys) - will let the good times roll the old-fashioned, two-stepping way. This promises to be one of the great SMF Cajun Dance Parties.
For tickets call the box office: 912.525.5050
Michael Bridge in Recital at the University of Torontoby Rita Barnea
|Michael Bridge of Toronto will present his second recital at U of T, featuring both solo works and collaborations with the wonderful talents of Joseph Johnson (TSO, principal cello), Quietish Pianomonkey Lee (piano), Johanna Wienhølts (harp), and a new work by Robert Taylor (composer). Works by Romiti, Bach, Taylor, Piazzolla and Creston.|
The concert takes place on Thursday, April 23, 2015 at 7:30 PM at the University of Toronto 80 Queens's Park, Walter Hall. Admission is free.
Canadian Accordion Champion Michael Bridge is one of the most versatile accordionists of today, expertly blending contemporary works with great composers like Bach and Haydn, French musettes, jazz standards, Piazzolla tangos and pop hits from the Beatles to present day. Michael made his orchestra debut at age 16 with the Boston Pops for the hit NPR radio show "From the Top". Though still a student, his music has led him to China, Croatia, Italy, France, the U.K., and all across Canada and the USA.
In high demand, Michael gives over 100 performances a year in a multitude of settings and genres, both as a soloist and in collaboration with clarinet, violin, soprano, tango singer, and The Extravaganza Quartet. Unique highlights of 2013 included a public filming of his improvised live accompaniment to Charlie Chaplin’s “The Kid” in Idaho, the Roland V-Accordion international festival in Rome, Miami’s Renaissance Ballroom, a tour of Virginia and West Virginia, Toronto’s Glenn Gould Studio, a TEDx TALKS presentation/performance in Toronto, The Calgary Blues Festival, “rolling concerts” on Via Rail’s cross-Canada train, Wurstfest (Texas’ “salute to sausage”), and winning the Calgary Stampede Talent Search. In 2012, he had the honour to perform with Toronto’s Quartetto Gelato in Santa Barbara, California.
Both live and recorded, Michael’s playing traverses many genres. Live, you may encounter contemporary classical, tango, jazz, polkas, rock covers, and improvised fugues all in the same performance. In 2014, Michael released his 6th solo album, encompassing baroque gems, folk melodies, and his acclaimed 1812 Overture on solo digital accordion.
A former student of Beverley Fess (accordion), Donna Holloboff (piano), Robert Rosen (harmony and composition) and Tim Janz (harmony and composition), Michael is now in his third year at the University of Toronto, where he studies with world-renowned accordionist Professor Joseph Macerollo. He is a captivating young musician, determined to raise the profile of the accordion for the next generation.
University of Toronoto is one of the few remaining facilities in North America where you can get an accordion degree, the other being at the University of Indianapolis, where accordionists can attain an undergraduate degree in accordion with Dr. Marko Petricic.
For further information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Alex Meixner's New CD "Happiness is a Choice"by Rita Barnea
|Accordionist Grammy nominated musician and producer Alex Meixner has recently released his new CD, "Happiness is a Choice"
Alex Meixner, a Grammy nominee, is recognized for his dynamic and energetic performances at festivals, concert halls and clubs throughout the USA of a repertoire that encompasses everything from traditional and original polkas to popular rock and party anthems that are interpreted with jazz, country, world music and pop overtones. His most recent release, "Happiness is a Choice" is sure to add to his growing base of fans.
The title track is a collaboration with Reggae singer and composer Carlton Pride, son of Country legend Charley Pride. HAPPINESS IS A CHOICE is not only an infectious melody and beat, but a great message song that is already resonating with the live audiences at The Alex Meixner Band’s shows throughout the nation.
This CD also premiers new songs by Meixner and frequent collaborators Michael Morris (drummer and vocalist from Temple, TX) and Randy Koslosky (accordion virtuoso from Pittsburgh, PA) including “Why Die Thirsty?”- a great new German/ Irish styled drinking song and “Let’s Go Ask the Band”- a fun polka with a country inflection.
The CD roars along with requested selections from the live repertoire including the humorous “Eggroll Song”, a Bulgarian folk rocker “Gankino Oro” and the ever popular rendition of “Amazing Grace” performed on the Hoseaphone! Meixner shares the spotlight with 2012 Canadian national Accordion Champion, Michael Bridge on the Latin flavored accordion tour de force “El Cumbanchero”. He also features TX rock icon, Hector Saldana of The Krayolas on a new pop song they co-wrote called “Sally” and even has a cameo appearance by his daughters Zoey (age 7) and Kayla (age 4) on “Pipihenderl”, a fun Austrian yodeling song!
1. Happiness is a Choice
2. Michael’s Polka
3. Why Die Thirsty?
4. Just For You
5. Gankino Oro
6. C&M Waltz
7. Let’s Go Ask The Band
9. Eggroll Song
10. Pony Tail
11. I’m Loving You Now
12. He Ain’t Right
13. El Cumbanchero
14. Hawaiian Polka
15. Love Your Enemies
16. Squeeze Me
18. Jup Ei Di
19. Amazing Grace
For further information: email@example.com
Fabio and Fabio to Perform for the LIAAby Rita Barnea
|The next meeting of the Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) sponsored by La Villini Restaurant,La Villini Restaurant,|
288 Larkfield Road, East Northport, NY 11731 is on Wednesday, April 1, 2015 at. 6 PM.
The LIAA is in their fourth year of celebrating the accordion on Long Island! Come and enjoy the festive music of the Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) and April's featured guest artists, Fabio & Fabio .
In the Lucarelli family, there are four generations of accordionists, all with the same name!
