Oklahoma City Accordion Club www.OklahomaAccordionClub
Dick Albreski: The accordion and Dick Albreski are almost synonymous. Since the age of six, Dick has played this magical instrument. It has become a very integral part of his life. His love of the instrument comes alive when Dick applies his fingers to the keyboard. With smooth articulation and dynamics as required, Dick will take simple melodies and transform them into memorable classics. His music will transcend into the audience where he works to become part of them. His experience has taught him how to judge and respond to all audiences. His love of ethnic music is evident in all of his performances. Growing up on the shores of Lake Erie gave him a cultural background that lived to enjoy their ethnic roots. This feeling continues to become stronger as new opportunities arise.
Dick is comfortable playing solo or with a group. His talent has allowed him to play at many weddings, dances, restaurants, social clubs, and conventions, anywhere an accordion was or is needed. He is also comfortable doing accordion workshops.
The acoustic accordion will always be his “main squeeze”, however; today he does play the midi-accordion to enhance the acoustic sound. He programs a balance that allows the acoustic accordion to be the predominant sound and the midi, an added value. This allows him to play his music with a true accordion presentation. Dick not only plays the accordion, but also repairs and teaches the instrument as well. You could say he knows the instrument from the inside out.
Dick will please you with his interpretive ethnic style and allow you to enjoy his music in a pleasant presentation. He has played for decades and will continue to share his gift with you in years to come.
Markus Baggio - Digital/Improv Coordinator: Round Rock, Texas www.Facebook.com/NAA1986
Combined Presenters Digital Workshops:
Welcome to the Digital-Acoustic Suite (Wed. 6:30 pm):
Feel free to join us for some talk, socialize, and networking. Make new friends or get refresh your acquaintances from last year.
BK7m Arranger - Tips & Tricks (Friday, 10 am): Markus will explain how he is using his Roland BK7m arranger module with his Roland FR-8x V-Accordion, showcasing basic tips and tricks about performance lists, sounds & styles, Melody Intelligent and much more.
Markus Baggio started playing the acoustic accordion at the age of 8 and played in Germany in many Accordion Orchestras and ensembles. He was also a founding member of the “Landes Jugend Akkordeon Orchester Rheinland Pfalz” (State Youth Accordion Orchestra Rhineland-Palatinate) in 1986. Besides he played in many Orchestras all over Germany. After moving to the States in 2007 he stopped playing accordion but restarted in 2011 after listening to Richard Noels performances on YouTube. Ever since he got trapped in the digital world of accordion, playing a Roland FR-8x solo or as a one-man-band with the Roland BK7m arranger module. He still grabs his more than 30-year Hohner Morino VS and plays acoustic. Markus is also the secretary and newsletter editor for the Central Texas Accordion Association in Austin, TX and is managing the Digital Suite of the 2019 National Accordion Convention.
1. Understanding Sets, Programs, and How to Approach Them (Thursday, 9 am): Markus (8x), Ron (7x), and Michael (4x) - Terminology will be explained and a group of users will discuss their approach and strategy on how they program sets and user programs. The differences between different instruments like the FR-4x, FR-7x, and FR-8x will be discussed as well.
Sabine Baggio and Plato:
2. Breaking the Ice (Digital User Group (Friday, 11 am)): A group of users will explain their experience starting with a Roland accordion, what were the obstacles, what were the wins? This session is intended for accordionists who are considering a digital accordion
3. Digital Sheet Music (Friday, 3:30): Are you still hauling tons of binders to your gig? Joe and Markus will discuss their approach using sheet music software. Different devices (Android, Windows) and software will be discussed.
Feel free to bring your iPads, Androids or Windows tablets.
Round Rock, TX
Digital Suite Co-host with Markus.
NAA Administrator site manager for www.FaceBook.com/NAA1986
Sabine writes: I always loved music, I think it is good for your soul. I loved dancing, my husband has a great rhythm feeling when he is playing Accordion, but unfortunately not at dancing. I never learned an instrument.
I didn't know much about all the diverse music styles you can play with accordions until I met my husband Markus.
Now I am one of the lucky person, that can have her own private concerts whenever I want.
As Plato stated: "Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”
Dallas, Texas www.NickBallarini.com
Creating The Ultimate One Person Band (Friday, 9 am.):
Nick will show what are the required components for a successful Performance. The workshop will cover acoustic and digital accordions, rhythm and sound modules.
Successful one-person bands need the following three components:
1. Acoustic Accordion
3. Sound Modules
Conventioneers will be holding accordions and participating
accordionist, pianist, and band leader is one of the world's most versatile musicians. Nick plays for weddings, corporate events and jazz festivals as a pianist and band leader, as well as playing his accordion at Irish, French, Italian and German themed events. His repertoire ranges from classical to pop to the many ethnic styles associated with the accordion. During Nick's career he has played with many prominent musicians such as Luciano Pavarotti, Mel Torme and The Chieftans. He has become a favorite of accordion clubs around the country. Nick is available to play solo or with a band.
Visit with Nick Ballarini in Longhorn I:
He is an authorized accordion dealer for many brands, many accordions are featured and played in that display area.
Coordinator and Boss of the "Crazy Hat Dance Party
" on Friday evening (7:30 pm. - Ballroom
Bring your hat and join everyone at our FUN dance night. Click to View CzHDP Flier
This event will be filled with a variety of dances from around the world with musical entertainment performed by our very own talented conventioneers. We have some amazing talent so you won't want to miss this night. If you prefer not to dance, come anyway, sit back and enjoy the show. Remember to wear your unique, crazy hat!
Tempe, Arizona www.facebook.com/Paul.Betken
Practical playing tips for making your performance of Fakebook songs unique through embellishments, improvising and individualized creativity. (Friday, 1:30 pm.)
Mike Borelli and Roland Paquette
An introduction and demonstration in enhancing your simple Fakebook lead sheet songs. Paul will distribute a handout of pre-chosen song sheets. Each sheet will contain the original Facebook version together with a more enhanced version. Each enhanced version is meant to contain variations, ideas and musical concepts which Paul has acquired from his years of experience and performance. The enhanced lead sheet versions range from simple to semi-advanced. Paul will explain the apprentice method of learning where the student is personally handed the artistic craft of musical creativity from a master artist. He will demonstrate some of the musical concepts and song enhancements shown in the handout. You will learn some of those things he has learned along the way and how you can incorporate them into your playing too. You can take the song sheets home for practice and learning. The goal of the workshop is to show and tell some of the tips which we have all heard but never quite understood.
Originally from Chicago, Paul Betken performed all over the Chicago-land metro area for many years. Now, residing in Tempe, AZ for the last 13 years, he enjoys casual engagements and jam sessions all around town. Paul keeps active performing at local music venues, national events and festivals. Select clips of his performances are also available on YouTube.
