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U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Aug-2023
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Titano Accordion Company


Editor's Note
Highlights 85th Anniversary AAA Festival is a Huge Success!
Photo Report of 2023 Accordionists & Teachers Guild International (ATG) Festival
ATG Festival Receives National TV and Radio Coverage
Online: Gemini Duo Winners at Manhattan International Music Competition
C.J. Chenier Performs in Ohio
Elena Fainshtein and Lucas Kaspar Perform Accordion and Trombone Commission at ATG
2023 Cotati Festival on August 19 & 20
Accordion Pops Orchestra August Performances

Voci Armoniche

Reports for Concerts, Masterclasses, Competitions, Festivals, etc.

The Seminars, A New Film and a New Album
Steve Albini’s August Performances
Zydeco Accordionist Andre Thierry Performs in Richmond, CA
Remembering Lee Paulson
Passing of Steve Meisner, Well Known Polka Accordionist
Summer Accordion by Maria & Sergei Teleshev
Stowe Tango Music Festival August 18 - 20 in Vermont
Accordions Usher in SF Giants at Italian Heritage Night

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Future events

Accordions Around the World at Bryant Park, NYC
AAA Sunday Afternoon Accordion Celebration! on September 10
2024 Sail Away Polka Cruise

Over 2,100 titles of eSheet music, sent to you by email, secure server bank online payment



Editor's Note

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Rita Davidson BarneaDuring this hot summer, try lowering the temperature with some cool accordion music! Where is that happening? Everywhere. Picture right, I am performing at my Ettore Workshop at the AAA Festival.

Read the August news for fascinating information on July concerts, events, festivals, and competitions. Cotati Festival coming up soon.

See the extensive coverage of the AAA and ATG Festivals, both very successful and well attended! Start making plans to attend them in 2024.

Please continue to submit your ideas for future articles.

Send all to

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Highlights 85th Anniversary AAA Festival is a Huge Success!

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Frank Busso Sr.
Video 1:

Video 2:

Video 3:

Video 4:
2023 AAA Festival PostersVideo 1: Frank Busso Sr. AAA Lifetime Achievement Award Presentation speeches.

Video 2: The magnificent US Air Force Strolling Strings, "Thriller" by Michael Jackson, "Oblivion" by Astor Piazzolla. Featuring Frank Busso Jr. on accordion. Tribute to AAA Board Member and former Air Force Strings accordionist Lou Coppola at 6:27.

Video 3: Grayson Masefield performs two Baroque works.

Video 4: Grammy Award Winner Joey Miskulin

The 85th Anniversary American Accordionists' Association (AAA) Festival, held at the Marriott Philadelphia West in Conshohocken, PA, from July 12th to 16th, 2023, was a huge success. It featured world-class entertainers, workshops, competition for performers of all ages, exhibits, two festival orchestras, the presentation of the AAA Lifetime Achievement Award to Frank Busso Sr. and other exciting activities. The celebration of our beloved instrument continues, so join the fun and play the accordion!

For news and photos about each day of the festival, please visit the AAA Daily Reports at: 2023AAA85th

2023 AAA Color Journal (47 pages): Learn about AAA history, performers, events and more
Wednesday July 12, Daily Report
Thursday July 13, Daily Report
Friday July 14, Daily Report
Saturday July 15, Daily Report
Sunday July 16, Daily Report

The many activities of the AAA began on Wednesday, July 12, 2023 with exhibits, competitions, a workshop, and socializing during our Meet & Greet Reception. Thursday started off with two workshops and more competitions before we celebrated Accordion Day at the King of Prussia Mall. When we returned to the hotel in the afternoon, we had our first AAA Festival Orchestra rehearsal, followed by Pasta Night, with entertainment provided by AAA champion Mario Tacca, acclaimed vocalist Mary Mancini, and the Westmont Philharmonia Accordion Orchestra directed by Joanna Darrow.

Friday included time in the Exhibit Room, a pair of morning workshops, and our Luncheon concert with entertainment provided by world champion Grayson Masefield, AAA Coupe Mondiale representative Nathan Chapeton, and the Westmont Accordion Club. That was followed with two more afternoon workshops, competitions, the second AAA Festival Orchestra rehearsal, and our Gala Concert featuring Grammy winner Joey Miskulin, world champion Grayson Masefield, AAA champion Mario Tacca, and the Accordion Pops Orchestra conducted by Al Terzo.