The first Fabio began performing on the accordion professionally during the days of Vaudeville. Fabio, Sr. was a self taught musician and entertained with the clarinet and accordion. He founded Fabio's Accordion School in Derby, CT.
Many years later, his son, Fabio Jr.,used his lunch box to pretend he was playing an accordion. At the age of 7 his father began to teach him. Later, they became known as Fabio & Fabio and he also gave accordion lessons.
With his accordion, Fabio was sent to the front lines in Korea, where it saved his life. Fabio performed for the troops and officer clubs with Eddie Fisher. After the service, Fabio Jr. continued playing with Bob Kay’s Orchestra and formed the Fabio Trio in the early 60’s touring from Florida to Greenland.
The accordion was always an integral part of the Lucarelli family life. Fabio 3rd at the age of 3, was given the accordion by his grandfather in 1957. Those days were known as the Golden Age of Accordion. Fabio practiced while his father was on the road, joining him when the Trio was on their East Coast tour. They continued performing as a Father/Son duet calling themselves Fabio & Fabio.
Fabio 3rd continued his accordion career performing in many venues and became a regular on the WICC Italian House Party in Bridgeport, CT. Fabio 4th was inspired by the recordings of his grandfather taking lessons from the great jazz artist, Dominic Mecca, of Waterbury, CT. During elementary school, he was the first and only accordionist in the Salem School Band!
Eventually he was introduced by his father on WICC radio and they continue to this day as the 3rd generation of Fabio & Fabio, performing many of the arrangements passed down to them by their grandfather. They have also recorded CD's which are available.
For further information about their CD's and performances:
For reservations: 631 261 6344
Will Holshouser in Musette Explosion in NYC on May 5thby Rita Barnea
|Accordionist Will Holshouser will perform with his group, Musette Explosion at the Cornelia St. Cafe in New York City on Tuesday, May 5, 2015.|
Joining Will in the group are Matt Munisteri on guitar and banjo
and Marcus Rojas on tuba.
From Will's Press Release:
"... swings with speed and clarity, sways with mystery and eroticism....Not simply an archeological paean to past masters, this debut recording from Musette Explosion makes the genre relevant to NYC's musical landscape."-- Elliott Simon, New York City Jazz Record
Three of New York’s most in-demand virtuoso musicians, each with a distinctive voice on his instrument, explore and expand on Parisian musette. They bring this multicultural dancehall music to new places through the highest improvisational communication, emotionally honest performances, and original compositions.
Marcus, Matt and Will keep busy backing up some of the world’s foremost artists (Regina Carter, Paul Simon, Henry Threadgill, Catherine Russell, David Krakauer, Mark O'Connor and others). Over the last fifteen years, they’ve indulged in a labor of love: exploring the beautiful and challenging French musette repertoire.
Their new (and first) album Introducing Musette Explosion may be the only accordion/guitar/tuba record to spend a week at #6 on Billboard's "Jazz Album" charts, and was featured in an interview on NPR's Fresh Air in November 2014. Upcoming appearances later in 2015 include the Monterey Jazz Festival, Chautauqua Institute's chamber music series, and Djangofest Northwest.
Musette is a unique urban art form, its beauty and passion born of the cultural diversity and chaos of city life. Paris in the early 20th century was a cosmopolitan melting pot, like New Orleans or New York. A true “musette explosion,” musical and cultural, was taking place.
According to musette historian Didier Roussin, Paris was “in the throes of explosive growth as poor migrants flocked in. Where people of all classes rubbed shoulders, places of amusement multiplied … Cafés, clubs, brothels, and dance halls were the crucibles in which were forged new musical forms.”
The original bagpipes (“musettes”) of the French Auvergnats were replaced by the Italians’ accordions, but gave their name to the new style of music; Roma guitarists and violinists brought in Eastern European and Spanish influences; American GIs introduced jazz, the banjo, and drums. German and Polish waltzes, polkas, and mazurkas were also in the air. This trio, with its unique instrumentation, continues the “explosion” through its new interpretations, sonic surprises, and original compositions.
“These three virtuosi found a wormhole from the simple harmonies and structure of the musette to a modern sensibility that coexists quite comfortably with the earlier material … They have served the music by following where it led: to the heart of their imaginations. Their energy, humor, virtuosity, and deep feeling make Introducing Musette Explosion a welcome, unique, and most satisfying experience.” – Mel Minter , Musically Speaking blog
"This group does not restructure the repertoire’s foundation; they handle it all in their own way. [Musette Explosion] has respectfully reclaimed 1930s Paris for the 21 st Century.” – Aaron Cohen, Downbeat
Tuesday, May 5th, 2015
Cornelia Street Cafe
29 Cornelia St., New York NY 10014
Doors open at 8:30 pm, 2 sets at 9:PM
$10 cover, $10 minimum
Album available through Amazon, CDBaby, and iTunes.
For more info please see:
photo by Reuben Radding
Reports for Concerts, Masterclasses, Competitions, Festivals, etc.
John Bonica Communications With Injury Related Accordionists - USAby Harley Jones
|The author of the book Play Your Accordion Without Pain, John Bonica PT CMP NZRP was visiting New Zealand recently and I had the pleasure of meeting him on a yacht in the beautiful Bay of Islands. |
While discussing his book, John told me about the interesting contacts his book has ocassioned, so I asked him to write, as there may be many other accordionists very interested.
John Bonica wrote:
"In the process of writing my book for accordionists exclusively, I have been contacted by several readers with pain and issues which are hindering their ability to manage the left and right hand keyboards. Most contacts are from my readers, and many are from those who have heard of my book through friends.
The provision of my email address has prompted direct contact with me, and with the aid of the internet, they have provided me with digital pictures and or video (via Skype) and direct phone contact.