His past concert appearances include the Las Vegas International Accordion Convention 2010, 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2018; Florida Smash, Southeast Accordion Association, Orlando, Florida, November, 2012; Cotati Accordion Festival, Cotati, CA, August, 2014; Cotati Accordion Scholarship Concert, Redwood Café, Cotati, CA, August, 2015, 2017 and 2018; National Accordion Association Convention Concert, Dallas, 2014; 2015; 2018; 78th ATG Festival, Lisle, Illinois, 2017. He participated in the Mesa Accordion Event 2012, 2013, and 2014; 1st Runner-up, Senior Division, Roland Accordion Festival Competition (2012); the “Jazz Series” at Sacred Grounds, Phoenix, AZ, “A Tribute to Leon Sash” July 2012; the Opa Life Cafe Jazz Series, Tempe, Arizona, 2016 to present and THE NASH, Phoenix, Arizona, November 4, 2018. Paul has played in concert for many accordion organizations including the North Hollywood, CA Accordion Club, July 2012; Silicon Valley Accordion Club, San Jose, CA, January, 2015, the Chicago Accordion Club, Elmhurst, Illinois, July, 2017 and the Arizona Accordion Club.
He has given numerous national accordion workshops at national events including the National Accordion Association Convention, Dallas, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017; International Accordion Convention, Las Vegas, NV, June, 2015; 2018; ATG Festival, Lisle, Illinois 2017; and at the Cotati Accordion Festival, Cotati California, August 2017.
PUBLICATIONS: "JAZZ ACCORDION ARRANGEMENTS” with CD, Paul Betken Productions, copyright 2017.
CD RELEASES: “PAUL’S TURN – JAZZ ACCORDION” Paul Betken Productions, copyright 2014. Achieved international recognition and “BEYOND MY COMFORT ZONE – ECLECTIC JAZZ ACCORDION” Paul Betken Productions, copyright 2018 as recently featured on WKKC, Kirkland Community College radio, the Midwest’s pre-eminent jazz radio station. Both Cd’s are available for purchase at the CD Baby Store. https://store.cdbaby.com/cd/PaulBetken
(Fort Worth area)
Demonstration Lesson on how to teach accordionists the art of performing a single musical selection using 12 different key signatures. Saturday, 11:00 am in Salon B
Nick Bratkovich: Tulsa, Oklahoma www.NickBratkovic.GermanFest
International Folk Dance Music (Friday starting at 7:30 pm): Nick will serve as the Master of Ceremonies and will be providing international folk music at the Friday Night Dance Party. You are invited to come and listen to the music and learn dances from all over the world, as performed by Nick and taught by members of the Dallas International Folk Dancers.
Nick Bratkovich was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and is the son of Serbian immigrants who came to the United States following World War II. He began playing the accordion at age 6 and started his first Serbian band at age 13. In time he expanded his repertoire to include ethnic folk music from many Balkan, Western European, and Middle Eastern countries. He has performed at international folk dance events throughout the United States and Canada.
Since retiring from the U.S. Postal Service, Nick enjoys recording music in his home studio and continues to perform at ethnic folk music festivals in Oklahoma, Texas, and Wisconsin. He provides popular American music at many retirement centers in the Tulsa area, and he is also a member of the Tulsa Klezmer Band.
Nick and his wife Nancy have lived in Tulsa for the past 13 years. They have three children and two granddaughters living in Oklahoma and Texas.
Santa Barbara, California www.GailCampanella.Facebook.com
Performance - Connecting with the Audience Friday: 10:00 am.
Non-Oom-Pah + Improvisation
Ideas and Suggestions for enhancing the performer's and the audience's experience. Before - During - After
Demonstration - followed by input from participants
Gail has been performing on accordion since shortly after beginning lessons at the age of 10. Her Italian grandfather was her biggest booster. From community parades to baby showers to club meetings and church functions, she was often preparing for a performance or a competition. Gail majored in piano in college while continuing to study accordion. Her senior recital was performed on both accordion and piano. Recently, she has been guest artist for accordion clubs in Santa Barbara, San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C., San Diego (in 2019), in addition to the Cotati Accordion Fest, Las Vegas International Accordion Convention, the Orange County Big Squeeze, and the Accordion Teacher Guild (ATG). Gail gives private lessons in accordion and piano, and is currently involved in teaching accordion classes to children in two Santa Barbara elementary schools. Gail’s solo CD entitled, Discovery (2016), is dedicated to her family and life on the farm in Weldona, Colorado.
Saturday: 3:30 pm Salon B
Class Lesson Plan (link)
Improv Ideas Information (link)
Silent Night Chords (link)
Come to the just about the last second of the last minute of the last hour of the last day of this year's acoustic Convention Workshops. Alternate non-Ooh-Pah Bass ideas – AND IMPROV ideas, using easy Christmas Songs (try to memorize Silent Night) as a model. Explore IMPROV by: Location/Octave, Timbre, Chord, Scale, Note, Secondary Melody Line, Dynamics, Attack, Tempo, Rhythm, etc. Please bring your accordion.
Ed Casper has been playing, on and off, since age seven. Musically, he's been involved with various singing groups including his High School Octet; the MIT Logarhythms, Choral Society, and European Tour Group; Columbia's St. Paul's Chapel Choir (Ed earned his PhD in Organic Chemistry at Columbia); the Pittsburgh Oratorio Society; the Boston Chorus Pro Musica; and various church choirs. While not on the acoustic guitar or piano, he's busy with numerous accordion/singing performances for local Assisted Living groups, community festivals, competitions, along with leading a Community Music group (mostly guitar players). Dr. Casper also plays occasionally with the Arkansas Accordion Association.
Jane Christison Knows How to Prepare for a Party!
Lenexa, Kansas www.MusicWithASmile.com
I Love Playing Accordion and So Can You!
(Workshop) Friday, 2:30 pm.
Playing the accordion is what Jane loves to do,
Smiling and squeezing and singing for you!
But what if you’re tired and feeling a bit blue
About playing “Beer Barrel Polka” until you are one hundred and two?
Come to Jane’s workshop, and before she’s all through,
She’ll give you ideas, some things you can do,
To keep your playing interesting, to keep having fun,
Come to Jane’s workshop to learn how that’s done!
Norman Seaton says: While Jane loves every performance, one of her favorite workshop presentations is "Planning and Playing Programs for Seniors.” She has played over 1,500 programs for senior citizens. Jane will be talking about this as well as some of the other occasions she’s played for in her career as a professional accordionist!
