Sounds and Styles:
Don’t like your drummer? Do you want to sound like a band? Get the most out of your Roland BK7m and your Roland V-Accordion / Midi Accordion. I will share tips and tricks and demonstrate the use of different styles, layering sounds, melody Intelligent and other helpful configuration.
Demonstration: Friday 9:00 am. Digital Suite.
"What Happens When You Study with a Legendary Master of Jazz Accordion?"
Gary Blair :
A personal insight into an experience of what it was like studying with a legendary jazz accordionist-Leon Sash. How I was taught, what I was taught and what I learned together with highlights of the relationship. This is both a presentation and a demonstration workshop requiring no active playing participation by the attendees. I speak about personal and factual experiences of my relationship with a legendary accordionist and I will demonstrate some of his basic unique methodology and musical concepts.
Demonstration: Friday, 3:30 pm. Digital Suite
Paul's Background: Paul mentored under the legendary blind jazz accordionist, Leon Sash resulting in a life long relationship. Leon blessed him with the gifts of his wisdom and music for his lifetime. Paul was a member of Leon's "guys;" a small group of professional accordionists under the sponsorship and leadership of Leon who formed a unique accordionist fraternity always staying together, promoting each other and performing engagements all around the Chicago metro for many years.
Paul has made many appearances in concert and conducted numerous workshops for many national accordion organizations and events including the ATG, the Southeast Accordion Association, National Accordion Association (NAA), Las Vegas International Convention and the Cotati Accordion Festival. In October, 2016, he had the honor to perform in Rome, Italy. Residing in Tempe, AZ for the last 12 years, he enjoys casual engagements and jam sessions all around town. His latest CD was featured on Accordions USA.com and Accordions Worldwide.com and it has drawn international recognition with impressive reviews from critics such as Paolo Picchio, President of Consorzio Music Marche, Castelfidardo, Italy, and Howard Reich, music critic for the Chicago Tribune. Paul was honored to have Dermott Husey of Sirius XM feature several songs from the CD on his Podcast. Recently, he has arranged and compiled some of his favorite tunes for the accordion in a new publication; and, he is also back in the recording studio working on a new eclectic accordion CD project to be released soon.
Paul Betken Concerts: Paul's concerts often includes some songs from the American Songbook together with some contemporary songs which an audience would not expect to hear performed on the accordion.
Accordion Tips and Tricks
This workshop will incorporate bellows techniques and articulation, ornaments ,etc., to obtain an authentic style. It will be mostly demonstration due to the time constraint.
Demonstration: Friday, 9:00 am. Ballroom.
Gary's Friday evening dance program will include SCOTTISH Ceilidh dancing.
Christian, Kim and Dan
The Stradella Bass on the accordion lends itself to Oom-Pah accompaniments in the left hand. In music books for the accordion, the Oom-Pah Bass is generally the go-to default. However, when playing many songs with the Oom-Pah Bass, the listener may be turned off by the "hokey" sound of the 40s and 50s. With some simple modifications, alternative Bass patterns can enrich the player and listener experience, as well as providing more interesting, more up-to-date sounds. Examples will include patterns for some classic rock, slow rock, blues, and other songs.
Hands-on: Friday 2:30 Salon B (will include hand-outs).
Ed's workshop will include some Christmas Songs because the average accordion player probably spends more time in a lifetime playing Christmas music than any other type. These songs are often played exactly the same year-after-year. In this workshop, we will provide some basic songs ideas and options, including some solo/interlude patterns to enrich the Christmas music experience. Examples will include Silent Night, What Child is This, We Three Kings, Let It Snow, Jingle Bells, and others. Ed claims to be an amateur accordion player who started at the age of 7.
Spice Up Your Arrangements
We will teach you how to add rhythm patterns, chords, glissando, turns - all kinds of things to spice up even the most basic arrangement. Bring a piece of music with you, and we'll show you how. This is a valuable skill to learn due to the small amount of music that is available for accordionists.
Demonstration: Friday, 10:00 am. Ballroom.
Kim and Dan's concerts provide a performance beyond the boundaries of what people realize the accordion can do. The concert will touch just about every style of music imaginable and will be synchronized perfectly with this energetic, dynamic couple. These 2 are indeed America's Favorite Accordion Duo.
In 2017 with vibrant energy and passion, Dan and Kim performed, adjudicated and judged at the Leavenworth International Accordion Festival, The Edmonton, Alberta Accordion Extravaganza, and The Las Vegas International Accordion Convention. Both Dan and Kim have taught music lessons for over 35 years, educating hundreds of people in the art of music. Several of their students have received full music scholarships to the Lamont School of Music at Denver University. They have both directed many award winning accordion orchestras, ranging from beginner to virtuoso, including the National Champion Accordion Orchestra.
Dan and Kim have performed extensively throughout the US, with engagements in Canada and as far away as Beijing, China at the Beijing Philharmonic Hall. Performances also include a 2 year run of their own production entitled “Music Makes the World Go Round” in Branson, Missouri. While in Branson, Dan and Kim experienced performing on the same stage with Bobby Vinton, Andy Williams and Les Brown, among other great entertainers. They continue to play over 200 gigs a year and thoroughly enjoy each and every performance.
