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Battagliero (most of the time)

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maugein96

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Sax and accordion in Bologna folk style. 

The players are both big names in Emilia Romagna, and the tune is an old liscio/filuzzi standard. 

The bands often feature sax, clarinet, and other instruments, all playing tunes that were principally composed for accordion.


The Mengascini played by Athos Bassissi is of particular interest (to me at any rate), as it is built to French specification, except for the large treble buttons. I have a 4 row Marinucci CBA with the same sized buttons, and I find that it is a whole lot easier to play than my other instruments, which all have the smaller French buttons. 

Ive seen three different diameters of treble buttons used in Italian CBAs, and the ones on the Mengascini in the clip are of medium diameter.
 

Tom

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They are definitely having fun!
 
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maugein96

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Tom said:
They are definitely having fun!

Hi Tom,

The compere with the long blond hair is a virtuoso clarinetist and he often appears in the various line ups.

It's something I've never encountered anywhere else other than in Balkan ensembles.

I think they are described as "show bands" and the line up will vary from time to time, with guest accordionists etc. 

Athos Bassissi, who is from the Bologna area, went "French" for a while and played a lot of jazzy French musette in Paris. However, as you say he appears to be having fun back home, as are the other musicians in the clip.
 
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Stephen pid=69618 dateline=1580138273 said:
I sometimes play this tune, its a charming Italian tune, Battagliero.
I play this basic 2 pages version:

https://mariolanza65.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/lo-spartito-di-battagliero/

Hi Stephen,

Thanks for the copy of the score. Its been a while since I last tried it, but Ill give it another go. The basic version of anything will do me nicely. 

First time I heard it was Gigi Stok and Carlo Venturi in a duet.

There are many old Italian musette tunes, but they never got the same promotion as their French equivalents.
 

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Thanks John and Stephen!
 
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To m pid=69624 dateline=1580156247 said:
Thanks John and Stephen!

One of the greatest exponents of the Italian musette style, Gigi Stok (Luigi Stocchi), from Parma, playing a typical Emilia Romagna style mazurka:-


 

Ive mentioned this before, but he, Barimar (Mario Barigazzi), and Daniele Donadelli, were some of the very few Italian accordionists who made recordings using the Modenese bass. They are/were all from the Parma area, where that type of bass was found. I do understand it has become very rare, and Donadelli appears to be the last pro player standing who still plays Modenese bass. He even has a French tuned Crosio with Belgian/Modenese basses that he uses to play French musette.  

Barimar would occasionally take the stage with a normal Stradella bass accordion, but when he did so he never played the bass side.

Another oldie from Parma was Nando Monica, who would probably also have played Modenese bass, but I cannot be certain of that. He had an accordion shop in Parma, and latterly played a Cooperfisa CBA.

EDIT:- Found a photo of Nando Monica and the instrument in the pic had Stradella bass.

Also, the Allodi family who own the accordion shop in London were from the Parma area, and one of their number, Umberto Allodi, who was a pro player in Italy, played a Modenese bass CBA.
 
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Stephen pid=69676 dateline=1580335884 said:
This one sounds a bit like Italian musette, its called Lupin , valzer di Castellina Pasi. 
Very beautiful, I can smell Paris and La Seine.


In case you want to play it, one version of this tune + the chords are:
http://www.accordionchiarenza.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/lupin3-fisarmonica.pdf

Hi Stephen,

Beautiful tune well played by William, and thanks very much for the link to the score. Reckon Ill have a go at this one.

Italian musette never got the exposure that its French equivalent did, and the players and the music are still virtually unknown. 

The band Castellina Pasi was formed by the accordionist, Roberto Giraldi, from Faenza in Emilia Romagna. He used to play a Lucchini accordion mounted on a stand, and successive accordionists who replaced him in the band often did likewise. 

Louis Ferrari and Tony Murena were just two Italian accordionists who moved to Paris from Emilia Romagna, and both of them continued to play in the Italian style in their new home. Jo Privat remarked on the fact that Murena never shook his Italian way of playing off, and there is little doubt that French musette benefitted greatly from the Italian influence. In fact there was a time when a very large percentage of the big name French musette players were of Italian descent. Baselli, Azzola, Corti, Tuveri, Balta, Peguri, Gardoni, Guerino, Rossi, Parachini, the list is almost endless. Privat himself had Italian relatives. 


Thanks again for the clip and the score!
 

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Thanks for the clips and info guys! As a couple updates, Castellina Pasi is still going strong and Lupin is the soundtrack of an animated cartoon.
 
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maugein96

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Tom said:
Thanks for the clips and info guys!  As a couple updates, Castellina Pasi is still going strong and Lupin is the soundtrack of an animated cartoon.

Hi Tom,

Wasn't sure if Castellina Pasi was still on the go, and thanks for confirmation of that. The line up is way different to what it was when I first took an interest in music from that area.

I did wonder about Lupin. I've seen the cartoon character but never made the connection.
 

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Well, just for you, John, here they are, still with a stand, and with their original tune (from 2012)....


They are still a solid pop vocals oriented musica da ballo band with accordion flavor:

 
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maugein96

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Tom pid=69688 dateline=1580415515 said:
Well, just for you, John, here they are, still with a stand, and with their original tune (from 2012)....


They are still a solid pop vocals oriented musica da ballo band with accordion flavor:


Thanks Tom,

What confused me in all of this was Massimo Castellina inherited Giraldis accordion in 2000, and he became the principal accordionist in the band for a while. 