With calls coming from England, New Zealand, the USA, and other countries, I have been able to solve most issues and give helpful advice, which has made a positive change.
Interestingly enough, most issues involved a slight change to the right hand / wrist / elbow position together with altering straps to align the keyboard correctly to fit the individual’s body type.
Some were playing instruments way too small for them, while others were struggling with slanted keyboards and accordions too big for their body type. Other issues involved bass straps being too loose, incorrect seating height, and of course the troubles that occur for those that play standing, or professionals that stroll.
One thing that came out frequently was that as we age (or change shape) the position we wear the accordion must change somewhat as we grow from childhood to adulthood, or if weight and body size changes, it is necessary to adjust instrument positioning accordingly.
As we age, going to a lighter instrument is not always the correct solution. (I personally witnessed Galla-Rini playing a full sized accordion way into his 90’s with ease.)
Keep the enquiries coming. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org I welcome your questions and the advice I provide is free. These consults are given free in appreciation for all the help and advice I have received from many people musically over my career."
This exciting eBook by John Bonica (PT CMP NZRP) is being published chapter by chapter, with about one chapter being released each month.
For more information, and to purchase: John Bonica
Anthony Mecca…His Life, His Musicby Anita Siarkowsi
|The Connecticut Accordion Association (CAA) paid tribute to one of the greatest accordionists of all time, 94 year old Anthony Mecca, at Vasi’s Restaurant in his hometown of Waterbury, Connecticut on February 22, 2015. The celebrity’s son, Bill Mecca of Watertown, Connecticut hosted the multi-media presentation, with Anthony’s former student, Don Gerundo of New Rochelle, New York coordinating technical support, audio and video programs.|
The audience, including many of Meccas including Tony’s sister, Katherine, thoroughly enjoyed learning about Tony’s extraordinary accordion career, witnessing his work, and hearing his music. In attendance was 91 year old Waterbury resident, Gerry Hertel. He shared the excitement of his 16th birthday as an avid accordion student from New Jersey, celebrating by going to Carnegie Hall in New York City for an accordion concert, seeing and hearing Charles Magnante, the most famous accordionist in the world, and being very impressed with the young accordion duo, brothers Domenic and Anthony Mecca.
A milestone for the instrument, this was the first accordion concert ever held at Carnegie Hall. The thrill of 18 year old Tony Mecca’s life was to participate as an accordion duet with his brother, 24 year old Domenic in this event – which attracted 3,000 people representing New York’s highest musical and social circles.
At this memorable, history making, musical event, the two new personalities, the Mecca brothers, were introduced by NBC T.V. Commentator, Kelvin Keech.
According to Anthony Galla-Rini - renowned accordionist, composer, and conductor……“When they (Tony and Dom Mecca) were invited to take part in this concert, they approached me to prepare a duet arrangement of Gershwin’s ‘Rhapsody In Blue’ as their one selection. The Mecca brothers paid me $60.00 for my arrangement.”
Galla-Rini went on to say, “After they finished the last note and walked off the stage at the concert, the applause was so strong and prolonged, that the Mecca brothers had to come back for an encore! In Vaudeville day parlance, that was described as stopping the show. The Meccas did just that at the Carnegie Hall concert, so the next act could not go on until the audience got their encore. They chose Pietro Frosini’s “Jolly Caballero”, and won enthusiastic appreciation. These brilliant young stars already had a wide following.”
Encores at Carnegie Hall transpired for Tony Mecca in 1959 and 1962 -the latter, a gala accordion concert featuring the Tony Mecca Trio, plus classical accordionists Carmen Carrozza, Charles Magnante, Andy Arcari, Betty Ann McCall - and Joe Biviano, who conducted the Accordion Symphony Society of New York .
Born on January 9, 1921, Anthony Mecca’s first accordion teacher at age 10 was Domenic Mecca, his 6 year older brother. At age 13, Tony continued his musical studies in New York City with Joe Biviano - performer, composer, and a founder of A.A.A. Renowned accordion performer and composer, Pietro Frosini, taught Tony bellows shake techniques.
While serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps from 1941 to 1945, Tony entertained the troops. In 1946, he moved to New York City, where he joined the teaching staff of Joe Biviano School of Music, recorded extensively for radio and television, performing in concerts and club dates as well. Around 1956, he opened his own music school In Westchester County, New York.
In the 1950s, ‘60s, and ‘70s, Tony performed in all major A.A.A. annual events at the Town Hall in New York City, plus Chicago, Cleveland , and Washington D.C. He was the regular guest artist at concerts and advertising campaigns for Fred Gretsch - world’s largest instrument manufacturer, with headquarters spanning 10 stories of a city block in Brooklyn, New York.
Tony performed for Annunzio Montovani, Michael Tilson Thomas, and for Leonard Bernstein with the New York Center Symphony, providing background for the Broadway musical, Cinerama, plus operas - “Four Saints in Three Acts” and “Wozzeck”. He has recorded with Andre Kostelanetz, Percy Faith, Mitch Miller, and performed in the orchestras of the Lucky Strike Hit Parade, Bobby Vinton and Ed Sullivan Shows, plus many others featuring accordion on T.V. networks, NBC,CBS, ABC - including the Perry Como and Vic Damone Shows. For 5 years, Tony was staff musician at New York City Radio Station WOV.
For RCA Victor, Columbia, and Decca…Mecca recorded several albums with accordion great, Joe Biviano. Tony accompanied Frankie Laine, singer, international star for his recording of “Raw Hide”, the theme song for the T.V. series, which aired from 1959 through 1966.
While remaining active in the accordion field in the empire state, Tony relocated in 1983 to the Palm Beach, Florida area, where he became very involved entertaining at society galas, various celebrity shows, and private parties. The 50 piece Lauderdale Pops Orchestra frequently featured Tony Mecca as accordion soloist.
