• If you haven't done so already, please add a location to your profile. This helps when people are trying to assist you, suggest resources, etc. Thanks

Beginner looking for your favourite accordionists?

The trad group I play with has added "Da Lounge Bar" to our performing roster, a lovely composition by Scandinavian diato player Annlaug Borsheim, titled in honor of a trad music pub in the Shetland Islands:
That is a great tune! It sounded SO familiar and, sure enough, it showed up at least 6 different times as liked/saved in my YouTube history, played by various artists. Archie Churchill-Moss does a nice version as does this group:

It just jumped to the front of the line for tunes to learn today during Arctic blizzard lockdown.
Last edited:
They had great stage performance talent. Them along with Frankie Yankovich made accordion playing appear to be fun and easy. That may be why accordion was so popular in the states during the late 50's and early 60's. I remember as a kid (I'm 68) going to see Myron Floren with my parents. I really enjoy this forum and I am learning so much.
I'm on the younger end (55) of those that experienced The Lawrence Welk show in real time. My grandmother would come over every weekend to watch us while our parents went out and at 7pm on Saturday night there was only one thing on our TV. Because I played accordion I would always wait for Myron's performance but in the meantime I would get quite accustomed to The Champagne Lady, Bobby and Sissy, Guy and Rana (sp?), etc. It was a good time in life.
It’s my first post here, so first and foremost - Hi to you all!

For years I loathed accordions, being exposed to them solely in the form of poor gypsy buskers making noise on the sunday mornings. But then I heard some finer performances, that got me hooked on the free reed sound. Those are all over the place, but in each case thise are my favourites in the particular genre.

First, polish rock bands, Kult, Hurt, and Grabaż i Strachy Na Lachy. A fun fact I learned later on - it’s the same accordionist in those latter two:)

Next up, unoriginal I know, but I can’t help it - Yann Tiersen. He, Beirut mentioned above and Dansbanan were the ultimate triggers that ignited my own free reed journey. At first into concertinas, currently branching to accordions since concertinas have a ceiling of what can you do with them.

And the ultimate love of mine, Cracow Klezmer Band. Simply stunning, both compositions and renditions, so in their case, a link:
Let’s not forget “Mestrinho” as an introduction to jazz accordion in the forró style. Here with Chico Cesar and Mariana Audra at Canto da Ema:

It's beautiful of course, but I have heard nicer renditions... what I noticed is that she literally used the entire keyboard on that song and even manages to run out of notes up top, nicely hidden with a register change instead. That song may be a good example of why NOT to have a keyboard with fewer notes. :)
While some people play Indifference with more embellishments, I've never heard anybody play it with better phrasing than Karen. And, she plays very cleanly ... a bit of "light between the notes" where appropriate, great timing, etc. Personally, it drives me crazy to play an accordion with less than 41 keys, but Karen seems to make the best of it.
And my favorite is Kimmo Pohjonen, I'm he wasn't mentioned here at all, he is like one of the top accordionists of all time.
Ah, well if we're talking the top accordionists of all time...

I can't see beyond Salvatore Di Gesualdo. Here he plays Toccata by Bernardo Pasquini, (1637 to 1710). Enchanting...

Been listening to this today - really interesting and I like the fact button mechanism noise of the accordion is an integral part of the music.
You've got amazing knowledge! - how did you discover all this stuff?
Thank you! Zabelov, I had a pleasure of meeting him, and then I've seen him perform live in Poland (he still often performs in Germany and other EU countries). Honestly, a shame he is not more well known, I don't know many accordionists who surpass his emotional intensity.

And Pohjonen, once I've seen this performance, I just went down the rabbit hole and researched everything I could find on him.
What also helped with discovering good stuff? I was an active participant in accordion competitions during the 2010s, so I talked with participants about music sometimes. I used to go to every half-decent accordion performance in my city, especially during an autumn Vilnius Accordion Festival, that always had something interesting.

Ohh another good find, Claudio Jacomucci