4th December 1998
|This weeks news||Weekly Poll|
If you have recently composed or arranged music for the accordion, email us a short article about it and we will publish it right here on the Weekly News! We will include your email address for further information and details of how to purchase it.
There are many accordionists busy performing Christmas concerts. It's a great time of the year to promote the accordion to the general public and to show what the instrument is truly capable of. Send us news of where and when you are performing, and include humorous stories that may have happened to you lately so we in turn can share it with accordionists worldwide.
Wayne Knights Webmaster
|Last Weeks Question was:|
|Who is the sexiest male accordionist in the world today?|
|Jean Louis Noton and Cesare Chiachiaretta gained the most votes. Close behind were Sandy Brechin, Gary Dahl, Jury Dranga, Richard Galliano, Claudio Jacomucci, Guy Klusevsek, Ross Maio, Corrado Rojac, Johan Kullberg and Jorgen Sundequist.|
|Popcorn Orchestra - Germany|
|Christmas Party Program - South Africa|
|Accordionists go to War - Scotland|
|Noton Relaxes After Successful USA Tour|
|Deep Listening - USA|
|Film Star Endorsement for Scottish Group|
|Forro Show - Brazil|
|Zydeco Knockouts - USA|
|Examination Music Concert - China|
|Wine Celebration - Russia|
|Accordionists on TV - Japan|
|Accordion Director Passes Away - France|
|Hard Chargin' Accordionist - USA|
|Irish Music Concert - Japan|
|Zydeco Christmas - USA|
|Embassy Performance - Thailand|
|Charity Concerts - UK|
|Accordion Reunion - New Zealand|
Contributed by Uli Ebner
The Schlüchttal-Akkordeon Orchestra will celebrate their 30th birthday with a different style of concert on December 12th and 13th. They have designed the stage to look like a large television so the audience will feel like they are sitting at home while they eat popcorn. The orchestra plans to perform music to accompany videos filmed especially for the concert.
The compere for the evening will announce various events that have taken place over the history of the orchestra. Lots of fun and enjoyable music is planned.
|Popular South African group "Duo 2000" which includes
Sergio Zampolli (accordion) and Amarillie Ackermann (harp) were asked
recently to put together a Christmas party program for a private function.
They incorporated their unique blend of harp and accordion with singers
Ann-Jeanette Benson and Albertus Engelbrecht to provide a well received
40 minute performance. Pieces included "Mon coeur s'ouvre a ta voix" (Softly
awakes my heart) from "Samson and Delilah" and "Tea for Two" from "No
The event was so successful they have decided to incorporate the singers with their performances more frequently.
|The Scottish Daily Record newspaper recently published
an article about accordionists that are at war over claims the instrument
is no different from a Hammond organ! There was fury when plans were revealed
by The Scottish Qualifications Authority to scrap the piano accordion
category in school music exams as they believed "the accordion was no
different to an electronic organ like a Hammond." Among those who attacked
the move was Jimmy Shand junior who said "I can't see why they are doing
this at a time when the accordion is becoming more popular." Many others
believe it is a betrayal of Scottish culture, saying Ceilidhs, country
dances, Mods, weddings, clubs and countless broadcasts wouldn't be worth
a "hooch" without the accordion.
To add to the debate, some players of the button box claimed the SQA was right. Fergie McDonald, founder member of the Button Box for Scotland group, said "The exam board is 100 per cent within its rights. The proper place for the piano accordion is at the bottom of the Minches!"
Contributed by Holda Paoletti-Kampl
French accordionist Jean-Louis Noton found a little time to relax after his successful USA tour with tour organiser and concert partner Peter Soave, a bottle of Chateau Battaillet 1964 and a cigar Montecristo Nr. 1. Noton performed concerts in Texas, Michigan, Wisconsin and Ohio with other artists including Mady Dessimoulie, Guillaume Hodeau and Julien Labro. Noton also held masterclasses in Detroit.
On December 12th accordionist Pauline Oliveros will present a Deep Listening workshop at The Music Ensemble Room, Mills College, Oakland. Deep Listening is a practice created by Pauline to enhance creative work which is practiced and discussed in the United States, Canada, Mexico, South America, Asia, and Europe where Pauline has taught and travelled extensively.
The workshop will include relaxation and breathing exercises, listening and guided meditations, a Sonic Meditation or Deep Listening Piece, feedback, and processing.
Pauline's work is well known through performances, broadcasts, personal appearances, recordings, and scholarly writings. Pauline has created a unique style of accordion playing using just intonation and extended techniques. She is a graduate of San Francisco State College and holds an honorary Doctor of Music from the University of Maryland.
For further information phone: + 1 510 222 8442
|The Daily Telegraph (Australia) included an article recently about Scottish funk band "Capercaillie" who are currently touring Australia. The group, which includes accordionist Donald Shaw, believe that since popular film star Sean Connery called them "extraordinary", they have attracted younger, more diverse crowds. He said "audiences changed dramatically after the high-profile endorsement". When they first performed in Australia a few years ago they played for an older crowd who they believe went away confused as their music isn't the traditional sing-along sound people thought they were going to hear.|
JJ Caillier & the Zydeco Knockouts have recently released their latest CD "On The Way To The Top" which includes zydeco tracks. Accordionist JJ Caillier has been following in the footsteps of his late father J.J. Caillier Snr who produced early releases of Boo Zoo Chavis, and the Grammy Award winning album "Country Boy" by Clifton Chenier. The Knockouts latest CD includes "Squeeze It", "Take Your Shoes Off" and "She's Trouble".