A high point of Tony’s career was December 3, 2000, when he performed with the Naples, Florida Symphony Orchestra, accompanying the world famous Italian tenor….Luciano Pavarotti’s agent had contacted 8 different contractors in pursuit of an accordionist for this concert. Each and every one of them recommended only one accordionist, Anthony Mecca.
For approximately 35 years, from the 1950s through the ‘80s, Tony served on the Governing Board of American Accordionists’ Association, was their 2nd Vice President from 1960 through 1969, and again in the early ‘80s.
The song, “Isolde Polka”, was written by Tony in honor of his wife, Jeannette. After she died, Mecca moved back to Connecticut in 2014. Tony currently resides in Wolcott, and enjoys the attention and camaraderie at Connecticut Accordion Association gatherings with his son, Bill Mecca.
Tony Mecca’s legacy will live on through his family, friends, and accordion students - like Bob Siarkowski of Plantsville, Connecticut, who studied with him for 2 years in New Rochelle, NY, practiced 3-5 hours a day, and recalls their first meeting…….“Tony asked me to play something. I played an advanced version of “Talk Of The Town”. Then he said, “Hold up your right hand. The thumb is a finger. How many fingers do you have?” I said “Five. So he taught me five finger chords. Tony Mecca was the best jazz accordionist and teacher, bar none. God bless him for all he did for me and the accordion world.”
Guy Klucevsek in Successful Concert Series in New York Cityby Rita Barnea
|Video 1: Guy Klucevsek performing his original composition, "The Asphalt Orchid" with violinist Todd Reynolds.|
Video 2: Guy Klucevsek original composition, Spinning Jennie. Performers: (L to R) Art Bailey, Guy Klucevsek and Nathan Koci.
Accordioist Guy Klucevsek performed at the Stone in New York City last week in many styles and with various instruments. His one week residency there was very well attended. I was very fortunate to hear Guy and Alan Bern perform original accordion duets/solos and also selections for accordion and piano (Alan Bern}.
The music and titles were full of emotion and great originality. Some of the selections performed were:
"Plain and Fancy" composed by Guy about his travels through Pennsylvania while going to accordion contests; "Angel Blues" duet by Alan Bern; "Don't Let the Boogie Man Get You" for piano and accordion;"Life, Liberty and the Prosciutto Happiness" for two accordions; "March of the Wild Turkeys" inspired by the Mary Oliver poem; "Pitch Black, accordion duet;"Bar Talk" dedicated to Bela Bartok;"Breathless and Bewildered";"The Day the Snow Fell Upwards"for piano and accordion;"Dueling Devedals" by Alan Bern inspired by "Deliverance".
Alan said," I love playing with Guy. It is fun and non competitive.
Over 70 people attended the sold out performance. Guy and Alan have a warm, friendly way of explaining their selections and made me feel that I was at a house concert. I was very impressed not only by their virtuosity and originality but also their concise explanations of their selections and their personal feelings and reasons for each composition.
I highly recommend that you attend one of Guy's performances for a special treat in accordion style, virtuosity, and musical ambiance that is very rare today.
All photos/videos are by Ray Foley of GRAIN PICTURES. Ray Foley’s passion for film and music flows boundlessly through the immersive, penetrating style that has made him an industry standout for more than 15 years, working for giants like Albert Maysles, Bob Giraldi, Susan Froemke & Robert Leacock,
Foley has offered poignant glimpses into the world of music, from the crafting and recording of AARON NEVILLE’s latest album to HARRY BELAFONTE’s inspiring quest to bring about global change through music. His studied intimacy caught the eye of Verve Records resulting in a trio of deeply personal and moving music videos for country balladeer TEDDY THOMPSON. He is currently collaborating with SNL photographer Mary Ellen Matthews on a portrait of singer/songwriter James Maddock. Raypfoley@gmail.com
For further information: email@example.com
Nick Ariondo Performs on European Radioby Rita Barnea
|On March 22, 2015 composer/accordionist Nick Ariondo was featured on Radio Beograd in Serbia in a "Century Accordion" Concert Presentation Series. The program was hosted by Marija Sekularac.|
Selections from his CD "Trilucence" were played. Instrumentation is accordion, clarinet, violin, and piano. Radio listeners heard Nick Ariondo performing his own compositions as well as his arrangements of other composers of the 20th century.
Nick Ariondo, accordionist and composer, was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he began his early accordion studies at seven years of age with Mario Di Nardo. The family moved to California where he continued his studies with Ford Bosman, with prominent classical accordionist Anthony Galla-Rini and with jazz accordionist Tommy Gumina.
Nick attended Los Angeles City College and California State University at Los Angeles where he received his Bachelors & Masters in Music Composition & Performance. Nick Ariondo's performances and music compositions encompass a wide variety of music styles from classical, modern contemporary, ethnic & world cultures from gypsy to jazz.
Nick's artistry is presented in solo recital, chamber music and appearances with symphony orchestra as Ariondo continually searches for new and innovative techniques, a lifetime dedicated to promoting the accordion and its unlimited resources.
His expressive performances & compositions have been appreciated worldwide and music critics rank him among the avant-garde artists and is often referred to as the "Yehudi Menuhin of the accordion." The Los Angeles Times calls Nick Ariondo "the irrepressible avant-garde accordionist!”....."infinitely expressive, technically dazzling!"..... "the pre-eminent accordionist"......."a force to be reckoned with!"