Jane Christison is an accordionist and singer known for her trademarked “Music With A Smile®.” Her performances are filled with personality and an enthusiasm for playing the accordion that shines through. Jane enjoys sharing her music with seniors in upbeat and engaging 45-minute “Music With A Smile®” programs at retirement communities and nursing homes.
Jane has fun wearing costumes and playing music for theme parties, open house events, conventions and other celebrations. Jane also stays busy introducing a whole new generation to the joy of music by writing songs for children and performing as Janie Next Door®.
Jerry Cigler: Chicago, ILL www.JerryAndPaul.Youtube
Jazz Block Chord Improvising (Thursday 11 am.):
Jerry will show how to improvise in block chords and chord inversions, using rhythm patterns, improvising with substitute chords to enrich your musical playing
Jerry Cigler is perhaps one of the finest Jazz musicians in the Accordion World. His originality, taste, and technique, have established him as a '' top level player". His ability to perform 5 part block chords using just his right hand on the piano accordion, coupled with his unparalleled use of the free bass in a jazz context, enable him to render sounds impossible by any other player alive today. His use of substitute chords, open harmony, counter-point, blistering fast single note runs, complex chordal structures on the left hand (including using his thumb), and sophisticated arrangements, make him stand out amongst the crowd.
Jerry was born in Cleveland, Ohio and studied with a few teachers before meeting the great Johnny Sulin. Sulin was quite famous in Cleveland and was an amazing talent. Johnny is remembered for his unrivaled technique and incredible arrangements, many improvised on the spot. Jerry's repertoire included classical as well as popular standards and by his late teen years, he was established as a professional musician performing at many local places. Jerry then began tutelage under the amazing Leon Sash of Chicago, where Jerry eventually moved. Under Leon, Jerry began his deep study of jazz as it relates to the accordion. Jerry went on to record with Leon as well as releasing his own album in the 70's.
2019 Workshop and Presentation:
1. Teaching Music with a Passion! Saturday 2:30 pm.
By Norman and Sharon Seaton (Doctors of Education)
Elena Fainshtein has developed an action-driven technique for teaching music to students of all ages and ethnic backgrounds.
Elena's teaching style involves all kinds of movements, stories, flash cards, and symbols. Adults and young children alike enjoy Elena's teaching techniques while learning more music in a simplified method. Words cannot describe her teaching; you must experience it!
The young boy demonstrates that the musical note "G", (as in A-B-C-D-E-F-G) as an exciting ending to learning the keys on a keyboard. This is just one example that demonstrates the enthusiasm shown by individuals taking music lessons from Elena!
Elena Fainshtein is a professional musician.
Who should attend Elena's "Passion" workshop? Everyone including teachers, beginning students, and experienced musicians who want to refresh their basic skill sets in the musical world! Don’t bring your instrument to this session: Just bring your smile, you will laugh, you will play the games and without notice, you will learn a lot!
2. Concert by Musical Expressions Studio Orchestra Saturday 3:30 pm.
The Musical Expression Studio that is based in Plano, Texas, will be showcasing students of all ages on Saturday at 3:30 pm. This session will include both band selections and solos.
Testimonial for Elena’s Training Session:
Music theory is, by definition, a cerebral discipline. But Elena understands that people, regardless of their age, are more than just intellectual beings. Her holistic approach to teaching music theory engages the entire person. By incorporating students’ hands, bodies, emotions and senses into the learning process, Elena makes difficult concepts easy to grasp and remember. As an adult student, I have benefited greatly from the wisdom of her technique.
~Tricia Greene, Accordion Student
Elena's musical instrument of choice is the Bayan (also known as the chromatic button accordion), she started to play it at the age of five. She attended a school for Musically Gifted Children in Minsk, Belarus.
At the age of 15 she was accepted to Musical College in Minsk, graduating with highest honors. After music college she attended the Belorussian Academy of Music and graduated in 1987.
Elena has been teaching piano and accordion for over 30 years, giving lessons in three different languages. She worked with children and adults in Belarus, then Israel, and in the United States for the last 15 years. Plano, Texas is her current home and she works in her private home studio, called “Musical Expressions”, where she provide private Accordion and button (bayan) accordion lessons, including accordion Skype lessons. She also established, leads, and conducts various accordion orchestras.
Elena loves to share her passion for music with everyone!
Jessica is the founder and Master of Ceremonies
of the "Circle of Champions.
" Thursday, 7:30 pm.
Circle of Champions takes a look back in celebration of the music and artist! Join us as we are “reelin’ in the years, stowing away the time” as the song goes with a smaller group of champions on an expanded program, a throwback to our first Circle of Champions. Enjoy the journey as we take you back and entertain you our best songs.....your favorites and give you some insight into what makes these songs so special to us and to audiences across the world and across time.
IDEAS Founders: Michael Soloway
(left) and Joseph Natoli
Fact: Digital accordions are here to stay!
Key vendors may change throughout the continuum of digital instrument sales, but this is the 21st century, if anything is certain, digital technology will only grow and evolve going forward. Therefore Joseph Natoli and Michael Soloway have created the IDEAS organization and the related Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/383122538854846/ to foster an environment of inclusivity, knowledge sharing, event sharing, and religious fervor for digital instruments and the musical potential they enable us all to exploit.
Gabe Hall-Rodriques: Seattle www.GabeAccordionAZ.com
Linear Jazz Improvisation Workshop: "Accordion Pick Up Lines" Saturday, 9:00 am
The concept of playing linear melodic material in a jazz solo can be heard in so many of the great jazz improvisers of all time. Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman, Frank Marocco, Bud Powell, Barry Harris and so many many more utilize this concept and so can you. We will follow a simple step by step process that allows you to quickly understand and play jazz melodic material on a standard tune. Unlock new potential for your jazz solos. This is a hands on workshop and all participants will be asked to play or sing along. Participants should also print their materials off of the link here https://www.accordionaz.com/copy-of-lessons
Dallas area and Dick Albreski:
Oklahoma City https://www.facebook.com/Greg.Klugiewicz
So… You think you know how to play a Polka? Friday, 1:30 pm. Salon B
Let’s face it, polka music is fun to play!
As much as they have been underrated, clichéd, and joked about, polkas remain a staple of everybody’s repertoire. We all play them. And why not? They are fun, plentiful, and remain extremely popular. This fun and educational workshop explores different techniques and styles.
This workshop will encourage accordionists to play more polkas and utilize some interesting techniques. Complete with correct and incorrect examples, this tutorial explores many techniques needed to play this fun genre. Dick Albreski and Greg Klugiewicz lead this clinic. Both originally hail from “Polka Country” (Northwestern Pennsylvania). Their playing style integrates a unique mixture of Polish/Czech/Cleveland techniques.