At one stage I believed that the orchestra was just named after Massimo, who sadly died in 2014, at the age of about 45.

If your Italian is up to it, here is the relatively short bio of Massimo Castellina, who was a pupil of Giraldis. 

Massimo was originally a PA player who converted to CBA, via the bandoneon, and IMHO he always looked awkward when playing CBA, which he played as though it was a PA. An excellent player on both types nevertheless, and yet another relatively unknown pro player from Emilia Romagna. 



This is my favourite Italian style. Filuzzi from Bologna.


Not too adventurous, and you get the feeling you might even be able to play it!


I particularly like this one.


The entire genre consists of valzer, mazurka, and polka. Music made for the accordion.
 

Tom

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Yes, basically Giraldi was nicknamed "Castellina" because he came from that town. He formed the band Castellina Pasi with his clarinetist friend Giovanni Pasi back in the 60s. They had a good long run and the band continued after Giraldi retired in 94. As you note, the band continued with various personnel, continuing in the "liscio" dance style (English "smooth"). The band is now directed by lead singer Elena Cammarone, and the accordionist is Bruno Vischi.
 

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Thanks for the further clips of this "filuzzi" style John, I like it a lot. Luckily the biography is spoken slowly so I could pick up most of it. In the description of that second clip (ca' rossa) there is an interesting intro to the style snd that you can get the sheet music and backing track from the Novalis website so even you could play it. I would like to add a few of these to my repertoire. So much music, so little time. Please post more of your favs when you get the chance!
 
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Tom said:
Thanks for the further clips of this "filuzzi" style John, I like it a lot.  Luckily the biography is spoken slowly so I could pick up most of it.  In the description of that second clip (ca' rossa) there is an interesting intro to the style snd that you can get the sheet music and backing track from the Novalis website so even you could play it.   I would like to add a few of these to my repertoire.  So much music, so little time.  Please post more of your favs when you get the chance!

Hi Tom,

For avoidance of doubt, when you google "Castellina" it usually takes you to the town of that name in the Chianti area of Tuscany. 

The Castellina subject to the documentary is the village in the Parma province of Emilia Romagna, near Faenza. 

I don't speak Italian, as I was too preoccupied with trying to brush up on my French so I could teach myself French musette. 

My French is pretty poor, like my accordion playing. 

As I've said before, I knew nothing at all about accordions in Italy until an old friend of mine introduced me to the Italian version of musette. I still don't know very much, but I find the music very entertaining, usually without all the overblown fuss of French musette.  

You can get the scores of whole albums by Carlo Venturi, Gigi Stok, and others on Novalis, although as you say so much music, so little time. 

My interest in Italian accordion music is almost exclusively concentrated on the CBA players of the north, but you'll know there are a lot of great PA players in the north, as well as elsewhere in Italy. 

When I lived in Edinburgh there were several thriving Italian communities in the north of the city. A lot of them were from the Lazio area, but I never really got to know many of them, except the shopkeepers. A lot of very nice Italian CBA accordions used to do the rounds in the local music shops. They were a bit cheaper than the equivalent Scottish tuned versions, as they took longer to sell, and some of them were only 3 voice LMM treble, which didn't cut it for Scottish music at all. 

The only Italian box I have is a 4 row LMM Marinucci, and it has reeds pinned on leather. Sounds more Italian than my other boxes, but I reckon waxed reeds would probably give it that bit of extra bark. 

I'll put on some other stuff from You Tube from time to time, and I'll try and avoid the thousand notes a minute whizz kids.
 

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Good! Well, as you know, I have several new and have restored more than a few Italian and German accordions, although I have mostly decided to concentrate more on playing than restoring. My level is probably not that much different than yours, but I have big fun! Yeah, my tastes pretty much go to the Italian and Brazilian accordionists who play in the "less than a mile a minute" styles, as well the people who post on here. Looking forward to seeing more of your picks. Thanks!
 
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maugein96

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Tom pid=69706 dateline=1580498314 said:
Good!  Well, as you know, I have several new and have restored more than a few Italian and German accordions,  although I have mostly decided to concentrate more on playing than restoring.  My level is probably not that much different than yours, but I have big fun!  Yeah, my tastes pretty much go to the Italian and Brazilian accordionists who play in the less than a mile a minute styles, as well the people who post on here.  Looking forward to seeing more of your picks.  Thanks!

Here is Hollywood, Italian style, for all you US ex-pat Italians:-


Cristina is one of those players possessed of a great personality that matches her ability as an accordionist.


Heres what Italians did for French musette.

 

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"Christina is one of those players possessed of a great personality that matches her ability as an accordionist."

Cool, jazzy tune, thanks John, don't know of her.
 
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Tom pid=69716 dateline=1580562777 said:
Christina is one of those players possessed of a great personality that matches her ability as an accordionist.

Cool, jazzy tune, thanks John, dont know of her.

Hi Tom,

She is one of the Bologna crowd and has made a few albums. She may have been a pupil of the late Carlo Venturi, along with Barbara Lucchi, as I believe they are about the same age. 

I tried to find some bio of her, but to no avail, although she regularly appears along with the big names in her home area. Another northerner with a CBA, and a larger than life image. She possibly stopped playing pro for a while, but as I say I dont really know very much about her. 

One of the most famous PA players in the area is the blind guy, Massimo Tagliata. He often also appears on piano in some combos. 


Pretty heavy jazz, but nice sounds from that accordion!
 
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