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What are your goals and why?

Tom

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The fine "accordion as a career" thread leads naturally to a discussion of goals of playing accordion, and of the people on this board, specifically.

Ok, I'll start with some background. My story is probably similar to a lot of yours. I worked hard all my life at jobs I did not particularly like, or was particularly suited for. I ended up with a solid middle class retirement, with the ability to afford a decent accordion and the exorbitant US health care costs. I don't need to or care about making money with my music.

I wanted to play instruments always, played in several amateur bands and spent the past few years playing guitar, accordion and singing at senior, Alzheimer's and other community events, which I enjoyed greatly, and saw as a way to contribute back to my community. I'm not particularly talented, but learned to listen to the audience and entertain them.

Which brings me, finally, to my goals.

1. To improve my technique on the accordion, by perfecting my accuracy, chording, fills, improvisation and overall musicality.

2. To build a repertoire, by memory and/or reading that allows me to play a two hour set at different venues, without playing the same songs each time.

3. To get back to playing somewhere regularly (after covid), say 4 or 5 times a month.

4. To broaden the types of venues and styles that I play, for example, being able to do a background, improvising jazz set at a restaurant, art opening or coffee house.

5. Start another accordion club in my new location, to meet and play with other accordionists.

So, there you have it. What about you? What are your goals for our beloved instrument? You know you have them, confessing will make them real, like the man says, "visualize, and you will achieve."
 

Chickers

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TOM:
Great !! Very ambitious as well, but it sounds like you're "on your game", and heading in the right direction.
I wish you all the success in all your musical endeavors and fulfill your goals.
I thank you for sharing part of your life.
I can relate to most everything you have outlined, and many the same or similar goals---- although maybe at a different level.
I started playing the accordion just a couple years ago---with virtually NO musical experience----and I'm a "senior" senior,
so my ambitions certainly exceed my abilities. (by margins)
I'm having fun (usually) I'm learning (slowly) I'm getting an opportunity to talk, laugh, and correspond with real musicians
(mostly in awe) and I think, I'm beginning to understand music. It's exciting, it's certainly a challenge.
Hopefully we will all get opportunities to personally meet some of our compatriots in this "musicianship" lifepath we have chosen.
Take care
CHICKERS
SEVEN HILLS, OH USA
 

lmschgo

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Tom
Though I have aspirations similar to your goals 1 and 2, an important reason for me choosing to play a musical instrument at this time in my life, is the accordion's physical and mental challenges. I am on the cusp of retirement and figured that learning the accordion will help maintain my mental acuity, hopefully holding at bay some the effects of aging. If and when I hit the goals you described, so much the better. Good luck to you.
Howard
 
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NickC

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Good thread idea. For me:

-I'd like to get to the point where I'm comfortable enough to start gigging. I have about a half of a set that I'm trying to get tighter. I'm also trying to pick more repertoire to learn.

-I'd like to continue to grow as a musician, by working on my technique and playing with more emotion. Right now, I can play through my 1/2 set, but it's not consistent. I record myself a lot, and I would like to sound and look a lot more comfortable while playing.

-I'd like to be more active in my community through music.

-I'd like to continue to enjoy the whole process.

-I want my kids to hear an obscure filuzzi waltz playing in the background on TV, many years in the future, and have them tell their grand kids that they remember hearing their father play this on his accordion.
 

debra

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Interesting thread!
I am basically doing three things: 1) I play the accordion, 2) I repair and tune accordions and 3) I make arrangements for accordion ensembles (large and small). I have tried to make sense of why I am doing precisely these three things, and came up with the following:
1) I've been playing the accordion for about 50 years, and I like paying, performing, and playing together with others. It's mostly a social activity, but I combine that with aiming high in terms of level of perfection.
2) In order to really enjoy playing the instruments need to be in good working order and also tuned very well. As I was generally not sufficiently satisfied with repairs done by others I took courses to learn to do repairs myself, where tuning is the focus of what I do.
3) I'm not getting any younger and I want to leave a "legacy". I do not believe in the fiction of religion, but I do know of a way to achieve "life" after death: to leave something behind that people can remember me through, and that's my music: my arrangements and recordings, but mostly the arrangements. (The recordings serve to illustrate what an arrangement sounds like before people start putting in effort to play it.)
I have no illusion that my professional life, with research and many publications will be remembered for very long. Sure, my name will appear in databases of scientific research, but nobody will use the actual work. But music is different: I do believe that I am offering a service to the accordion community that people may possibly remember me by for a long time to come.