Dan Christian at a Glance:
Four time Rocky Mountain Accordion Virtuoso Champion Winner, Winner of the Prestigious Anthony Galla-Rini Traveling Trophy,
Director of the US National Champion Accordion Orchestra with record of 1st Place wins across the country, Esteemed arranger and transcriber of music for accordion orchestra, duet and solo including works by Tschaikovsky, Dvorak, Saint Saens, Schubert and many others, Spotlighted solo accordionist for the premier run of 'La Curandera", the first opera to highlight the accordion as the principal instrument, Arranger for the music for the Christian duo's original Branson production "Music Makes the World Go Round," Accordion teacher and educator for over 40 years.
Kim Christian at a Glance:
US National Champion (AAA), Honorary bronze medal winner World Champion (Coupe Mondiale), AFNA Virtuoso Solo Champion, 2 Time RMAS Virtuoso Champion, Accordion Major at Loretto Heights College Denver, CO., Director of many accordion orchestras from beginner to virtuoso with extremely successful winning record, Producer and Manager for "Music Makes the World Go Round," the Christian duo's original Accordion Show based in Branson, Mo., Accordion teacher and educator for over 35 years.
Master class/open lesson for Accordion Duo, Accordion Group
This workshop for Accordion lovers! Playing accordion but want to develop your performing skills? Looking to start playing in a group or as a Duo? Just grab your accordion and hurry up for exciting experience to listen Elena’s accordion students playing in an ensemble and do more fun by join to them!!!
Hands-on: Saturday, 2:30 pm. Ballroom
For you who thinking attending this workshop and thinking trying playing in the group on this workshop please practice first or second parts of “Let’s Dance the Polka” from level 3 Palmer/Hughes or “Clarinet Polka” from level 4 (the same authors). If that level still little difficult to you – don’t worry – Elena will have easy music that you definitely can play! If you practice, you can bring your accordion! If you want just observe – Elena’s student will demonstrate their passion to music and their expertise on playing duo just for you! It will be fun!
FYI: Just in case anyone does not recognize Elena name, she lives in the Dallas area and is highly trained in accordion music. She run a very successful school in Plano for both piano and accordion. She is a professional musician. Her instrument of choice from childhood has been the button accordion, traditionally known as bayan.
Elena Fainshtein started to play this unique instrument at the age of five years old. She first took private lessons and then attended the School for Gifted Kids in Minsk, Belarus. After Music College, graduating with the highest grades possible Elena attended the Academy of Music in Minsk, which she graduated in 1987. For more information please look www.ElenaFainshtein.com
How to play a Digital Accordion, The Basics, and Jazz Bass Chords. Conventioneers must bring an accordion to his workshops.
Hands-on: Thursday, 9:00 am. Digital Suite
Dr. Fries also moderates a Panel of Professionals Who Play Digital Accordions (as in the past two years).
Discussion: Friday 1:30 pm. Digital Suite
Dr. Ian Blair Fries is an amateur musician from Mantoloking, New Jersey, and Vero Beach, Florida. Ian plays Excelsior acoustic and Roland electronic piano accordions, and always carry an accordion or two in his TBM 850. Ian has played at several aviation venues including the EAA AirVenture, and the Cannes France Airshow. He has played and lectured on the "Accordionist's Hand," at accordion meetings in Texas, New Jersey, Florida, and Virginia. Ian is an orthopedic and hand surgeon. He favors French musette, popular American standards, and South American music from the early 1900's. He's a member of the Flying Musicians Association, Inc.
Creating Backing Tracks on Your Roland BK-7m Backing Module.
Many people have enjoyed playing with my backing sound tracks, but do you know that you can make your very own backing tracks? If you have a Roland BK-7m module and a Roland Accordion (4x or 8x), this workshop is for you. If interested, you can purchase my backing tracks on memory sticks. If you have a Roland BK-7m module and a Roland Accordion (4x or 8x), this workshop is for you.
Hands-on, Thursday, 10:00 am. and 1:30 pm., Friday, 2:30 pm. Digital Suite.
Chuck Henry: Setting up and performing on the Roland FR-4x or the Roland FR-8x: Both of these Roland Digital Accordions are favorites for people interested in learning some of the secrets of playing them. If you have one of these already bring it with you, or you may be interested in being introduced to them. Upon request, private sessions are available.
One-Man-Band Chuck: Performing as a one man band with the combination of the Roland BK-7m and the Roland FR-4x (or Roland FR-8x) digital midi accordions. I can provide you with guidance and technical tips and examples of how to perform using these together with my performance lists on the BK-7m and my use of user programs on the Roland Accordions. These Performance Lists and user programs will be available on memory Sticks for those interested.