On Saturday, there were more workshop, competitions, another visit to the Exhibit Room, our awards concert, and the final AAA Festival Orchestra rehearsal. The Gala Banquet included the 2023 AAA Festival Orchestra conducted by world-famous conductor Joan Cochran Sommers, The United States Air Force Strolling Strings with accordionist Frank Busso Jr., now a Senior Master Sergeant in the Air Force Strolling Strings and bandleader for the Busso Orchestra, and then the AAA Lifetime Achievement Award presentation to Frank Busso Sr.

2023AAAJournal.pdf (47 pages)): Learn about our performers, workshops, and AAA history.
Gala Banquet & Lifetime Achievement Award Program (20 pages)
There are many other downloads in the Daily Reports at: 2023AAA85th

Please visit the AAA website to see the past and future activities that the AAA is presenting.
To become an AAA member, simply complete the checkout process at AAA Shopping Cart

American Accordionists' Association (AAA}
c/o Rita Davidson Barnea, Secretary
211 Clarken Drive, West Orange, NJ 07052 USA
Phone: (201) 675-4861

The American Accordionists' Association (AAA) is a 501(c)(3) corporation. All donations are tax deductible to the extent of the law. The organization is open to all - anyone who plays or just loves the accordion.

Our next AAA event:
Sunday Afternoon Accordion Celebration! Sunday, September 10, 2023 - 12:00 noon
Famee Furlane Club: 2008 127th Street, College Point, NY 11356.
Details at:

The Ins and Outs of the Accordion by famous accordion repairer and tuner Thierry Benetoux

Photo Report of 2023 Accordionists & Teachers Guild International (ATG) Festival

by Harley Jones
ATG Poster
The Photo Report of the very successful 2023 Accordionists & Teachers Guild, International (ATG) Festival will be published on Wednesday, August 2.

This was the 81st Competition & Festival by the ATG and was held in Lisle, IL (Chicago) last week. Report Link will be listed here. The text under the pictures will be added in the next 24 hours.

Titano Accordion Company

ATG Festival Receives National TV and Radio Coverage

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
ATG logoVideo: NBC TV video on the ATG Festival

The 2023 ATG Festival was a huge success. There was extensive news coverage. This video was on NBC News Thursday, July 20, 2023

Additionally, Grayson Masefield and Jane Christison were on the air with Michelle Miller on the Basement Jukebox show. Jane shares, “The show should re-air on Saturday morning, July 29th, about 9:30 a.m. online. About 3-4 days after that, the show will be available on the website. Thanks to host Michelle Miller, who was great to work with!”

More reports on the ATG Festival to follow.

Voci Armoniche

Online: Gemini Duo Winners at Manhattan International Music Competition

by Mirco Patarini
ManhattanVideo: Gemini Duo performing "Escualo" by Astor Piazzolla.

The Manhattan International Music Competition showcases young classical musicians from around the world. Previous winners have performed at festivals and venues like Berlin Philharmonie and Konzerthaus, Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, Théâtre des Champs Elysées, Paris Philharmonie, Opera de Paris, Mozarteaum of Salzburg, Mariinsky Theatre and more. Maestro Ivo Pogorelich presided over the competition in which pianists, singers, strings, wind players, and chamber music ensembles participate. The Gala concert featured performances by international winners. 

The Gemini Duo (China/Denmark) won the online Chamber Music category of the Manhattan International Music Competition, held online this year.

The winner’s concert was held live at Carnegie Hall in Manhattan, New York, USA on July 15th, 2023.

The duo featured accordionists Wanchen Zhao and Wanxu Zhao, who are both studying at the Royal Academy of Music in Copenhagen, Denmark, with Geir Draugsvoll.