Bring your accordion to this class. We will be practicing several techniques including bass tapping, tempo control, bellows “push” , expression, alternative phrasing, and bellows shake.
Celestial Fire (link)
Digital: Orchestrating A New Solo (Thursday 2:30 pm. Digital Suite):
Digital Voicing will be shown and demonstrated to a new solo composed by Gordon: "Celestial Fire", and a second great solo In Dreams from The Lord of The Rings. Gordon is a strong promoter of blending acoustic reeds with digital voices. The music arrangements have suggested practice instrumentation added. A list of 50 digital favorite instrument voice patches will be given out to participants and some suggestions on how to mix accordion reed switch registers into layering so that a nice contrast may be achieved in tone, These type classes are very educational for all levels of digital accordion musicianship.
1. Adding Sparkle to a Single Chord (Friday, 1:30 pm. Salon B)
Gordon Kohl will cover adding chords to your solo arrangement. Harmony adds "zest" to any melody, especially when played by a solo instrumentalist like an accordionist. This workshop is interactive and you are encouraged to bring your accordion. We will use 3 - 4 solos to expand usage of harmony. Solos will include Chilly Billy, Tango Time, Fly me to the Moon and Carnival. Gordon will be using the following chord structures: Major 6ths, major 7ths, minor 7ths, and even 9th chords will add that professional sound to these solo arrangements. To properly demonstrate the musical enhancements, he will use popular song examples including: Girl from Ipanema, James Bond, Viennese Waltz, Jazz Time Blues, and Disney Tunes. The final chord progression is always noted as a tool in building a song ending.
2. Articulation and Bellow Control (Friday 2:30 pm. Salon B)
Learning a New Solo: Gordon states: "It is important for me to first read through a melodic solo section to understand ideas such as key, harmony rhythm style, ornamentation, touch marks, tempo, bellow phrasing, dynamics, and reed switches. Once accomplished, I can move on to practice slowly the passages I am reading." He will discuss how fingering can be placed for accurate playability of melody. Adding harmony, ornamentation, such as triplets, frills, tremolos, bellow shakes, chromatic and scale fills and bass solos need attention to fingering and bellows. The music theory is essential to good musicianship. A composer has chosen fills and music points to enhance a song's melody.
Gordon Kohl's Credentials:
Two original solos will be used in class. Active participation is most welcome by accordionists at NAA conventions.
Gordon Kohl: Gordon's playing credentials include TV commercials, videos for projects such as the AIDS Foundation and radio and TV shows, including work with Shirley Jones, Andy Griffith, and the KPBS Radio Ethnic Hour. He has appeared in Las Vegas, at the Hotel del Coronado in San Diego on stage with Mr. TV Accordionist, Myron Floren, and at Jack Murphy Stadium in San Diego for the first July Fourth event.
Trend-Setting Instructor: Gordon has been teaching at his own accordion and piano school since the age of 20, allowing him to stay in touch with changing trends in music education. Students today want to explore ideas of what the accordion left hand can do to add harmony and rhythm to dance styles such as Salsa, Java, Latin Tango and Beguine, as well as jazz, boogie, Zydeco, Klezmer, Tex Mex, Cajun, Musette and classical selections, challenging both students and teacher.
Kohl's Publications include several books of instruction and music, as well as CDs and cassettes of both established tunes and his own originally composed and arranged accordion music. These many years of experience have produced a competent, skilled, dedicated, multi-cultural accordionist.
Alto, Texas https://shelialee.wordpress.com/ https://www.facebook.com/shelia.lee.14
NAA Dance Band 2019 (60s, 70s, 80s songs and even a 2018 song) The practice schedules is listed in the blue area of this page.
The purpose of the NAA Dance Band is to Create a Dance Band from the attendees at the Convention to perform for one (1) set during the Friday Evening "Crazy Hat" Dance Party. There will be 2 to 3 rehearsals – designed to instruct conventioneers on how to perform for dancers and how to be a “DANCE BAND MEMBER”. This is not a music Rehearsal!!! You are expected to already know the music well enough to read it live at a performance. You need to be able to play the simple melody line and a simple chord accompaniment. If chord accompaniment is hard for you – see the chord chart with the music download.
https://SheliaLee.wordpress.com/National-Accordion-Convention-2019 Dance Music/
This participation workshop includes:
Musical Selections for Shelia Lee Workshop and Performance:
- Reinforce chord knowledge (with chord chart to read)
- Meter (speeds) for certain style songs
- Rhythmic requirements for certain style songs
- Set development (when to play slow and when to play fast songs and for how many trips through!)
- Chord accompaniment and solo “hand-off”
- Group signals, relate to the drummer, feature the next soloist, etc.
- Instrumentation, assuming that EVERY attendee will be the ONLY ACCORDIONIST, in any given Dance Band
The Twist: Number 1 Hit in 1960 & 1962 for Chubby Checkers
Remember Me: 2018 Academy Award Winner - Best Original Song from Disney’s “Coco”
Spanish Harlem: Number 10 hit in 1960 Ben E King and on Rolling Stones Top 500 of all times
Could I Have This Dance: Anne Murray Number 1 Country 1980, #33 Pop from Urban Cowboy
Y.M.C.A. – Village People: – 1978 - #2 Billboard Hot 100 #7 VH1’s Greatest Dance Songs
Walking After Midnight: – Patsy Cline – 1957 #2 Country #12 Billboard Hot 100
Barbara Ann: – Beach Boys #2 Billboard Hot 100 - 1965
Da Doo Ron Ron: – The Crystals 1965 Shaun Cassidy 1977 #1 Billboard Hot 100
Up Where We Belong: – 1982 from “An Officer and a Gentleman” #1 Billboard Hot 100
Accordion Music of Latin America Friday, 11:00 am. Salon B
In this workshop we will read through several tunes of varying styles: Tango, Samba, Choro, and Baiao and talk about how to interpreting melodies on the accordion with appropriate accents and articulations within the style. Learn new Left-Hand comping patterns outside of the typical 3/4 and 4/4 patterns and tricks that will further your accordion playing in latin music and beyond. The repertoire will include a closer look at some familiar accordion pieces such as Tico-Tico no Fubá and La Cumparsita.
Please bring your accordion.
Matthais Matzke: Germany www.Matthias-Matzke.com/
Chances of the Digital Accordion (Saturday 11:00):
Matthias Matzke will demonstrate his approach to increase the accordion’s attraction with the help of the digital accordion. He will showcase how to work with different sound and arrangements, talk about access to modern literature and new ways of playing the digital accordion.