Chuck Henry's Concerts include demonstrating his talents as a one-man-band. He loves to play and vocalize and have done this on stage in Las Vegas at the International Accordion Convention with people like Dick Contino watching and enjoying his performance. Chuck also has played on the main stage with Gordon Kohl as a duet for a segment of dancing which would bring in audience participation. In other words, dancing while the performance is done. Chuck writes: "I play a variety of music for dancing and listening enjoyment. American big band, ethnic Polish Italian German French and Latin. And I vocalize. I've often played in the restaurant at the National Accordion Convention in the Dallas area."
Chuck Henry is a professional accordionist with 48 years of experience in California, Michigan and Florida as a one-man-band with the midi accordions Concerto and Roland FR-8x and FR-4x along with the BK-7m module. I've played and taught classes at the Las Vegas International Conventions and the NAA Conventions. In Florida, I play for private parties and currently play at a nice restaurant on Sundays for brunch. My name is Chuck Henry and you can look me up on my website: http://chuckhenryandmusic.info
Meet Chuck Henry, he is hosting Roland Digital Accordion Jam sessions at night after hours in the Digital Accordions Room as needed.
Workshops I and II: Mixing Your Accordion Registrations Along with Digital Instrument Sounds
Placing an importance to the accordion tones being included and mixed in with other digital musical instrument voices. His workshops includes the accordion (voicing, registers, tuning, and chords); combining accordion reed voices with Digital Piano, Strings, etc.) He also mixes sounds from Broadway, French, Italian, County, and European music.
Demonstration: Thursday, 11:00 am. and Saturday 9:00 am. Digital Suite
Plumping Up Your Solos:
This is a HANDS ON workshop for Level 1 through Advanced accordionists. Handouts will be supplied by Shelia Lee. Shelia says: "Playing with confidence, delivering a solid solo performance, with feeling and passion – with a FULL SOUND – is what I am calling “Plumping up Your Solos”.
Hands-on: Friday 1:30 pm. Ballroom
In this workshop – we will explore the minimum requirements to successfully learn the techniques, styles, and methods of making your solo performance OUTSTANDING! – No Matter What Level Player you are. There are “Three SIMPLE STEPS” to take an ordinary solo – even an extremely simple one and make it a “GOOSE-PIMPLE” Performance! (1) Bass Power, (2)Mini-Runs & "diddles" with a lot of (3) Expression, Expression, and more Expression! Shelia's workshop is 100% "hands-on – group" participation with accordions (bring stands)!
Shelia Lee is a unique accordionist. Shelia loves to TEACH and share the fun she has on the accordion. She has played the accordion her entire life (studied with Willard Palmer) and has operated a music school twice – one for 14 years in Dayton Ohio (Shelia’s Accordion Conservatory) – where she had over 300 accordion students that competed at the ATG and other local competitions. Her advanced group called the Spitfires – won several National Titles in Pop Band, Open Band, Virtuoso Band, and Show band. (see photos at - https://www.facebook.com/groups/263427200512230/) And another studio (Heritage Arts Productions) in the Hispanic Center of Houston for 7 years - where she wrote and taught Tex/Mex and organized the students into performing groups that would open for well known accordion groups. (Molly B’s Polka Party, Alex Meixner, Conjunto Festival, etc)
She has conducted workshops and orchestras for accordion clubs and music festivals as far away as England, Alaska, California, Arizona, Alabama, And New Jersey – teaching her POP Band arrangements and unique HANDS-ON approach to learning your chords. Please see her FREE Accordion Blog for solos, duets, trios, ensembles, and teaching materials. www.shelialee.wordpress.com
Workshop 1: Tango Nuevo:
We will explore tango in its most traditional roots in Buenos Aries, Argentina and it’s evolution to popular culture as Tango Nuevo. We will read through a tango, milonga and vals in order to learn comping patterns, performance practices, and specific articulations used in the style. Please bring you accordion, music will be provided. This workshop is for all levels of musicians and it is participation-based.
Hands-on: Friday, 2:30 pm. Ballroom
Workshop 2: Arranging for the Accordion: (Pending)
In this hands-on workshop, we will discuss how to arrange best for the Accordion. We will focus on getting away from typical um pah and um pah pah bass patterns and learn how to navigate changes using bass lines and chord combining on the LH. We will look at jazz and pop music lead sheets to make specific arrangements. This is a participation based class, proficiency at reading music is helpful, but not required.
Hands-on: Friday, 1:30 Salon B
Jamie Maschler Concerts:
Creosote is accordion duo Jamie Maschler and Gabriel Rodrigues, playing a dynamic array of original and world music. Maschler and Rodrigues are seasoned musicians and are individually and collectively mastered at their craft. Expect to hear virtuosity and elegant arrangements of new Brazilian and World music classics. The instrumental duo is currently working towards a studio album to be released in 2018.
Creosote was a crowd favorite at the the 2017 Port Townsend Deep Squeeze Accordion Festival. Maschler and Rodrigues are in the studio now working on their first full length album to be released in 2018
Workshop I: Grayson Masefield's advanced interactive workshop will include explanations and demonstrations of his techniques that he used to win world titles and conduct master-level training throughout the world. His workshop will include different bellow-shakes, tremolos, note bending, accents, and phrasing. Additionally, Grayson covers preparing a musical selection to be stage-ready. Stagecraft training specializes in using the body to influence the accordion sounds. True to any professional musician, Grayson's workshops always include professional practice techniques.