Nick Ariondo's CD, "Trilucence" is available on www.cdbaby.com/cd/ariondo
For further information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Video: Buckwheat Zydeco "Parti de Paris" - USAby Harley Jones
|Video: Buckwheat Zydeco: "Parti de Paris" - A popular traditional zydeco piece sung in Creole French! Published on Buckwheat's World, 19 March 2015.|
Jacinto Guevara’s Retirementby Rita Barnea
|Jacinto Guevara, born in 1956 and button accordion player since 1977, is a painter, musicologist and performance artist. He is an expert in Texas-Mexican music and 1920's pop music.|
Originally from Los Angeles, California, Jacinto Guevara came to San Antonio in 1992 as a "conjunto" accordion-playing band leader and fine artist, getting his first professional gig at Fiesta Texas, and his first S.A. gallery experience with the Dagen Bela Ortiz Gallery in 1993.
He paints what he sees, disdaining things copied from photographs. Besides accordion, quena, and banjo, Jacinto's passion is painting portraits from life, preferably dancers, writers and actresses
Diatonic accordionist Jacinto Guevara writes, “Last public performance of all time. After performing, composing, arranging and band-leading since 1976 I'll be retiring my musical career. I've performed at hundreds of private parties, original music clubs, folk festivals, theatrical plays, studio sessions with other bands, recordings for movies (three) and for dignitaries including César Chávez, Gloria Molina, Jesse Jackson and Charlie González.
I thank all the people who have performed with me in the last 38 years including Ray Symczyk and Joaquin Muerte. Thank you, Everto Ruiz at CSU Northridge for lending me the acordeón for a semester as a bribe to get me to learn and perform guitarrón in your mariachi."
Jacinto Guevara’ final gig was at Barriba Cantina, Crocket and Navarro on the Riverwalk, San Antonio, Texas on Sunday March 15th.
Painting is Jacinto's self portrait.
Pat Racioppa: Accordionist, Accordion Repairman and Woodworkerby Joan Grauman
|Pat Racioppa started playing the accordion at the age of eight. Like a lot of children in the 1950s, his introduction to the instrument was “the call” to his parents from the local music school. “Mrs. Music” offered ten lessons and the use of an accordion for the small fee of $20. Plus, Pat would be picked up, and then brought back home from these lessons. |
After ten weeks, all students would be evaluated. If parents chose to continue the child’s accordion lessons, it would cost them $400 for a new accordion. However, as some time passed, Pat’s father noticed that his son was not really progressing. After inquiring, it was discovered that Pat’s teacher was only a few weeks ahead of him in these free lessons. It was time for a new teacher.
Pat continued to play until he graduated from high school. Then he joined the Navy, married his high school sweetheart Connie, and started a family. As happens so often, the accordion was placed in the closet, coming out only at Christmastime and for family gatherings. He basically stopped playing for almost 20 years.
In 1984, Pat’s job took him to Yakima, Washington. While looking for piano lessons for his daughter in Yakima, he came across Maletta Deccio Studio, where he resumed accordion lessons with Al Maletta, Sr. With Al’s excellent guidance and friendship, the love of the accordion was rekindled in Pat and remains strong to this day.
The Racioppas returned to the east coast when Pat was again transferred and are currently living near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. When Pat retired and was looking for a new challenge, he began repairing and rebuilding accordions. An excellent woodworker, handyman and accordionist, venturing into the world of accordion repair seemed like the perfect solution to fill his newly acquired free time. He was fortunate enough to be taken under the wings of a few master repairmen who assisted him along the way.
Pat’s basement is a delightful, immaculate repair shop and shrine to the accordion. He also builds and sells beautiful wooden accordion stands that look like fine pieces of furniture. My accordion proudly rests on one of his stands when not being played.
Pat performs regularly in Pennsylvania, Maryland and the Washington, DC area. He and Connie are very active in the Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society.
Joe Natoli to be Guest Artist for AAA and ATG in Julyby Rita Barnea
|Accordionist/composer Joe Natoli will have a very busy summer as featured performer at both the 2015 AAA Festival from July 8-12 in Alexandria, Virginia and the ATG Festival from July 22-25 in Lisle, (Chicago) Illinois. Consider yourself very fortunate if you attend these festivals and hear his sensitive and virtuoso playing. You can read more about both festivals in this publication. From the ATG website:|
Joe makes his home in central Ohio with his wife JoAnn and has been a performer and advocate of the accordion since the age of seven. Joe started his studies with prominent Ohio accordion teacher, the late Mickey Bisilia of Youngstown, Ohio.
Under Mickey’s tutelage, Joe won his age division in the American Accordionists’ Association national competitions each year until finally capturing its coveted Open Virtuoso national title at the age of 18 in Washington, D.C.. Later that year (1972), Joe became the AAA United States representative in the Coupe Mondiale world accordion competition held in Caracas, Venezuela, where he was chosen first runner up, missing the world title by 17 hundredths of a point. Joe also released an album for Giulietti Accordion Corporation that year under the Neofonic label entitled Accordion Masterworks presents Joseph Natoli and Richard Romiti, which includes many unique solo and duet arrangements and original compositions for the free bass accordion.
More recently, Joe was the winner in the first Roland US V-Accordion national competition (held in Los Angeles in September 2008). Joe subsequently represented Roland US in the Roland International V-Accordion competition held in Rome, Italy in Nov 2008. From January 2009 to June 2010, Joe became a product specialist, performing artist and clinician for Roland Corporation on the V-Accordion.
Since Joe possesses Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in music composition from the University of Toronto, he tries to use his orchestrational knowledge to exploit all the best coloristic and orchestrational possibilities on the FR7X. Joe’s arrangements traverse a diverse set of musical styles (including classical, light classical, jazz, and ethnic). Joe’s approach to the FR7X is to use the best orchestration possible to enhance the composition, often including accordion sounds, orchestral and percussion sounds, or all in combination.
