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What else do you listen to?

Ben-jammin

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"Indie music?πŸ€”
Independent music (often referred to as indie music or indie) is music produced independently from commercial record labels or their subsidiaries, a process that may include an autonomous, do-it-yourself approach to recording and publishing."
Right: now we're on the same page!πŸ˜€πŸ‘
And there I was thinking it was something peculiar to Indiana!πŸ˜…
I think this description for indie music captures the original spirit and etymology of the term, however since the term was coined it has been appropriated and applies more broadly to a genre of music where many of the artist are produced by commercial record labels. It’s a real hard genre to pin down because it’s come to be kind a catch all term for rock/pop/folk music that doesn’t easily fit somewhere else at the record store I.e. not trying to be hard rock or top 40 pop.
 

Siegmund

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Interesting! I'm always curious about people who don't have accordion music in their culture but learn to play..

That could be a thread all by itself!

I think I fall solidly in that category. While I have listened to lots of 19th-century waltzes and polkas I'd heard relatively few live modern polka bands. I did go through an obsession with Argentine tango circa 2006, which introduced me to the word "bandoneon" for the first time as well as the sound of same, but the idea of playing one didn't really cross my mind then.

For me it had more to do with liking the idea of a polyphonic instrument, and liking the sound of organs and woodwind instruments, but not having any great pre-existing keyboard skill to inspire me to actually be an organist. Being violently repulsed by electric guitar distortion, and somewhat less violently repulsed by the clanky non-sustaining timbre of piano, were secondary factors that eliminated other options.

It was only after I decided I wanted to learn accordion that I started seeking out accordion music, and discovered a) that there were quite a few good classical transcriptions out there and b) that there were modern serious accordion composers. I had never even heard the names of Zolotaryov or Semyonov or Gubaidulina, let alone heard a note of their music, until this year.
 
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Ben-jammin

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Interesting! I'm always curious about people who don't have accordion music in their culture but learn to play.. My background music was always rock (now known as "classic") and Americana, but I started playing accordion where old time waltzes and polkas were still a thing and the local accordion club (which I co-founded) was heavy on the "accordion industrial complex" repertoire of the 50s and 60s due to the nature of our co-founder, more experienced than me. But now I listen to almost exclusively Italian and Brazilian contemporary styles. A wholesale update of my repertoire is in order but where to turn? Adapt rock songs of my life? Turn to another cultural style? Make up my own tunes? It's a conundrum to be sure.
who's your audience? Adapting songs can be fun but good care needs to be taken to select the material, some stuff lends itself better to the sound envelope of an accordion than others.
 

Tom

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who's your audience? Adapting songs can be fun but good care needs to be taken to select the material, some stuff lends itself better to the sound envelope of an accordion than others.
Right now my audience is "let's see how covid is doing in January."
 

Ffingers

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who's your audience? Adapting songs can be fun but good care needs to be taken to select the material, some stuff lends itself better to the sound envelope of an accordion than others.
Audience?
Why do you need an audience?
In another post I mentioned my musical background https://www.accordionists.info/threads/playing-melodies-by-ear.8183/page-2#post-86134 in which I could have included the fact that, as often as not, the musicians were themselves the audience - the music was for us; we sang and played for ourselves as well as it being a community activity.
Perhaps think "Lonely shepherd playing a bone whistle to while away the hours" type of thing, or a group of blokes by the pub fire singing in 4 part harmony purely for the joy of it.
It's where the music comes from the heart, not necessarily from the head; where the pleasure of the sounds themselves takes precedence over the precision of performance.
 

Dingo40

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Ffingers,
My experience is similar πŸ™‚
Maybe that's why I can't relate to all this intellectualising about singing, notation, scales, and muscle memory?πŸ€”
For me, singing and whistling are what you've done since toddlerhood: they come naturally like speaking : no thinking required. ( Of course, it pays to put your brain into gear before opening your mouth!🀣)
Interestingly, few of the early popular singers (Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong,Doris Day, Edith Piaf even Pavarotti) had any significant "formal " training background: they just sang and improved on the job or simply dropped out.
 
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Valski

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You're making me introspect a bit Tom, that's good. I assume you are referring to music that is traditionally associated with accordions. Since starting to study accordion again I've listened to more strictly "accordion" music than I had in about the previous 20 years. Before that on rare occasions I would look up a video for a song like dark eyes or a tango because I wanted to hear it, and if there was a accordionist playing live somewhere I would hang around and enjoy the show. During that time I was occasionally playing accordion for myself, mostly my own songs and maybe practice a few Christmas songs around the holidays. Now that I'm studying my focus is on developing my skills on the instrument so I'm learning the regular tangos, waltzes, and polkas (and that's about the order in which I prefer them). I don't dislike polka music or anything, it goes great with beer and friends. I just have to be in a really specific mood to want to listen to it by myself. I also have slight concern about validating the common (at least where I live) misconception that polka is the ONLY music the accordion is suitable to play. I am happy to learn how to play tangos, waltzes and polkas to develop my skills and I plan to keep these songs available to play, it isn't my intention to be an expert in these styles. My goal with the accordion is to be able to play at a reasonable level of skill many of the styles of music I like. This will let me best utilize the instrument in my original compositions and allow me to go out with a single instrument and entertain people. I think I'm approaching the point where I can start trying to tackle some baroque pieces. I really like the sound of this but I have a suspicion the skill level required to play it will elude me.
The thing I like about indie music is that it has a very wide aesthetic, taking cues from a wide variety of existing styles of music. There are several bands in this genre that use accordions in various degrees (even though they are using them I think they could use them in a better way ;-) ). I wouldn't call this "accordion" music but a lot of it can be adapted to accordion. This is the kind of music I write mostly.