Accordion Jazz Chords

C.J. Chenier Performs in Ohio

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News

CJVideo 1: Zydeco Boogaloo - CJ Chenier and the Red Hot Louisiana Band
Video 2: CJ Chenier & The Red Hot Louisiana Band: "Jambalaya" (July 3, 2022; Fitzgeralds, Berwyn, IL)

C. J. Chenier and his Red Hot Louisiana Band, as the King of Zydeco and Swamp Rock, brings his soulful rockin sounds to Natalies Grandview on Saturday night August 5, 2023 at 7:PM (doors open). Showtime: 8:PM. Reserved $30.00 General $25.00

Creole-born C.J. Chenier was raised in an indigenous American culture with its distinctive language, cuisine and music. He delivers soulful vocals along with masterful accordion-driven Zydeco and Blues.

Clayton Joseph (CJ) Chenier was born September 28, 1957. Excerpts from his website: He’s the son of the great King of Zydeco, Clifton Chenier, the first Creole musician to win a Grammy Award. CJ spent his childhood in the tough tenement housing projects of Port Arthur, Texas. His earliest musical influences were an eclectic mix of funk, soul, jazz, and Motown, and his first musical instruments were piano, tenor saxophone and flute. It wasn’t until his 21st birthday, after winning a scholarship and studying music at Texas Southern University, that CJ first performed with his famous father and the legendary Red Hot Louisiana band.

When Clifton died in 1987, his son said it only felt natural to carry on the legacy—and he stepped up to lead the Red Hot Louisiana Band. He recorded his debut album for the great American independent label, Arhoolie Records. As he told a journalist at the time, he does not try to imitate his father’s playing: “I play it the way I play it. All my father really told me was to do the best I could do with my own style.”

Today, CJ continues to record and rack up honors and awards. This year, he is being honored along with his late friend, Clifford Antone, in Port Arthur’s acclaimed Museum of the Gulf Coast Music Hall of Fame, where he will join the likes of Janis Joplin, Tex Ritter, Percy Sledge, George Jones, Marcia Ball, Johnny Winter, The Big Bopper, ZZ Top and, of course, his father, Clifton Chenier.

He appeared on the Daily Show, CNN and was featured on VH1 and Entertainment Weekly. He has exhibited his musicianship at many large festivals and venues such as the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Chicago Blues Festival and Austin’s SXSW Music Conference. In addition to his GRAMMY® award nomination in the Best Regional Roots Music Album category, C.J. has received many major awards including the Living Blues Critics’ Poll Award, Indie Award (from AFIM) for Best Zydeco Album, Coups de Coeur (Blows of Heart), Blues Category Award from l'Académie Charles Cros (France) and Best of the Beat Best Zydeco Album (Offbeat Magazine).

In addition to his GRAMMY® award nomination in the Best Regional Roots Music Album category, C.J. has received many major awards including the Living Blues Critics’ Poll Award, Indie Award (from AFIM) for Best Zydeco Album, Coups de Coeur (Blows of Heart), Blues Category Award from l’Académie Charles Cros (France) and Best of the Beat Best Zydeco Album (Offbeat Magazine

For further information:
The Kurland Agency


Elena Fainshtein and Lucas Kaspar Perform Accordion and Trombone Commission at ATG

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Elena, Lucas, studentsElena and LucasElena Fainshtein, professional accordionist, performer, teacher, owner of the accordion school, Musical Expressions, in Texas was contacted by professional trombonist, Lucas Kaspar, who commissioned a composition for trombone and accordion by composer Dr. Michael Johnson entitled, “Opa’s Yodel” in memory of his grandfather, Johann Kaspar. Elena and Lucas performed this new composition at the International Trombone Festival in Salt Lake City, Utah on July 14th 2023 and at the 2023 ATG Festival on July 21st 2023.

Elena felt honored to be the only accordionist at ITF. The International Trombone Festival is an annual multi-day event featuring all things trombone. Artists, teachers, students, professionals, industry leaders, and hobbyists gather to celebrate and explore the many facets and styles of trombone playing, teaching, and craftsmanship.The location of the ITF moves around the world on an annual basis. Most festivals occur in the United States, but the ITF frequently occurs in other countries worldwide.

Elena said, “I am so thankful for the opportunity to perform at the International Trombone Festival. Lucas Kaspar and I also truly enjoyed playing "Opa's Yodel" at the ATG! Thank you, Joan Sommers, for inviting us! Thank you to my students, family and friends. It was an incredible time for all. Thank you, ATG!