Demonstration: Saturday, 9:00 am. Ballroom
Workshop II: Grayson Masefield has offered to include one or more master classes during the convention. If the demand is present, the Association will provide the work area for Grayson's master classes.
Participation: To be arranged during the convention
Grayson Masefield Concerts:
Grayson writes: I have a serious concert repertoire that includes baroque, classical, romantic and modern accordion classical works including Bach - Passacaglia & Fugue , Scarlatti - Sonatas, Grieg - Holberg Suite, Mozart - Variations, Chopin - Revolutionary Etude. This can be separate or combined with a lighter style program including jazz, waltz musette and neuvo tango.
Grayson Masefield was born in Auckland, New Zealand. His musical career began at 3 years of age with Fay Schwa, then developed into the entertainment field with Maurice Jones. Grayson began classical training at Auckland University with Stephanie Poole. In 2007 Grayson left New Zealand to study in France, with Frederic Deschamps from 2007 to prepare for international competitions.
In 2009, Grayson became the first person to win the Coupe Mondiale top classical category and the Coupe Mondiale Virtuoso Entertainment category in the same year. He also won the Roland International V-Accordion Competition & Festival, Rome and the Primus Ikaalinen International TV Competition, Finland, showing his amazing musical versatility.
September 2010 Grayson won the Trophée Mondial Classique World Accordion Championships and at the 2010 Coupe Mondiale, Varaždin, Croatia, Grayson was elected to the prestigious CIA Music Committee. He has finished his formal studies at HEMU (University of Music Lausanne), with tutor Prof. Stéphane Chapuis and also gained his Accordion Performers Diploma of New Zealand.
Grayson has a varied program of serious concert works as well as entertainment music and has been invited to perform around the world including - France, Spain, Germany, UK, Portugal, Slovakia, Italy, USA, Canada, Russia, Lithuania, Portugal, China, Switzerland, Austria, Chile, New Zealand, Australia, Finland. Grayson has worked with several of the world's leading composers such as Frank Angelis (France), Gorka Hermosa (Spain), Petri Makkonen (Finland) and Gary Daverne (New Zealand) to perform and record new original works for the accordion.
From 2012 he has been invited to adjudicate and/or appear as Guest Artist at Competitions he has previously won, CIA in Italy, CMA in USA, Primus Ikalinenin in Finland and Roland International in Rome.
Wild & Wacky Fun Stuff: How to do it on the Digital Accordion
If you have come to the National Accordion Convention for serious accordion playing, you are in the wrong workshop! We will explore unique sounds on your accordion and how to use them. Think about it - there are songs you can identify by name just by hearing the first three or four notes used by the original artist. This is often because the artist used an interesting sound or orchestration. We'll have fun exploring the sounds and effects available on digital accordions.
Hands-on: Saturday, 1:30 pm. Digital Suite
Dale Mathis is the creator of Dale Mathis Sound Sets for Roland Accordion. You can hear examples of his work on his YouTube channel: Dale Mathis Accordion. There are more than two-hundred videos, including the newest posts: EZ Songbook for accordion. At MyCrownMusic.net you can find free sheet music for the EZ Songbook and the Slow & Easy Accordion Class.
Dale began accordion lessons when he was ten. Two years later he convinced his parents he “needed” an organ. The following year he began playing tuba and string bass in school music programs. At fifteen he began teaching students at the school where he studied accordion. Pipe organ was his performance instrument at the University of Wisconsin. He was in high school when he started the Dale Mathis Group; they played weddings and Wisconsin clubs for thirty years. Dale owned musical instrument retail stores in Wisconsin and Hawaii; he learned his digital instrument programming skills through his dealer associations with Yamaha (organs, synthesizers, digital pianos) and Allen Organ. Today, Dale programs Roland accordions for Crown Music, Sun City, AZ customers. And if you are hungry for a hearty German meal, you can hear him play, along with a tuba player, every Friday and Saturday at Haus Murphy’s in Glendale, AZ. Dale will be participating in the "Digital Forum."
Part 1: Getting to know how your Accordion works, consisting of simple repairs, trouble shooting, basic tools needed, how to pack and ship your Accordion, general overview of physical and mechanical aspects, and question and answer, time permitting.
Part 2 (advanced) going inside your Accordion, opening it up, Reed inspection, bass machine issues, keyboard issues, and tuning, and cleaning.
Demonstration (both workshops): Salon A, 10:00 am. Friday and Saturday.
Arranging your own songs with Midi effects or Virtual Accordion effects.
Dr. Mike Middleton could give a presentation (similar to the 2017 talk) on arranging 'Amazing Grace Accordion Variations', which is one of his bestselling single recordings. Utilizing that song and other selections he has arranged, including 'Once Upon a December', and others. Mike can show how to take a simple tune and arrange variations using different accordion techniques and midi enhancements, or virtual accordion effects, for fun and enjoyment. The skill level is intermediate to advanced.