Dallas Vietty Presents Gypsy Jazz Workshop and Concertby Rita Barnea
|The DC Area Gypsy Jazz Meetup presents accordionist Dallas Vietty on Saturday, April 18, 2015 performing with the group,Tempus Fugit|
1:30 - 5:30pm GYPSY JAZZ WORKSHOP
7:30 - 9pm CONCERT
Brookmont Church, 4000 Virginia Place, Bethesda, MD
New York based group, Tempus Fugit, performs Django Reinhardt's music of 1930s Paris, and creates new, high-energy compositions that push the boundaries of the gypsy jazz genre. Expect to hear swinging, spirited melodies, soulful, passionate expression, and mind-blowing artistic virtuosity.
The band features Darius Scheider (lead guitar, compositions, and vocals), Dallas Vietty (accordion), and Robert Cuellari (rhythm guitar). The half-day workshop is open to players and enthusiasts of all abilities and instruments. This is a great opportunity to learn, hear, and experience the musical genre originated by the legendary guitarist Django Reinhardt and the Quintette du Hot Club du France.
Rather than being very instrument specific, this workshop will focus more on gypsy jazz vocabulary and improvisation. Master luthier Craig Bumgarner will also be displaying some of his handcrafted Manouche guitars.
The repertoire of Tempus Fujit delivers sophisticated yet swinging pieces, and intends to continue Django's work by performing original compositions that take Django's spirit into today. The unique sound of the band is based on the passionate and joyful conversations between the acoustic guitars and the accordion.
Children under 18 will have free admission to the concert
The concert is $10/person
Workshop plus concert is $42
For further information: email@example.com
Video: Acclarion Live Performance on Windsor's 401 Sunset TV Show - Canadaby Harley Jones
|Acclarion performs Czardas live on Windsor's 401 Sunset TV Show, Published on Jan 16, 2015.|
Acclarion is the Canadian husband and wife team of David Carovillano (accordion) and Rebecca Sajo-Carovillano (clarinet). They recently performed at the Art House in Detroit and have just finished a photo shoot for their upcoming third CD, which will be titled "Shattered Expectations."
Sy Kushner in Concert in New York Cityby Rita Barnea
|The NY Klezmer Series will present the Sy Kushner Jewish Music Ensemble on April 7, 7:30 at Stephen Wise Synagogue, 30 W. 68th Street, New York City. |
The band, consisting of Sy Kushner, accordion, Aaron Alexander, drums, Jeremy Brown, violin, Marty Confurius, bass, and Ken Maltz, clarinet, will perform selections from their fourth and latest CD, “Klez Kush and Son”.
Concert tickets are $15. For more info, contact aaronalexander.com/wp/concert-schedule.
For more info on Sy Kushner’s works: firstname.lastname@example.org
Video: Potomac Accordion Ensemble Concert, Fairfax - USAby Dan Grauman
|The Potomac Accordion Ensemble, directed by of Joan Grauman, played a variety of music including Broadway, light opera, classical, international and American folk at their 13th March concert. The concert also featured two recent compositions for accordion by Stas Venglevski.|
The concert was part of the Bonita Lestina Old Town Hall Performance Series sponsored by the City of Fairfax, Virginia Commission on the Arts.
Video 1. The Big Chuich Tarantella by Stas Venglevski
Video 2. While I’m Away by Stas Venglevski performed by Joan Grauman and JoAnn Pankow
The Potomac Accordion Ensemble was founded in 2004 by its director, Joan Grauman. Originally, Joan formed the group to assist members of the Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society (WMAS) who just started to play the accordion or had just returned to the instrument after not playing for (up to 45) years.
The music and the camaraderie kept everyone coming back for more. Soon, the ensemble was being approached by the national accordion associations to perform at their events and banquets. Named after the beautiful Potomac River, the group has performed in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, all over Virginia, Washington, DC and Maryland.
Performing in coffeehouses, for major music festivals, farmers’ markets and Christmas events, the now almost eleven year-old ensemble is looking forward to another exciting year of bringing the beautiful sounds of the accordion to the public.
Connecticut Accordion Orchestra to Perform for Unico Benefitby Rita Barnea
|On Sunday, April 26, 2015, the Connecticut Accordion Association Orchestra conducted by Linda Reed, will perform for "Dinner, Music, and Wine, Italian Style". |
The event presented by the men and women of the Pontelandolfo Club and Waterbury Chapter of UNICO National takes place at 1:PM. Price is $40/person at LaBella Vista!The Ponte Club, 380 Farmwood Road, Waterbury, Connecticut.
Proceeds benefit the Saturday Italian Language and Cultural Programs for Youth.
For tickets contact:
Rose City Accordion Camp June 7-12, 2015by Rita Barnea
|The Rose City Accordion Camp will be held June 7-12, 2015 at the Silver Falls State Park Conference Center Sublimity, Oregon.|
The Conductors will be Murl Allen Sanders(right photo) and Stas Venglevski(Left Photo). Workshop instructors are Beverley Fess and Mary Tokarski.
Enjoy music in ensembles, workshops and more in a beautiful setting. Lodging, main service and meals are included. Enrollment is limited. Please reserve your place early.A non-refundable $50.00 deposit will hold your place. Pay balance by March 1, 2015. Cancellations - 50% refund after April 1 / No refund after May 1, 2015.
The Rose City Accordion Club, located in Portland, Oregon, is a non-profit organization comprised of individuals who share enjoyment of and enthusiasm for the accordion. The Club embraces all styles of accordion music and welcomes all who have an interest in the accordion whether they play or not. Our intent is to promote the future of the accordion and the enjoyment it gives to all.
Our members play the accordion at various events and venues around town.