Matthias lives in Gingen an der Fils, Germany and was one of the first Jazz Accordion Bachelors in Hans-Günther Kölz’s class at the Hohner Conservatory Trossingen and the Institute of Music at the University Osnabrück. Versed in many musical styles his repertoire reaches from classical music and original works to jazz, pop and rock. Besides solo projects on classical and digital accordion Matthias works as an arranger, composer and songwriter; amongst others for his Crossover Band „Synthonic Rock“ and different duo projects with Leonie Kratz featuring classical soprano and movement.
Milestones of his career are first prizes of numerous national and international contests such as "Deutscher Akkordeon Musikpreis“, "ugend musiziert“, "Roland V-Accordion Festival“ and " Coupe Mondiale“. His musical activity also includes journalism, education and lectureships.
As a soloist, Matthias played works for accordion and symphony orchestra and is a member of Germany’s Federal Accordion Orchestra. Matthias has gained experience in radio and TV shows and played concerts all over the world (Shanghai, Peking, Seoul, Tokyo, Ankara, St. Petersburg, Costa Rica, the USA and Europe).
Matthias Matzke is known as pioneer for the digital accordion and also studied electronic music at the Hohner Conservatory.
Finding modern ways to express music on his instrument has always been his vision. The accordion may sometimes be underestimated - this, however, makes the instrument the more promising in his eyes.
Accordion bellows in’s and outs
Randy is the Room Coordinator for Salon A. He does his own scheduling.
Accordion bellow repairs
Bellow tape repair, bellow corner service, repair bellow leaks, and bellow casket repair
Mike Middleton: Belton, Texas www.Accordions.com/MikeMiddleton/
Middleton's Lesson Plan
Midi Accordion or Roland V-Accordion (Thursday, 3:30 pm.)
Mike will compare the basic capabilities and the usage of a his Titano Midi enhanced acoustic Accordion, and his Roland FR-8x and a new Bugari Evo. What are the differences, what are the commonalities, and when does he choose to play which accordion?
Enhancing Your Acoustic Accordion Music with Midi (Saturday, 2:30 pm.)
Demonstrate a sampling of songs on acoustic accordion and show how adding Midi of various types can change the sound and delivery.
Dr. Mike Middleton, an award-winning Texan accordionist, and will be interacting in various convention activities that includes Midi enhanced Accordion music and other accordion favorites from his recent albums and from his participation at the World Accordion Museum, where he serves as a Board Member.
Mike's music is unique in that he utilizes Midi to enhance and modify his acoustic accordion sound. Selections could include: Ghost Riders in The Sky, The Lone Ranger theme, Red River Valley, Amazing Grace Accordion Variations, Yellow Rose of Texas, San Antonio Rose, and others featured with the 2017 Temple Symphony (Temple, Texas). Mike is always ready to provide 30 minute or 1 hour of polka/waltzes and Texas folk music suitable for dancing. Mike does a lot of events as a MIDI solo.
Harmonizing The American Songbook (Saturday 10 am.)
Eddie Monteiro will show how to find alternate chord changes to enhance performance. This will provide you some basic keyboard theory and will help you building harmonies and beginners tips on improvisation.
Please bring your instrument to follow the session (10 people max, others can only listen)
Eddie Monteiro is an internationally recognized musician and educator with 30 years of musical performance in classical, jazz, dance, theater, cabaret and choral ensembles. He won several accordion championships as a youth and was also the youngest honoree elected to the American Accordionist’s Hall of Fame. The musician recently returned from Italy where he was performing and teaching, and earlier this week he took time to discuss his music and his involvement with the accordion.
Monteiro explained that the instrument itself has often been misrepresented. “The accordion has been maligned far too often in the numerous jokes and cartoons,” he said. “The Lawrence Welk image with Myron Floren showed the accordion but in a somewhat 'corny' musical idiom. In addition, I think there are many accordionists who have continued to play at less than professional level. Others are just so outlandish in their presentations that people take note and think they're great. The accordion, far too often, isn't played for the public in a very positive way.”
Joseph Natoli: Ohio www.JanPressMusic.com
Joseph Natoli and Michael Soloway are founders of IDEAS www.Facebook.Gr8-Ideas. (International Digital Electronic Accordion Society)
Applied Digital Orchestration (Thursday 10 am.)
This workshop will be partial hands on demonstration of developing an orchestration for a musical selection from one of the participants.
1. Developing a plan for your orchestration
2. Choosing the right sound combinations
3. Developing killer UPGs to create your final orchestration
Master workshop with some interaction from the participants
Joseph Natoli, born 1953, makes his home in Northeast Ohio with his wife, JoAnn, and has been a performer and advocate of the accordion since the age of seven. Musically, Joe started his studies with prominent Ohio accordion teacher, the late Mickey Bisciglia of Youngstown, OH, and won the 1972 AAA US Virtuoso Accordion Championship under his tutelage, while placing first runner-up several months later in the Coupe Mondiale world accordion competition in Caracas, Venezuela. More recently, Joe also won the grand prize for the first Roland US V-Accordion Competition held in Los Angeles, California, in 2008.
Joe’s education includes Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in music theory and composition from the University of Toronto Faculty of Music in Toronto, Canada, where he was the first student accepted there to use the free bass accordion as an applied major instrument.
Joe has created dozens of arrangements, especially those in his favorite genre of jazz ballads. But original composition is how Joe spends most of his writing efforts, having written many original pieces in all musical styles and genres for standard and free bass accordion, some of which are performed regularly throughout Europe, Canada, and the US.
: Austin, TX //www.facebook.com/Larry.Nickel.77
Saturday: 3:30 pm. Larry will showcase and the capabilities of a Ketron SD40 arranger module. He will show how to choose styles and instrumentation, variations, rhythms & introductions and endings. He will be using the VIVO2 digital accordion.
Larry Nickel started playing the accordion at the age 8. His performed first professional gigs at the age 15. He played with several bands and solo in Chicago. He started very early with digital instruments in the early 90s with Roland sound modules, moving to Ketron SD3 and now to Ketron SD40. He plays a VIVO2 digital accordion.
Bill Palmer: Houston, Texas www.BillPalmer.com
Workshop Materials: (Print as needed)
Manipulating Tones with Bellows and Foot Pedals (Thursday, 1:30 pm.) Palmer Fr4x Presentation
Bill purchased a Roland FR-4x V-Accordion in 2017 and worked out a few ways to produce the effects as well as to navigate the tonal range of the instrument more easily by adding the FC-300 foot-pedal unit made by Roland. He will be demonstrating how he uses this pedal system to produce those interesting effects that we all know and love.
Bill Palmer will be assisting Debra Peters in her TexMex Workshop.