Demonstration: Friday, 3:30 pm. Ballroom
Dr. Mike Middleton, an award winning accordionist, would be interacting in various convention activities that includes Midi enhanced Accordion solo concert of Texas Folk Music and other accordion favorites from his recent albums. www.accordions.com/MikeMiddleton.
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, 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 hr of polka/waltzes and Texas folk music suitable for dancing. Mike does a lot of events as a MIDI solo.
Dr. Mike Middleton & The Middletones. Dr. Mike Middleton is a Texan from San Antonio and Austin. He was former Texas state Champion in 1982, and 1983, as well as Texas Folk Music Champion by ATG/TAA in 2001. Mike has produced 3 full Albums, and a Single, and has several other projects underway. Dr. Middleton is a full time Nuclear Physician at Scott & White medical center , yet play frequently for charities, and festivals in Central Texas and beyond. Details available on his ATG sponsored webpage: www.accordions.com/mikemiddleton
Basic ‘Harmonization’ Techniques Extremely Enhanced Using the Roland Fr-8x.
Demonstration: Saturday, 2:30 pm. Digital Suite
Eddie has been playing accordion since the age of 5. He lives in New Jersey and has worked in the New York Metropolitan area all of his career. A career which has taken him through every aspect of the music business that includes solo work, Society band work, ‘Casual’/‘Club Date’ gigs, jingles, recordings, International Jazz Festivals in Holland, Finland, Sweden, Indonesia, Punta Del Este Uruguay with Paquito D’Rivera, TV, 20 years with Bobby Rosengarden’s band playing the Jerry Lewis Telethon from New York, Broadway - playing accordion for Ricky Martin in ‘Evita’ and 20 years of teaching music in public school. Eddie is fluent in 5 languages - loves jazz and Brasilian music.
Studio Quality Recording At Home for both the Beginner and Advanced accordionists.
Demonstration: Thursday, 2:30 pm and Friday, 10:00 am. Digital Suite
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 Bisilia of Youngstown, Ohio, and won the 1972 AAA US Virtuoso Accordion Championship under Mr. Bisilia’s 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 (1976, 1977) 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, studying with world-renowned Canadian accordionist, Joseph Macerollo. Joe Natoli also studied with some of Canada’s most important composers like John Weinzweig (dean of Canadian composers), Gustav Ciamaga, Lothar Klein, and Edward Laufer.
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.
Some of Joe’s most recent recordings include an all-acoustic accordion CD entitled “Omaggio,” which is dedicated to the many musical influences in his life from various composers, musical friends and family members. Joe has also released an all-digital Roland V-Accordion CD entitled, “Waltz for Ron,” which contains a bevy of original compositions and arrangements of classical, light classical, ethnic and jazz pieces fully exploiting the orchestral possibilities of the Roland virtual accordion. “Waltz For Ron” is not only the title of the CD, but the title track of one of the CD’s compositions dedicated to the memory of the late Ron Lankford, who is very much responsible for the success of the V-Accordion in the US. A new CD will be completed in 2018 called “Chameleon.”
In addition to his music degrees, Joe also attended Youngstown State for a Computer Science degree and has an MBA from Franklin University. Joe has been working in the Information Technology industry since 1984, working for General Motors, Delphi Automotive, EDS, JP Morgan Chase, Nationwide Insurance, and PNC Bank. Joe and his wife JoAnn have three adult daughters and two granddaughters.
Workshop 1. Going Digital?
What the Accordion Digital World Can Do to You and For You.
Demonstration and Participation: Friday, 11:00 am. and Saturday, 11:00 am. Digital Suite
Workshop 2. Playing an "Orchestral Digital Accordion"
Workshop 2 leads to outcomes that may not be expected. In terms of technique, you may learn that bellows and touch pressure can be used for dynamic control. You may find that yourself learning, or even inventing, new techniques to play in different instrumental styles. Your arrangements will change as you take advantage of new sound options. You will undoubtedly find yourself becoming far more aware of musical genres never explored previously, spending hours on YouTube sites. If you play publicly, you will discover people are in awe of the capabilities of your instrument, and across the Internet will be new friends all exploring these instruments in a world-wide community of accordionists.
Demonstration and Participation: Hands-on instruction with V-Accordions will be part of the experience. All ability levels welcome. During both workshops, digital accordion owners will be asked to provide examples of their own.
Richard Noel uses "How I do it when I programming the V-Accordion" to develop his workshops.
He writes: It is a well-known fact that the v-accordions are incredibly satisfying instruments, yet for most accordionists they seldom come ready-made to satisfy all of our desires. It takes time, knowledge, and patience to program the v-accordion for a variety of musical requirements. I discuss how I approach programming, including the organization of programs. V-Accordion owners will explore several examples, including how to change settings, what to change, and the results of those changes.
Richard Noel's Concerts are a V-Accordion Tour of Music Styles that includes, Country, Pop, Latin, Irish, Blues, Polka, Dixie, and Rock, all with a uniquely digital flavoring.
