10 March 2011

Curious About Accordions

Dee's Left Hand
photo by Shelly Campbell
When new students come to take instruction I love to ask about their musical past. It helps me form a lesson plan when I know whether they have studied before and if they have, which instrument.

It's not uncommon for adults who had music lessons as children to pick up their studies once again. It's also not uncommon to have young people decide the accordion is fascinating and ask their parents to find them a teacher.

The most common student for me right now are people in their twenties who have either studied other instruments, are playing in a band that wants to add the sound of the accordion or who enjoy popular bands like Gogol Bordello, Devotchka or Beirut all of which use accordion in their groups.

Their challenge will be to learn how to use the bellows efficiently and what the heck all those little buttons on the left side (right side as you look at it) do. Left hand technique and bellow technique make the difference between a person who plays an accordion like a keyboard and an accordionist.

1 comment:

SteelChickens said...

I started playing accordion when I was about 16. My mom bought it from a lunch lady at her school who was cleaning out her parent's attic. I took lessons from a lady named Dixie for awhile and caught on quickly. I wish I could take lessons from you! However, I live an hour from the cities. :(