Bill is a multi-instrumentalist. In addition to the accordion, he also plays banjo, saxophone, bass, mandolin, guitar and a host of other instruments. Because of his connection to the Palmer-Hughes accordion course, Bill has been involved with the accordion for most of his life. In 2011, at the NAA convention, he had a chance to handle a Roland FR-7x, which was the top of the line Roland V-accordion. He saw that it had many interesting possibilities and acquired one a few months later. As he began working with the instrument, he saw that there were several interesting aspects of the sound mechanism. The flexibility of the sound was amazing. Also, if you wanted to play free bass, there were several different systems built in. And it never would go out of tune. It also can produce hundreds of instrumental sounds. But there were also certain disadvantages, one of which was that the instrument was rather heavy.
Rhode Island www.CoryPesaturo.com
Improvisation, Variety of Styles, and Musical Genres (Friday 4:30 pm.):
Cory is known to improvise everywhere on everything and anything.
Let him give you some pointers on how to start improvising over simple tunes, and simple chord changes, and as well, how to hear songs, and be able to play along with them even though you've never heard them. There is a code to music just like computers! (C. Pez, 2019 Styles Workshop would go over the many details of genres of music since most just gloss over them, where to include improvisation techniques, audience involvement tips for various levels of audiences, and how to solo.
Playing with Different Styles: Saturday 1:30 pm
Just because you know a Frank Marocco arrangement does not mean you know a lick about Jazz. Just because you play Nunzio's version of Under Paris Skies does not mean you know anything about French music. Playing a style takes years to understand, let alone master. Cory will take you through over 10 genres, and dive into the details of each, using just one simple song as an example all the way through. The song will transform in groove, ornaments, tempo, key, touch, feel, and many other aspects as it is put through the paces of each genre. By the end, you will have an idea of how to identify certain details in a style, apply them to your playing, and hence, make yourself sound more authentic.
Cory Pesaturo ("C Pez") is on the forefront of the accordion world, pushing the boundaries on multiple fronts of what is possible with the accordion. The only person to ever win a World Championship on all 3 of Acoustic, Digital And Jazz Accordion, and the only accordion graduate of the prestigious New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, MA. In 2017, Pesaturo became a Guinness World Record Holder, as RedBull® flew him to Austria to break the Marathon Accordion Record, in which Cory played for over 32 hours. Cory' main contribution is his visionary thinking of how the accordion should be used, played, taught, and presented in modern music. He has given a TED Talk about this, which is currently the only talk in the world about the accordion. Pesaturo is also developing his own electric accordion, and already has made the first ever skinned accordion which includes a symmetric lighting system attached to the keys.
Pesaturo's extensive resumé includes appearances at the White House for President and Mrs. Clinton on 4 different occasions, starting at age 12, and 8 other appearances for the Clintons since 2000, along with 14 letters from the first family. On one of those occasions, he became the youngest person to ever perform at a State Dinner, performing with the Marine Strolling Strings for the President of Hungary. Some TV appearances include the Late Show, performing with Johnny Depp, and nationally televised programs in New Zealand, Canada, Italy, Tunisia, France, and Finland. On an NYC broadcast, CNBC/FOX host Maria Bartiromo once said: "No one is currently doing more for the Accordion than Cory". He has judged accordion competitions in the US, Canada, and Europe, in addition to music competitions in general, and he currently gives Master classes at various universities throughout the US and Europe.
On his Classical side which is lesser known, Cory has a win in a concerto competition at 16 years old gave Pesaturo the rare opportunity to perform with the Brockton Symphony Orchestra as a featured soloist, where he became the youngest accordionist to ever solo with a symphony orchestra in the US back in 2003. Concerning his Jazz side, Cory recorded two CDs with saxophone legend George Garzone and his known band "The Fringe" at age 19, and has become friends with Jazz and Music Legends Quincy Jones and Wynton Marsalis. His performances at all 3 of his World Championships were played on accordions that were not his, and were generally 90% improvised; both aspects are unheard of in the accordion world.
Norman Says: C-Pez and Dick Contino seem to have the same "young lady" magnet!
Accordions most famous legend in the United States, Dick Contino, said when Cory was only 15, “Of all the accordionists I’ve seen over the years, Cory is the one to pass the torch to, the only one who has all the tools to bring the accordion back to its former glory.” Guido Deiro’s son, the “Father of Piano Accordion”, has stated “I’ve worried greatly about the future of the accordion since my father died, but not anymore since seeing and hearing Cory.”
Motor Sports: Pesaturo is also heavily involved and respected with the weather and motor sports worlds as well. From 2005 to 2006, he composed the Official list of records set by the record-breaking 2005 Atlantic hurricane season and also wrote the lists for the 2007 and 2008 Seasons as well. Moreover, he has put out reports on Winter Seasons for the US which have been featured on www.Accuweather.com, www.HurricaneCirty.com, and others. Cory is known for being a pioneer in the FreeSledding world with his own sledding mountain called “CN Mountain”, and has various other hobbies which he dedicates himself to such as writing sports blogs for sites like Bleacher Report. Furthermore, he collaborated with members of the Red Sox and bands such as the Drop Kick Murphy’s on the “Fenway 100” album released in 2012. His music has been played on Formula 1 broadcasts on NBC, FOX, and Velocity, and has an ongoing musical relationship with 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston.
Austin, TX www.DebraPetersMusic.com
Flash Mob Special: NAA Dallas Jig
(by Gary Blair
) Located on the Music Page (link)
"Sadly, Gary won’t make it to NAA this year.
" He asked me to play his song at the convention. I’m inviting you, whoever might like this type of song, to please learn it and let’s play it a time or two at the jam sessions. We can record it and send Gary a video on facebook.
Texas Music Genre - Tex-Mex Music on the Piano Keyboard Accordion Friday, 9:00 am.
Although many consider Tex-Mex music is for playing on the diatonic accordion, it is truly fun to play on Piano Accordion.
This hands-on workshop will include: Tex-Mex Rhythm, Tex-Mex Chord Progressions, and Tex-Mex hit songs!
Debra Peters is currently working an intensive study on TEX-MEX Music for Accordion and will share the findings for all of the 2019 National Accordion Convention. TexMex La Tuna Music
All types of accordions are welcome. The discussions will include the differences between playing this Texas music genre on Diatonic Accordion and/or Piano Accordion. Joining Debra on her workshop is Bill Palmer III to share his knowledge of Conjunto Music. Bill Palmer's TexMex Comments
Palmer's DeColores Sheet Music
Rebecca Ratliff: Dallas area https://www.facebook.com/rebecca.ratliff.53
2019 NAA Convention Music Coordinator and NAA Chief Communication Officer.
Rebecca Ratliff is a multi-instrument musician who began playing at the age of 8 years old. Rebecca’s accordion experience includes teaching, competing and playing high level ensemble/orchestra’s mostly under the influence and guidance of her original teacher, Gene Van – Mishawaka/South Bend IN. Among her many credits she is recognized as a performer and as part of a national champion duet team and ATG champion ensemble group. She is also the co-founder of the duet team “2 Accordions” with her partner Jessica Faltot for the past 14 years, sharing festival and national stages with her to the delight of audiences. Rebecca has also served as a board member of the NAA for the past 5 years.
