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Selecting an Accordion Teacher

Want to sound like a pro? Then learn from a pro! It's that simple.

Learning the accordion is challenging -- why not give yourself every advantage? Overcoming poor habits after they are learned is next to impossible, so learn things correctly in the first place. Enjoy the thrill of rapid correct learning and playing your best with lessons from a qualified professional teacher.

Pro Qualifications

What pro qualifications should you look for?

You will get the best results (which is the whole point of lessons!) with a teacher who:

  1. Is not only a solid performer themselves, but a true virtuoso performer
  2. Has decades of teaching success at all levels, beginner through professional
  3. Has a formal background in music theory and proven skills in composition and arranging
  4. Teaches a broad range of musical styles

These four skills areas should each be achieved at a professional level. Given the availability of accordion teachers online, you can afford to be selective. Be sure to evaluate your teacher before you choose.

Caution Signs

There are warning signs to look for with accordion lessons:

Accordion Teacher Qualification Checklist
for Gary Dahl


Widely known as a virtuoso accordionist and accomplished band leader


Decades of experience at all levels, not just beginners. Gary's students have won national and state competitions as well as achieving professional status.


A graduate of the University of Washington specializing in composition and theory. He has an impressive body of work including hundreds of individual arrangements, original compositions, and more than a dozen books currently in publication. He literally wrote book!


Has written books and teaches covering jazz, Cajun, zydeco, Latin, polka, ragtime, waltz, tango, and more.