While I love hearing an accordion, by itself it can get tedious after a while and with some complimentary instruments can be more interesting. Personally I feel that waltzes are best suited for the accordion and if played reasonably well audiences also seem to react the same way. Tangos are good but so are foxtrots and rumbas as well as chachas. One of the main reasons that I invested in a Roland Fr8x was because I could make the accompaniment more interesting and sounding like it should for those various styles. As much as I like complimentary instruments it's difficult to find someone on the same schedule with whom you can play.

I cheat a little using music for the keyboard which consists of the lead and the complimentary chords. This also reduces the need to turn pages when using paper charts. Keyboard music also tends to have mostly contemporary music so it might help you to expand your repertoire.
 

Ben-jammin

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Right now my audience is "let's see how covid is doing in January."
Fair enough. I was mostly trying to make the point that most decisions with making a repertoire are dependent on anticipating what your audience wants to hear.
Audience?
Why do you need an audience?
In another post I mentioned my musical background https://www.accordionists.info/threads/playing-melodies-by-ear.8183/page-2#post-86134 in which I could have included the fact that, as often as not, the musicians were themselves the audience - the music was for us; we sang and played for ourselves as well as it being a community activity.
Perhaps think "Lonely shepherd playing a bone whistle to while away the hours" type of thing, or a group of blokes by the pub fire singing in 4 part harmony purely for the joy of it.
It's where the music comes from the heart, not necessarily from the head; where the pleasure of the sounds themselves takes precedence over the precision of performance.
If the performer is the only audience, I think the point still stands, which was that decision for music choice should be influenced by the expected audience.
 

Ffingers

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Ffingers,
My experience is similar πŸ™‚
Maybe that's why I can't relate to all this intellectualising about singing, notation, scales, and muscle memory?πŸ€”
For me, singing and whistling are what you've done since toddlerhood: they come naturally like speaking : no thinking required. ( Of course, it pays to put your brain into gear before opening your mouth!🀣)
I fear that there is a distinct lack of musicality in some people who want to become musicians for reasons other than the simple enjoyment of it.
A little anecdote:
In an occupation where speaking English in a precise and accurate manner, one of the workers - a very efficient one at that - had a strong Scottish accent which was very hard to understand; he eventually had to leave the 'coal face' because foreign clients who had learned English as a foreign language were unable to comprehend his utterings: This was in a working environment where accurate and rapid responses to instructions given could be critical.
As could be realised when he'd had a few ales at a social gathering, he was quite tone deaf - never, not ever able to sing in tune, which was undoubtedly the underlying cause of his inability to adjust his accent to a more 'International' way of speaking.
Musicality is to a large degree innate - you either have it or not.
Beethoven continued composing long after his hearing faded; Mozart is reputed to have arranged full orchestral scores whilst confined to his bed: Both 'heard' the music in their heads.
Others, like my Scottish friend, would never master even the simplest act of music making and simultaneously be quite unable to recognise that lack of inborn ability.
In such cases, teaching music might be akin to trying to explain the colour of a banana to a congentially blind person.
 

Tom

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Fair enough. I was mostly trying to make the point that most decisions with making a repertoire are dependent on anticipating what your audience wants to hear.

If the performer is the only audience, I think the point still stands, which was that decision for music choice should be influenced by the expected audience.
I agree. There are tunes that I like to play that just don't go over well. People seem to want to hear what they know, or what they deem familiar. I have only been playing one venue since covid and I am a little concerned about that one. I had hoped to branch out a little more these past two years. There are tunes I just like to play, as I am most of my audience lately.
 

pillbugg

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I drift all over the place, but I often find myself enjoying songs that have playful, cartoony elements.


No vocals on this one, but it is nice to listen to both instrumental music, and songs with vocals.


Who knew accordions and songs about sleep go so well together? In fact, all 4 songs that I've shown feature the sounds of accordions. Just goes to show how much playfulness the accordion adds to songs.


I vastly prefer women's vocals, but I quite like this cartoony song that features male vocals. It's about a ghost that falls in love with the beautiful daughter of a gravedigger.


Now this is a weird one, as one can guess by this experimental rock band's name. They somehow managed to blend childish, vicious, and chaotic sounds into one twisted package. The song I posted here is one of the few tame songs that they have made (just a warning if anyone decides to listen to other songs by them). I am a fan of them. I admire their creativity... and no, I definitely do not have a thing for evil accordion-playing tan clown gals because of the lead singer! :ROFLMAO:

One of my YouTube digs lead me to Natalia LaFourcade once. I admit she is sort of a mixed bag, but this song and especially how it's presented is just perfection.

I'm almost sure it can't be recorded 100% live in that setting, but they present it like it is done in that moment.

This is 100% done right and I can enjoy that very much. Maybe you can too:


Oh hey, another person that likes Natalia LaFourcade. I have found myself liking quite a few of her songs, especially the older ones.

Anyways happy new years everyone :) (this was posted a couple days until the years starts where I live).
 
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