Richard Noel, originally from Portland, Oregon, is a retired Professor of Psychology from California State University, Bakersfield. He played in numerous accordion contests as a youth, culminating in a first-place solo trophy at the American Accordionists' Association contest in New York City at age 18. During his long career as a professor, he played just enough to keep his “chops” but could not devote extensive time to the instrument. After retiring, the Roland digital V-Accordions provided the impetus to develop his musical career in creative ways. His youtube channel at “Bakersfieldaccordion” has attracted over 5 million hits in the last several years, from accordionists and non-accordionists alike. He plays often to various audiences from L.A. to Wisconsin, even to Australia. His programs for the various v-accordions are widely known and used by accordionists throughout the world.
Houston, TX area
Manipulating Tones using Bellows and Foot Pedals
Demonstration: Thursday, 3:30 pm. Digital Suite
Who is Bill Palmer? 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 a number of 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 was capable of producing hundreds of instrumental sounds. But there were also certain disadvantages, one of which was that the instrument was rather heavy.
Bill's opinion of V-Accordions: In 2013, Roland introduced a new V-accordion, the FR-8x. It was much more versatile, had lots of built-in effects, and a much more flexible sound engine. And it weighed an extra pound. On the plus side, though, it was very easy to edit the sounds so the player could emulate new instruments without too much effort. But for an older player, it was very uncomfortable for strolling.
A couple of years later, Roland introduced the FR-4x. It is smaller and lighter, with the same basic sound engine as the FR-8x. It weighs less than 20 pounds, so it is feasible for strolling. However, it lacks a few features that are found on the 8x, such as the master bar, which is used for switching from one sound to another, or for initiating certain special effects. The effects are still there, but they are not easy to get to. Also, certain tonal features were difficult to access.
Bill purchased one of the 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 a pedal unit made by Roland. Bill will be demonstrating how he uses this pedal system, as well as the Roland editor program for the 4x to modify the sounds of the instrument and to produce those interesting effects that we all know and love!
Cory is the "Concert Master"
for the Ballroom Concerts.
Workshop 1: Cory Does Lovello! The musical techniques of Tony Lovello that details the many unique techniques Tony used as I went over in this video - https://www.youtube.com/Lovello
Demonstration: Thursday, 4:30 pm. Digital Studio
Workshop 2: Authenticity of Styles:
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. I will take you through 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.
Demonstration: To Be Determined
Cory Pesaturo Concerts:
Includes Electric Concerts OR an Acoustic concert as many have been asking me for the past year. This all depends on what the crowd would want from me. I'm extremely flexible as long as I can have fun.
Cory Pesaturo is an American musician from Cumberland, Rhode Island. Pesaturo is an accordion player, who also plays the piano, clarinet, and saxophone. He began playing at the age of nine, and in 2002, became the youngest person to win the National Accordion Championship. He most recently won the 2011 Primus Ikaalinen World Championship and was the first ever American contestant. Additionally, Pesaturo won the Coupe Mondiale World Digital Accordion Championship in Auckland, New Zealand, and became the first American to win a World Accordion Championship since Peter Soave 25 years earlier. In June 2009, he won the Leavenworth International Championship, and International Jazz Championship. Pesaturo performed in 5 different continents during 2009; some countries included Canada, Italy, New Zealand, Tunisia and Japan. Cory is one of only four accordionists in history to win a World Championship on both acoustic and electronic accordion, and is the only person to also win a world championship in jazz.
Cory Pesaturo and one of his modern electric accordions. This particular accordion has a full vinyl skin, and midi-sequenced LED's in the grill connected to the keys in a symmetric pattern. He was accepted on the accordion at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, MA where he studied Contemporary Improvisation and a variety of music styles, including Italian and French folk music, Bulgarian and Jewish music, Classical music and Jazz. He became the second person to major in and graduate as an accordionist at the New England Conservatory.
Workshop: Accompanying Vocalists and Texas Roots
Debra Peters (with Carol Garrison) will break it all down to the basics of how to accompany vocalists with accordions. This Texas Roots Music workshop will zero in on singing the correct lead notes and accompanying them with the correct harmony notes! We have chosen the most popular accordion polka melody (with lyrics) of all time! It’s a big surprise we’re waiting for! Digging deep into the details of a perfect Melody. Memorizing this particular songs Chord Progression is a must for EVERY musician. This is an Interactive session (50% presentation and 50% conventioneers playing accordions!
Hands-on: Friday, 11:00 am. Ballroom
Debra Peters' Bio:
Debra has called Austin Texas home for 25+ years. Born in the heart of the Rocky Mountains in Jasper Alberta Canada. Her father was a railroad engineer for the CNR and influenced his daughter with the sound and feel of TRAIN BEATS from day one! He was the one who brought home the ABC MASTER accordion that Debra still picks up and plays and teaches lessons in Austin today. After 9 years of lessons with Palmer Hughes books, switched to piano and left accordion behind for about a decade of piano blues and singing in piano bar jobs in Japan, Holland, France, Mexico as well as throughout Canada, including several performances at Expo’86 in Vancouver. Solo piano and as a singer in a western swing band called the yo-dells.