North Texas www.youtube.com/JimRommel
"I don’t Sing! I Just Play the Accordion… Nonsense!" Rommel Sing and Play Handout
Workshop Description: Singing is fun! So is the accordion. So let’s put the two together! You don’t have to be a great singer (or a great accordion player) to have fun and success playing the accordion and singing at the same time. Whether you’d like to learn simple techniques for your own enjoyment, be able to lead family & friends in a sing-along, entertain at a party or gig, or perform at Carnegie Hall, this is the workshop for you.
Hands-on: Saturday, 10:00 am. Ballroom
This workshop will not teach you how to be a better accordion player, nor will it teach you techniques on how to be a better singer. (Great marketing, huh?) But it will teach you some very basic to more sophisticated techniques you can use and experiment with in order to play and sing simultaneously. Regardless of your ability and experience, you’ll enjoy this workshop and walk away learning something in the process. Bring your accordion to this interactive session. You’ll have a chance to try some of these techniques in a large group setting.
The workshop will be led by Jim Rommel, accomplished accordionist, singer, entertainer and clinician. His workshops are always popular, fun entertaining, and very educational, so don’t miss it!
Workshop Specifications: Any skill level. Hands-on. Bring Accordion, but you don't have to if you just want to listen.
Jim Rommel is a professional accordionist & singer who has dazzled audiences with his excellent musicianship and dynamic entertainment style for years. He is an accomplished musician, who also plays many other instruments, including Piano, Guitar, Bass, Mandolin, Euphonium and Tuba.
Jim has extensive studio experience in both TV and radio. He has also been recorded on CDs for many musical artists at both the local and national level. Jim’s own CD, Prost! A German-American Celebration, has been widely acclaimed, including wonderful endorsements from the late Myron Floren and Frank Yankovic. Jim has been a featured entertainer at the Bavarian Grill in Plano, TX for the past 24 years.
Jim's repertoire covers a wide spectrum of musical styles. In addition to ethnic German and Czech music, he performs genres such as French, Italian, Jazz, Swing, Big Band Standards and Classical music. But most of all, Jim loves to surprise audiences by playing and singing those musical styles they would never dream of hearing on an accordion, such as Pop, Rock, Country and Musical Theatre.
Jim holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music from The University of North Texas, as well as a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from Texas A&M at Commerce. He spent his early years as a high-school band director prior beginning his career in Information Technology, which is where he has made is living for the past 30 years.
New Zealand www.LionelReekie.com/
Getting to Know Lionel Reekie. Friday, 3:30 pm.
Lionel Reekie was born in Rotorua, New Zealand. He commenced accordion lessons at the age of 9, and very quickly started to combine these skills with his love of singing. As an accordion entertainer, Lionel performed extensively around New Zealand from an early age, eventually being selected as a player in the Air New Zealand Accordion Orchestra for six of their international concert tours through Europe, USA and Asia. On these concert tours, Lionel was also a vocalist, performing a repertoire ranging from Light Opera to Rock and Roll. Lionel continues to perform regularly on accordion, as well as conducting accordion orchestras and teaching accordion at one of New Zealand’s largest music schools - the Music Education Centre.
The Auckland Symphony Orchestra asked Lionel to appear as a solo vocalist for their “Last Night of the Proms” and this inspired Lionel to record an album of songs from Stage and Screen with an orchestra. After having traveled to Novosibirsk, Russia, with his family on several occasions, Lionel was so impressed by the excellent quality of Siberian musicians, that he chose to record his CD “From Russia With Love” in Novosibirsk in 2011. Released throughout New Zealand, and on iTunes, Lionel has been interviewed and featured on radio throughout the length of the country.
Lionel's most recent trips to Russia were to perform in concert to a full house at the prestigious Novosibirsk Philharmonia in January 2013 and in September last year to featuring in the opening concert of the World Accordion Championships in Rostov on Don. In August 2013, Lionel also performed as an invited soloist the American Accordionists Association 75th Anniversary celebration in New York City and then singing with the World Accordion Orchestra at the world championships being held in Victoria, B.C. Canada. Closer to home, his appearance at the Vector Arena for the Silver Scrolls also received a great deal of media publicity.
Lionel was guest artist for the Australian Accordion Teachers Association Festival in Sydney in 2017 where he has also been a regular adjudicator and appeared in the USA at the American Accordionists Association Festival in Washington DC in July 2018. Lionel was also a member of the international jury at the Harbin International Accordion Art week competition in China in August of the same year.
It would be my great pleasure to once again visit Texas and be a part of your festival. I have had experience running massed orchestras at accordion events in the past (NZAA and AATA festivals) and with several years experience conducting one of New Zealands top accordion orchestras, I perform professionally and as a singer/accordionist,
Norman Seaton is the individual who oversees the National Accordion Association and the National Accordion Convention.
North Texas www.SharonSeaton.com
Sharon Seaton's "Circle of Confidence": "Circle of Confidence" Handout
This is a repeat of a popular group activity conducted in several previous conventions. Accordionists will come prepared to play one or two short pieces for a small group of players. Then the other participants will be invited to comment on the performance, offering positive encouragement and possible suggestions for improvement.
Participation in this workshop will be limited to 8-10 musicians. Skill level? The ability to hold an accordion.
Dr. Sharon Seaton is a professional accordionist in the Dallas area. She teaches music at El Centro College, including private piano lessons. When working with private students, she incorporates technical skills, memorization, preparing for performance, and sight reading into student lessons.
Michael Soloway: New Jersey www.International-Digital-Electronic-Accordion-Society (Gr8 Ideas).com
Learning the Blues (Acoustic/MIDI) Friday - 2:30 pm.
Creating Your Ideal Accordion using the Roland Editor (Thursday, 4:30 pm).
On Roland digital accordion you can create personalized and unique "perfect" accordions for your own style and pleasure. This is best done on the computer using the Editor Software and can ONLY be done with the Editor on the FR-4x. Time permitting we can explore adding orchestration as well - all in real time on the computer connected to your Roland V accordion.
Michael Soloway is the co-founder and co-director of the International Digital and Electronic Accordion Society – known as IDEAS. In fact, the entire concept for IDEAS was “rolled out” at the NAA meeting last year where it took off with tremendous success. Initially just a dream for Michael and his partner Joe Natoli, the Society has exploded onto the scene this year with rapid growth. It has attracted players and members from all over the globe coming together last November in a unique first annual Symposium in Ohio.