The Rose City Accordion Club is open to all accordion players, from beginners to professionals, their friends and families, and to anyone who enjoys music. Meetings are held monthly on the third Saturday of each month at the Milwaukie Public Safety Building, 3200 SE Harrison Street (SE 32nd and Harrison), Milwaukie OR, from 1:00 to 5:00 PM.
For further information: email@example.com
16th Las Vegas International Accordion Conventionby Rita Barnea
|The Las Vegas International Accordion Convention takes place in Las Vegas at the Gold Coast Hotel from June 22-25, 2015. Many well known and virtuoso accordionists will perform including Riders in the Sky, Grayson Masefield, Joey Miskulin, Stas Venglevski, Mary Tokarski, Luciano Testani and more. Plus The Las Vegas International Accordion Orchestra directed by Professor Joan Sommers.|
Among the featured performers are Luciano Testani, Europa Trio, Pete Barbutti, Paul Betken, Jerry Cigler, Gordon Kohl, Gina Brannelli.
Included are Four Fun Filled Nights of Music and three WONDERFUL days of workshops plus three fantastic Lunch Concerts – INCLUDED are 7 great meals with 7 great concerts! Over 40 workshops taught by the best of the best – and After Hours Club Concerto where you can be the Star! Come join the FUN and discover why it’s called “the best accordion party EVER”!
For further information: Vegas@AccordionStars.com
Calling All Students! Join the AAA Junior Festival Orchestra – Have some accordion fun July 8-11by Mary Tokarski, President American Accordionists' Association, Youth Conductor
|Are you an accordionist 18 years of age or younger? Want some fun playing in an orchestra? What? You’ve never done that before? It is GREAT FUN!|
In 2012, one of my life-long dreams came to life…the first AAA Junior Festival Orchestra was incorporated into our festival! Only one year earlier, Cody McSherry and his parents attended the Open Meeting at the AAA Festival, where Cody (only 8 years old at the time) asked why there was no opportunity for young people to participate in the Festival Orchestra.
I had contemplated taking on this mission for many years before this, and decided to take the bull by the horns and get it going. So far, we have had orchestra members from Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, New York, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia and even Canada, Russia and New Zealand.
Each year, the students have surpassed my greatest expectations in selecting and preparing the music, literally “knocking the socks off” the audiences at the events.
We began the journey in Baltimore in 2012 performing the Austin Powers Theme “Soul Bossa Nova” and a James Bond Medley. The 75th Anniversary Festival in New York City proved to be even more spectacular, and the music continued to be more challenging: Elizabethan Serenade and Rock Island Rock. Things went so well in rehearsal that we added the Angry Birds Game Theme Song to our concert!
Last year’s orchestra in Tarrytown, NY included an incredibly beautiful work from Andre Astier called “Piece dans le style Ancien” (complete with great challenges for the performers). Squeeze Box Rock, and a special presentation of Carmen Carrozza’s original work “Cascade”, including Carmen’s niece Gia Ciccone as a member of the orchestra!
This year’s music will include "The Typewriter" by Leroy Anderson (who also played the accordion!), "P. H. Boogie" by the great accordion duo of Bill Palmer and Bill Hughes, and "The Jamaican Rumba" by Arthur Benjamin.
The orchestra rehearses during the festival days (July 8-11, 2015) and never interferes with the competition timing and events. The performance is at the Awards Concert on Saturday afternoon, July 11. I look forward to seeing YOU there. Come join the fun!
For further information: www.ameraccord.com
Welcome to the 2015 ATG Festivalby Betty Jo Simon, ATG President
|Dear ATG Members and Friends,|
Welcome to ATG’s website. We‘re glad you’re here.! While you peruse the website, click on the photo above to enter our 2015 Festival page where you can find information on our upcoming 75th Anniversary Festival in Lisle (Chicago), IL, on July 22-25, 2015. The Board of Directors is working hard to prepare for this splendid Diamond Anniversary at the Hyatt Lisle. This hotel is beautiful and very accommodating. The rooms include a full breakfast buffet, free Internet and parking for $105 plus tax per single occupancy per night. We hope you will make every effort to attend and stay in the hotel as this helps us meet our minimum in order to have use of the beautiful ballroom and meeting rooms that we have so enjoyed in the past.
ATG is honored to present Yuri Shishkin, from Russia as our featured guest artist. Yuri has won numerous international competitions in Germany and Italy, including ATG’s 1990 Anthony Galla-Rini International Competition. He is a most sought after musician promoting the bayan and the accordion by doing lectures and master classes in major cities around the world and at international festivals and competitions. You will not want to miss this rare opportunity to hear Yuri in concert in the USA!
ATG welcomes Frank Petrilli and his Quartet. Frank, a native of Los Angeles, CA has been playing professionally since the age of 16. He is not only accomplished on the accordion but also on the B3 Organ and Saxophone. He has performed at many of the major accordion festivals and clubs in the U.S. as well as on TV, and on several important venues in Europe.
Our own former President and current Board member, Stas Venglevski, will also be a featured soloist during the Festival as well as performing as the soloist with the Festival Orchestra on one of his newest compositions, Rondo-Fantasy, written especially for this event. Popular Joe Natoli returns with his outstanding command of the Roland V Accordion. Many others will soon be added so keep checking the website for updates. As usual, several outstanding workshops will be announced and an always-interesting display room for instruments, music, recordings, and accessories will be set up.
Once again, ATG will have Dr. Helmi Harrington with her display of rare instruments; she will also present the lecture/demonstration of these instruments, for which she is very well-known. If you haven’t heard this, you absolutely must set aside time for it this year!