For further information email: email@example.com
Contributed by Li Cong
On November 21st the Shanghai Accordion Association organised a concert of examination test music at the Shanghai Cinema. This was held especially for students entering accordion examinations. This year the association received nearly 3,000 examination entries and over 600 students attended the concert.
Performers included Mao Rui Yin, Hu Yun Yun, Wang Cong Yu, Fang Ling and Wu Yu. Exam level requirements were discussed and Jiang Gui He and Li Cong gave a lesson demonstration.
Contributed by Tatiana Lanchtchikova
On November 19th the St. Petersburg Musette Ensemble performed for the "Beaujolais" wine celebration at the popular French restaurant "Le Bistro Francais", St. Petersburg. To open the celebrations accordionists Vladimir Ushakov and Sergei Likhachjev played solos and duets. Following this, the St. Petersburg Musette Ensemble performed to an enthusiastic audience, who sang and danced. Their 2½ hour program included French tunes such as "A Paris", "Pigalle", "Retour de Hirondelles", Sous Le Ciel de Paris" and "Boulevards of Paris" as well as some jazz compositions including "All the Things You Are" and "Desafinado".
They have been invited to play at the restaurant again in January 1999.
Contributed by Toru Katou
The accordion and concertina have been seen on Japanese television advertisements recently. Popular accordionist Coba (Yasuhiro Kobayashi) has been playing on the advertisement for Nomura Asset Management Toushin Plaza.
Another advertisement for "Kinu-Neri" (Silk Touch well whipped chocolate) features a large pink concertina played by an actress who stands in the sky singing "nette, nette, nette, nette" (whip up). The movement of the instrument bellows symbolises the whipping.
In a NHK TV drama "Yanchakure", actor Akira Enomoto plays the concertina. Akira had lessons from Fumio Yoshida who plays melodeons and concertinas in Japan.
Contributed by Danielle Pauly
Mr Jean-Pierre Crosio, director of Fratelli Crosio accordion makers passed away recently after a long illness. He was buried on November 27th at Joinville le Pont, a small town in the vicinity of Paris.
The Business Wire (USA) recently included an article on accordionist Buckwheat Zydeco's upcoming album "Trouble", which is due for release in January 1999. Album track "Hard Chargin' " is featured three times in Adam Sandler's new movie, "The Waterboy," and is included on the Hollywood Records' soundtrack album.
Early reviews have been positive with comments such as "a burst of (Creole) mayhem, a roiling gumbo of zydeco, funk, R&B, blues and rip-roaring rollick and roll."
Buckwheat Zydeco will commence a 20th Anniversary Tour in January 1999 following the release of "Trouble".
Contributed by Toru Katou
On December 6th a traditional Irish concert will be held at the "Osakashi Chuo Kokaido" (Osaka Central Public Center Hall). Accordionist Ohgaki Yoshio will perform with his band "Sainak". Accordionists from the Osaka Shin'on Accordion Society will also perform at this free concert.
For further information phone: + 81 6-231-0631
| Bennie & the Swamp Gators (including accordionist Dennis
Gurwell) will perform on December 12th at the annual Les Bon Temps Creole
Social Club Christmas dinner and dance in Gardena, Southern California.
The band plays Zydeco rhythms from Southern Louisiana, Cajun melodies
mixed with Caribbean and African rhythms, blues and swing.
For further information phone: + 1 310-639-2193
Graham Geddes and his Scottish dance band performed two concerts at the
British Embassy in Bangkok recently. Their first performance was from
midnight to 6am at the Bangkok St Andrews Ball in the Shangri La Hotel
for 640 people. The group enjoyed performing dance music and popular reels.
Following this the band played a concert which featured tunes like "Leaving Lerwick Harbour" and then the "Scots Guards" marched and played along with the band to various well known Scots tunes.
Graham is currently working on a new CD of popular Scottish dance music.
| The Sentinel Paper (England) recently included an article
on the North Staffs Accordion Club that organised a charity event at the
Kidsgrove Town Hall in aid of "BBC Children In Need" and the "Kidsgrove
Day Service". The club's 40-piece accordion band performed a repertoire
of English and Welsh songs including pieces from Broadway shows.
Their Publicity officer Betty Nixon said "We wanted to support both a national and local charity and were informed of an appeal to raise money for a hydrotherapy pool for people with disabilities who use Kidsgrove Day Service."
Contributed by Shiela Haigh
The Pakuranga Accordionaires held their 25th Anniversary Reunion on November 22nd in Auckland. Past members from Australia and all over New Zealand arrived for the celebrations with three original members still playing with the orchestra today. Over 150 people enjoyed an evening of accordion solos, duets and a performance by the current orchestra.
http://www.strasser-harmonikas.com Austrian manufacturer of top quality diatonic accordions.
http://www.accordions.com/maestro An award winning accordion duo from Russia.