Originally a jazz pianist, Michael was introduced to the accordion later in life while living and playing jazz and cabaret in the New York scene. He fell in love with the uniquely personal and physical feel of the instrument. Trained at the Berklee School of Music in Boston, he recorded and played piano and keyboards in the 80’s with the jazz fusion group Orpheus; but he was drawn to the digital accordion when introduced to it by Alex Chudolij (Music Magic) and jazz accordion great Eddie Monteiro (teaching here at the NAA) and has made that direction his musical pathway ever since.
In mid-career Michael focused on becoming a world renowned cosmetic dentist in Manhattan, NY. Having since moved on, Michael is now more fully engaged into the world of IDEAS, music, arrangements and the technology of the digital accordion that has fascinated him. Studying technique and orchestral arrangements extensively with Joe Natoli (also presenting at the NAA), he is now teaching and playing in his own rite in the New York area while traveling to carry the message and working to provide an artistic and cultural home for other digital accordionists around the world.
Dr. Evelyn Tiffiany-Castigloni College Station, TX www.MusicForAccordion.com/Evelyn
Ron Uhlenhopp, Cedar Falls, Iowa www.facebook.com/Ron-Uhlenhopp
Backing Tracks: Saturday, 9:00 am
Accordion in the Contra Dance Band Friday, 4:30 pm. Contra Dance Handout (link)
Contra dance is a popular social activity in Texas, having its roots in New England. The music consists of reels and jigs, usually from the traditional Irish, Scottish, New England, and French-Canadian repertories, but with opportunities for new sounds, as well. This workshop will be a hands-on exploration of these topics: musicianship (tempo, beat, rhythm, and phrasing), instrumentation (accordion and friends), selecting tunes for contra dance medleys, matching tunes to dance steps, following the caller, and composing descants and harmony lines for a flexible instrumentation. Evelyn Tiffany-Castiglioni plays accordion with the Central Texas contra dance band “Jalapeño Honey,” and arranges and composes the band's repertory of more than 350 tunes. Specifications: Intermediate to advanced players who are comfortable with sight-reading reels and jigs. Participants need their instrument and a music stand. Sheet music will be posted beforehand and distributed on-site.
musicianship (tempo, beat, rhythm, and phrasing), selecting tunes for contra dance medleys, matching tunes to dance steps, following the caller, and composing descants and harmony lines for a flexible instrumentation.
Demonstration, then participants repeat the demo
Evelyn Tiffany-Castiglioni has played accordion since 2005 with the Central Texas contra dance band “Jalapeño Honey,” and arranges and composes the band's repertory of more than 350 tunes. She studied concert accordion and music theory with her father, Robert S. Tiffany, Jr., who was a student of Frank Gaviani, Sr., and teacher in his school. She also studied classical pedal harp with Gayel Panke Gibson and Laurie Buchanan, and mandolin with Marilynn Mair. Her compositions for mandolin ensemble have been performed by the Austin Mandolin Orchestra, and the New York Mandolin Orchestra. Her accordion transcriptions and arrangements are published by www.MusicForAccordion.com. Her 3 large collections of trios for mandolin and most C instruments are available from Amazon.com. Evelyn received a B.S. degree in Biology from the University of Texas-El Paso and a Ph.D. in Human Genetics and Cell Biology from the University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston.
Backing tracks are getting immensely popular with digital and acoustic accordion players.
Ron will share his experience:
• How to use backing tracks on the Roland FR-7x accordion (applies also to others)
• Where to get backing tracks and how to identify which ones are good and useful, which ones are not.
• How to store backing tracks and use them with your digital accordion
• How does playing with backing tracks resonate with the audience
• When to use and when not
Ron's Workshop Session Detailed Handout:
Ron began accordion lessons at age 10 in Waterloo, Iowa. In a few years, he entered the Iowa Accordion Olympics in Cedar Rapids and qualified to play in the Chicago competition. The songs were all classical and required Hannon Exercises in preparation. While nerve racking, the classical training was helpful in playing many other music styles as a soloist. After high school, he entered a college to train as a mathematics instructor, since the college offered no major in accordion. He entered the Army after which he completed more mathematics and education work which led to a teaching position in nearby Cedar Falls, Iowa. Teaching, raising a family, and working a summer job, took away from playing the piano accordion.
Having retired in 2001, he started playing the accordion full-time. With a Cordovox and later a MIDI adapted Cordovox Super V, he began growing
repertoire and performing many gigs a month. When Roland technology became available, he purchased a model FR-7x and the Richard Noel sound sets and learned to use the linked presets concept to effortlessly change sounds on-the-fly. Now, as a professional soloist, he uses Bose PA systems, wireless systems, and scores for most performances. He also incorporates MP3 backing tracks when audiences want to hear his digital orchestra.
Mom’s 15 Minutes of Fame
and On-going Photo Op:
Winner of the 2019 Most Popular Event!
Salon C- 9:00-5:00 Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Hosted by Arlyn & Tom Visentin
Always bring your accordion to the Convention and Mom's 15-minutes of Fame! Come join in the fun at Mom’s 15 Minutes of Fame! This is your chance to play your accordion and your favorite music your way, to a non-judgmental group of fellow conventioneers. This event is meant for everyone, from beginners, and hobbyists to experienced professional accordionists.
Music enthusiasts and other instruments are welcome too.
We love accordions. We love having fun with music and you’re invited! Let us hear your accordion and let’s become famous at the
Convention! Don’t miss it! Arlyn is the master in managing the "fame" event and taking pictures for the NAA web-based photo gallery.
Ear Training Workshop Saturday, 2:30 in Salon C
Mary Wright's information is located in the vendor area of this website.
Back to Top
Bring your accordion to this hands-on workshop designed for classically trained musicians, who can only read music and struggle playing "by ear." Are you stuck in a rut by only being able to play written music? Want to break out and learn the most up to date tunes before sheet music is even available? Want to learn to adapt any music played by any instruments, even orchestras, to accordion arrangements? Use these proven methods to develop your "ear training."
Bring your accordion and learn new tunes in this workshop. (Link) Download and Print Your copy of the Workshop Notes.
1. Five (5) steps to learn by ear.
2. How to mentally learn the tune.
Captain Accordion appears solo and in ensemble, extensively in the Houston area. He writes all the arrangements for shows for himself and his wife. He specializes in French Musette, Italian Valtaro, German and music from the Great American Songbook.
Captain Accordion is an organist, percussionist and lifelong accordionist, performing in the Houston, Texas area.