Oh, and I was never in the accordion community for the chicks, even though I met my first and second (now current) wife through the accordion.
 

Glug

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I did get a round of applause from 3 young ladies in a flat upstairs while practising in the back garden last summer :)
One of them also said "nice music selection".
Maybe it was the covid lockdown madness but I like to think I'm getting better and if it results in female attention so much the better.

Back in reality I'd like to be able to play some of the music I really like and I quite like tinkering with the inside of accordions.

Currently my only real target is to outlive covid so I can get some in-person lessons.
 

cat

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Like Nick, I have an interest in 'community' music-making, and use accordion for its performing efficacy. Other instruments I play are much more problematic for playing out (tuning, mobility, etc) and accordions are perfect for playing out. Prior to covid I would organize jam sessions and typically used accrdns for that.
 

Scuromondo

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[Sorry, somehow my post was duplicated, so I’ve deleted the content of this one. I’m not sure if there is a way to delete it in its entirety.]
 
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Scuromondo

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My immediate goals are fairly modest. After picking the accordion up (following a 35 year hiatus) my initial goal was simply to start through all of my lesson books, one by one. I’ve done that.

Currently, I am about 3/4 of the way through “Adventures In Bassland” and about 1/4 through Gary Dahl’s “Getting Into Accordion.”

Of course, lesson books get quite boring, so I have supplemented them with a generous portion of sheet music and song books—mostly folk.

Still, I feel that I need some sort of structure in order to make progress. Learning the songs are fun and satisfying, but advancing through the lesson books give me more objective confidence that I am improving. After completing the Bassland book, I plan to start on “The Mighty Accordion” to further advance my bass skills. Then, after Getting Into Accordion, Dahl’s “Chord Melody Method” is already in queue.

...At my current rate of progress, by the time I finish with those I might be just about ready to retire!
 
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Tom

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Shallow as i may be... I'm in it for the chicks.... 👯
Brst of luck to you Terry!!! I'm married so I feel fortunate to have a large, heavy object between us to keep them at bay.....

Thanks for all your responses so far everyone, what a great, dedicated and smart group we have here! 👏👏👏
 

ArtMustel

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When I was in my 20's I used to play in many restaurants and night clubs in my country, always with guitars and bass or violins and bass. Never as a soloist. I was not a great accordionist but i was not too bad either. Then life changed completely and I forgot about the accordion for 40+ years, and just recently I started on it again. Not a good thing to do, everything now seems so difficult, but I am so happy when I play for my own enjoyment, repeating passages over and over, trying to get it back. Maybe that is my only goal.
 
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Women, fame, money, drugs, sex, international travel, top of the bill in Vegas.

OK, none of the above.

Actually, apart from just having some fun, I am just trying to be as good a musician as my mother was.
She played piano as a kid, then accordion (in a small band back in the 40's/50's) then electronic organ (Hammond/Lowery type) in the clubs in England. Could sight read like you read a book and play pretty much anything. Always ended up playing on the sea front organs on the pier (often taking over from the paid entertainer LOL) at the seaside when we went on holiday.
I am still working on it but I'm good enough (ie confident enough) to play old folks homes, farmers markets, open mics, coffee shops and heck, even just busk in the street or local park for the pure joy of just playing. One thing I don't do though is play bars, tried it, didn't enjoy it, don't have to do it so I don't!
Trying to learn more stuff 'by heart' but for most of the places I play, using a music stand is fine, 'almost' makes you look more professional (and if using music was ok for my mom, it's ok for me!).
 

Valski

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Brst of luck to you Terry!!! I'm married so I feel fortunate to have a large, heavy object between us to keep them at bay.....

Thanks for all your responses so far everyone, what a great, dedicated and smart group we have here! 👏👏👏
Yes the accordion can be a great method of birth control... especially while it's being played!
 

Alan Sharkis

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Right now, my goal is notating on the fly in AAA notation, using my Roland FR-4x and a MIDI Solutions Event Processor Plus into one of several notation programs and then writing up how I did it. (Hint: it's not as easy as it sounds.)
 
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