While living in Los Angeles back in the 80’s, Debra was asked to fill in for a Cajun/zydeco/blues band. Getting the accordion out of storage was the only thing to do! Her band The Hollywood Saints was changed to The Love Saints when she moved to Texas.
Texas press had named her the Squeezebox Chanteuse of the Lone Star State! Rockin’ country meeds Cajun zydeco swamp pop. Stage highlights include performances for Texas Folk life BIG SQUEEZE in Houston and Austin. Debra has been one of the judges of the BIG SQUEEZE since it began. Performance on Joel Guzman Squeezebox Mania, shows with Flaco and Santiago Jimenez, Marcia Ball, Wayne Toups, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Beausoleil, Clarence Gatemouth Brown, Gino Delafose & more. Past few years, Debra has joined accordion orchestras and traveled to Chicago, S.F. and Las Vegas with conductor Joan C. Sommers.
Huge promoter of ALL accordion music. All styles, all players. Wherever and whenever Debra can promote accordion, she’ll do it! Very involved (behind the scenes) as a member of the National Accordion Association convention planning. Member of CTAA, NAA, & ATG.
Much more info on Debra’s original songwriting, recordings, video production and educational accordion lesson DVDs on her website: www.debrapetersmusic.com
Debra Peters' NAA Convention Workshop History
Classic Country & Western, Roots Folk Music, Roots Blues & Basics of Jazz, RAGTIME, Famous Chord Progressions, Songwriting Basics, Playing Music Using Chords, Know Your Song Chord Progressions, General (Not Only Accordion) MUSIC LESSONS, Note Reading Basics, Using Debs Marker Notes, Singing and Playing Accordion, Accordionist as a Band Leader, Bass Clef: Beyond Oom-Pa-Pa, Remembering Melodies With Numbers, Nashville Number System, Play In All 12 Keys With Ease
Debra Peters Concert: Texas Roots music. Performing a variety of Western-Swing, Rockin’ & Country Blues, Cajun-Zydeco & Ragtime music.
The playing of linear melodic material is a fundamental skill of the jazz musician. Playing in, around and through chord changes as opposed to just arpeggios and chords tones is a complicated subject that eludes many beginner and intermediate jazz practitioners. Gabe is going to break down this concept of linear playing into some easy to use fundamental strategies that will allow players of any level to expand their solo material and gain new language and insight for their improvisations. Subject material covered will include the major, dominant and minor be bop scale as well as linear concepts adapted from the famous jazz pianist Barry Harris.
Demonstration: Saturday, 3:30 pm. Ballroom
Gabe Hall-Rodrigues is an Arizona-native accordionist, pianist and vocalist. He began playing the piano at age 7 and quickly realized his love for music and performing. In 2010, after studying the accordion for only a year, Gabe won the American Accordionists’ Association Virtuoso Solo Competition. Gabe holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music Therapy and a Master’s degree in Jazz Piano Performance from Arizona State University. Gabe has performed throughout Arizona and the country acting as a sideman, studio musician, and band leader in various ensembles including Jump Jive and Wail, Ocotrillo Accordion Jazz Trio, Bad Cactus Brass Band, Salt River Brass Band, Som Brazil, as well as with legendary tubist Sam Pilafian and J.D. Shaw of Boston Brass. In 2014, Gabe lived in Brazil for a year and was fortunate to play and record with numerous local musicians. Gabe has spent several years touring the country with the Arizona folk rock band Jared and the Mill, performing both as headliners and opening up for acts such as Barry Gibb, Allen Stone, Frontier Ruckus, Boy and Bear, Wildfeathers, and many more. Gabe has presented workshops at the American Accordionists’ Association Conference and the Frank Marocco Accordion Event highlighting the use of the accordion in music therapy as well as elements of jazz language and harmony for accordionists.
"I don’t Sing! I Just Play the Accordion… Nonsense!"
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.
Practice Techniques: This interactive workshop explores techniques for effective practice. Sharon Seaton will facilitate the workshop, and participants will share ideas on how good practice leads to better playing. Please bring your proven techniques and your questions to this workshop.
Secor, George: Illinois
Great Thoughts Begin Outside the Box!
Workshop Tools: Presentation, Hands-on, with participants contributions
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.
Skill Level for this workshop: Accordionists who read music will benefit most; all are welcome!
Memorizing and Sight Reading
This workshop enlarges on two of the practice techniques explored in the earlier workshop. “Why should a musician want to memorize music, and what are the benefits of memorizing?”are two questions that we will attempt to answer in this workshop. We will discuss ways to make memorizing music easier—and more trustworthy under pressure.
The second component in this workshop will be sight reading techniques. The ability to sight read well enables an accordionist to learn a new piece faster and to be a more versatile musician. Skill Level: Ability to read music
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.