ATG wants to encourage new composers for the accordion and is featuring an original accordion composition concert on Friday afternoon. Included will be several guest artists, ensembles and the winners of the original accordion composition category offered this year. The ATG competitions provide an excellent opportunity for students to excel by preparing for a contest! ATG is offering solo, duet, and ensemble categories and even some with cash prizes. There is something for everyone. All competition rules, regulations and forms are listed under “Competition Information” tab on this website.
You will want to play a part in this year’s Festival Orchestra under the direction of Joan C. Sommers. Our goal for the Festival Orchestra is to have at least one member from every state in the union participate. You can help spread the word to all of your accordion friends throughout the USA that this very special Festival Orchestra wants them to come represent their state. Let’s see how many states we can have represented in this always popular orchestra!
Since this is a very special Festival, I anticipate that we will fill our room block very quickly, so I recommend you make your hotel reservations as soon as possible. Be sure to mention ATG when making reservations. The ATG offers many wonderful opportunities for every one of all ages and abilities, professional or amateur. You can support ATG by spreading the word! We look forward to seeing you in July!
Betty Jo Simon
Jac & Co’s 2015 American Tour – USAby Rob Howard
|Jac & Co are the French accordion/vocals duo Jacques and Corinne Pellarin. Last year they had a successful tour of the USA, and in April and May return for some more appearances. |
The French magazine ‘Le Progrès’ said: “They bring back almost a century of the traditional French 'chanson' songs like those of Édith Piaf, Yves Montand and Francis Lemarque.
With just voice and accordion, Jacques & Co captivate audiences and transport them to the dance halls and street side cafés of France's yesteryears!”
April 3rd, 7th, 10th, 15th, 17th (with the Star chef George Perrier), 21st, 24th, 28th - French restaurant ‘A la Maison’, Ardmore, Philadelphia
April 19th - with Andrea Carlson & Love Police, Café Vivaldi, New York
April 26th - Corinthians Yacht Club,
April 30th and May 1st - Auberge chez François, Great Falls (VA), near Washington
May 2nd and 3rd - Wine & Food Festival, National Harbour
May 5th to 10th - Jac & Co recording session & concert in C.A.S Studio, Vineland, New Jersey
May 11th - French restaurant ‘Pot au feu’, Providence, Rhode Island
May 14th - Gateway Lodge, Pennsylvania
May 29th – concert at Cooperage project, Honesdale
‘Open Mic’ @ Brooklyn Accordion Club, New York – USAby Rob Howard
|Brooklyn Accordion Club’s next meeting will be an ‘Open Mic’ afternoon. This takes place on Sunday April 12th, 2pm until 4pm. All are welcome. Beginners/first timers are especially welcome!|
The Spring issue of the club magazine SqueeZine! will be available at this meeting. Contributors include Dr William Schimmel Charita Patamikakorn, Patrice Escandon, Jeanne Velonis, Benedikt Neuroth, T.C. Costello, Rebecca, Rob Reich, Tony Kovatch, Joe De Clemente, Andrew Cordle, Denise Koncelik, Evan Perry-Giblin, and Robert Duncan.
Brooklyn Accordion Club meets at 61 Local, 61 Bergen St., Brooklyn, New York.
For further information email: firstname.lastname@example.org
21st AAA Master Class and Concert Seriesby Rita Barnea
|The 2015 American Accordionists' Association (AAA) Master Class and Concert Series with Dr. William Schimmel as Moderator/Curator will be held August 7-9, 2015 at the Tenri Cultural Institute - 43A West 13th St - between 5 and 6th Aves. |
This year's theme will be "Chock Full O"Learnin'" with three consecutive days of seminars, *workshops, lectures, discussions and performances with accordionist-composer-author-philosopher, Dr. William Schimmel as moderator/curator. Each afternoon workshop will feature up to five performers who wish to receive advice, criticism and tools for improvement from the presenters, the audience and Dr. Schimmel.
Master Classes - $25 • Concerts - $30.
Entire Day – Includes Master Class and Concert -$50 Entire Weekend - $125 Master classes at 3 PM - Concerts at 7 PM
For further information visit the website: American Accordionists' Association
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‘Accordions Around the World’, New York – USAby Rob Howard
|‘Accordions Around the World’ is made up of accordionists of different musical genres that play in pockets of Bryant Park, Manhattan, New York. Many cultures and genres have been represented in the two years the series has been running. While the series is called, ‘Accordions Around the World’, the organisers are interested in all free-reed instruments: concertinas, bandeones, shengs, harmoniums, etc. included! |
Picture right: Les Poissons Voyageurs, a Montreal group performing at Bryant Park.
Here are details on the 2015 series:
The weekly event will take place on Wednesdays in July and August 2015
Accordionists will play from 6 - 8pm
Multiple accordionists play each week in different parts of the park (note: not on the stage.)
Each accordionist will receive between 1-2 gigs over the course of the season.
Accordionists must have at least an hour’s worth of polished material.
Payment offer is $150 per gig.
Solo accordionists are sought for the following dates: July 1st, July 8th, July 15th, July 22nd, July 29th, August 5th, August 12th, August 19th, and August 26th.
If you are interested, please send:
Your name (i.e., how you would like to be billed in the program)
Your website (if you have one)
A sample of you playing
What is the two to four-word description of the style of music you'll be playing? Since this is ‘Accordions Around the World’, the description should include a region of the world and/or a musical genre. (E.g. Cumbia from Colombia; Blues and Rock-n-roll; Zydeco from Louisiana; French musette + Waltz)
The turn-around is quick; the organizer, Ariana Hellerman, will be in touch soon to let you know if we're able to accommodate everyone who is interested.
Bryant Park is a 9.603-acre privately managed public park located in the New York City borough of Manhattan. It is located between Fifth and Sixth Avenues and between 40th and 42nd Streets in Midtown Manhattan.
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