The amazing versatility of the accordion is demonstrated by the great variety of ethnic genres in which it is prominently featured. However, it is not often used for the serious study of music, where the piano is the most obvious (if not the most frequent) choice. However, the recent increase in popularity of the accordion, in combination with its high portability, suggests that, with the strategy proposed in this presentation, it could have the potential to become the premier acoustic keyboard instrument of the 21st century. On another note, what would it take to change the perception of the digital accordion from a "fake electronic imitation" to that of a "real musical instrument?" Digital accordionists can benefit from observations involving electronic musical instruments that started as imitations and succeeded in establishing their own identities. An open-discussion format will allow participants to share their own ideas regarding ways to make these and other good things happen. George's accordions will be displayed in Salon A.
Demonstration with Audience Feedback, Friday 10:00 am. Salon B
George Secor is a former student of Mario Moschino
, the inventor of the Moschino free bass system. After playing the conventional Stradella system of basses and chords for about twelve years, he switched to the Moschino free bass in 1961, and it so revolutionized his playing that he has never even entertained the idea of going back. Following a hiatus of approximately twenty years, during which he pursued various other musical interests, he has been rebuilding both his classical and jazz repertoire on the Moschino free bass accordion. He has recently arranged for an accordion manufacturer in Italy to put the Moschino system back into production, and the first new model, the 18-lb. entry-level "mini-Moschino
", is now available! Mr. Secor has a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the VanderCook College of Music. He currently resides in Godfrey, Illinois.
Decades of Accordion Sounds
Matt Tolentino will present the accordion through the early stages of Vaudeville and Tin Pan Alley, it's role in early dance bands, and will briefly discuss the great early accordionists, and how they helped shape the accordion's role in twentieth century popular music. Matt will perform on vintage accordions of the period, and will augment his live performances with recorded examples of the music, and will have other items on display such as sheet music and 78 rpm records.
This is a presentation/demonstration workshop: Friday, 4:30 pm. Salon B
Matt Tolentino is an accordionist based in Dallas, TX, and is a popular solo artist and band leader. Matt specializes in traditional jazz and ragtime, and brings a unique perspective to the accordion. Together with his vocals, Matt uses the accordion to bring to the listener the music of Tin Pan Alley - jazz standards, ragtime, parlor songs, and comedy numbers, all popular during the years 1895 - 1935. His performances are always very entertaining, and engage the audience with jokes and anecdotes about the musical selections. Furthermore this music is performed on antique accordions of the 1920s and 1930s, further accenting the authenticity of his performances.
Sharing his birthday with Fred Astaire, Matt Tolentino was born May 10, 1985. Some say he was born 80 years too late, but Tolentino will argue this is not the case, as his mission is to preserve traditional music for the modern audience for years to come. Tolentino’s music is unique- his main focus is on pre-swing American popular song, roughly 1895- 1935. Rags, marches, fox trots, waltzes, one-steps, oriental fox trots- even polkas- all the while saluting great composers like Berlin, Tilzer, Joplin, Donaldson, and so on. His music even incorporates foreign dances that gradually found their way to the American dance floor, such as the tango, the paseo, and the maxixe. As a true multi-instrumentalist, he plays accordion, piano, banjo, tuba, clarinet, and saxes. At home in Dallas, TX, Tolentino does a lot of work in solo, trio, and quartet settings. He is also a band leader, with The Royal Klobasneks- a traditional polka band- and The Singapore Slingers, a 19 piece unit specializing in pre-swing dance music of 1900-1935, with a big emphasis on the hot music of the 1920s and early 30s.
Never Make Another Mistake In Your Music
"To error is human;" HOWEVER, by following a few basic rules, & learning to use 7 different Non-Harmonic Functions, you can play your music without making mistakes. Definitely hands-on for all performance levels.
What Is "Middle C," Where Is It, & So What?
Simply put, it's in different places depending on what switch or register you're using. Learn what notes are sounding when you depress a key using various switches, & see how to get more sound using less fingers. Definitely hands-on for all performance levels.
2018 Bargain: Two workshops combined into one presentation!
Bring your accordion & music stand to this combined workshop: Saturday, 11:00 Ballroom
Dale E. Wise, M.M.E. is a professional educator, musician, composer, clinician, and designer of accordions and products for the accordionist. He taught secondary public school music in IL, AZ, and MD, and has always been "on a mission" to advance further interest in the accordion. Musical performance has played a big part in Mr. Wise's career. He is honored to have played his accordion for five U.S. Presidents, Hollywood celebrities, and corporate events as well as for children and adults in schools and churches throughout the country. He also produced and hosted "The Accordion Show" as seen on T.V. and YouTube.com.
So much of Mr. Wise's love for music stems from the teaching and guidance of his mentor, the late Carlos Santucci of Ottawa, IL. That joy continues, and is being passed on to others throughout the country through teaching, concerts, accordion repair workshops, master classes, and Accordions for Kids/U.S.A., a philanthropic national program Mr. Wise founded to introduce young people to the accordion. His enthusiasm for music and the accordion was the subject of several news articles that appeared in the Fredericksburg, VA Free-Lance Star, as well as a feature article in The Washington Post Magazine.