Dr. Lucas Kaspar earned a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree in trombone performance from The Ohio State University in 2018 and a Master of Music degree from The University of Alabama in 2013. He is Assistant Professor of Music at Cameron University in Lawton Oklahoma. He is a founding member of the Ohio Trombone Quartet. Dr. Kaspar has performed with many orchestras, including the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Amarillo Symphony, Columbus Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Wheeling Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, Mobile Symphony and Tuscaloosa Symphony.

Trombonist Lucas Kaspar shares, “I am so glad I was able to attend and perform at the International Trombone Festival in Salt Lake City! It was particularly special to premiere a new piece for bass trombone and accordion with Elena Fainshtein, written in honor of my Opa (grandfather) who got me into music! I am also grateful for the opportunity to judge the George Roberts Bass Trombone Competition. I was blown away with the level of playing from all the contestants! Thank you to all the trombonists for making it an inspirational event!”

Elena exclaimed, “We did it! I felt awesome after performing at the International Trombone Festival in Salt Lake City! Thank you University of Utah for hosting such an amazing event. It was quite an interesting feeling being the only accordionist performer among thousands of trombone players! Thank you, Lucas Kaspar, for that wonderful opportunity to play with you.”

Dr. Michael Johnson, composer of “Opa’s Yodel” is currently the Director of Bands at Lone Star College in Kingwood, TX. He conducts the Kingwood Winds, Kingwood Jazz Ensemble, Kingwood Jazz Combo, and coaches student chamber ensembles. Previously, Dr. Johnson was an adjunct faculty at the Alabama School of Fine Arts and Shelton State Community College. As a private instructor, his students have had numerous accomplishments in all-state band, all-state orchestra, and various regional honor bands and music festivals. Dr. Johnson is also a sought-after brass instructor, working with band programs all over Alabama and several areas in Austin and San Marcos during his master's degree in Texas.

As a performer, Dr. Johnson was recently a member of the Alabama Winds, an all-adult professional wind ensemble based in Birmingham, AL. A member from 2017-2023, Michael performed with the Alabama Winds at the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic, the Alabama Music Educators Association, the Western International Band Clinic, and various state honor band festivals in Alabama and Tennessee. An avid jazz musician, Michael was the lead trombone player with the Tuscaloosa Big Band. He has performed with several jazz bands across Alabama and Texas such as the Republic of Texas Big Band, Gabriel Santiago Orchestra, NOW Jazz Orchestra, and several others. Michael was a guest soloist with the Austin Civic Orchestra in 2018 and has performed with orchestras such as the Laredo Philharmonic, Tuscaloosa Symphony, and Meridian Symphony Orchestra and more.

As a composer, Dr. Johnson has a broad portfolio of works for brass and solos with fixed media. He has had pieces performed at Midwest and AMEA, as well as several premieres by collegiate trombone choirs. Michael has also composed music for a few commercial projects including special music for Texas State University's submission to the 2016 Global News Relay and marketing videos for Shelton State’s fine arts program. Some of his original compositions and arrangements can be heard on albums by Jonathan Whitaker (University of Alabama), Peter Ellefson (Indiana University), and Martin McCain (Texas State University). Dr. Johnson holds degrees from the University of Alabama (DMA, BM) and Texas State University (MM). His primary instructors include Jonathan Whitaker, Martin McCain, Peter Ellefson, and Billy Bargetzi.

Accordionist Elena Fainshtein is a well known and respected teacher, musician and an inspiration to all. The accordion is an integral and highly important part of Elena Fainshtein’s life. She encompasses all aspects of the accordion and musical world: Performer, Teacher, Arranger, Mentor, valued member of accordion organizations such as ATG and more. She helps her students actualize their musical potential in a meaningful, kind and practical way. Elena is a warm, enthusiastic and approachable person. Many of her students have participated in and won in the Big Squeeze Accordion Competition over the years. Elena greatly inspires her students and provides them with opportunities to showcase their talents and accomplishments.

Photo: Elena and students left to right: Rochelle Thompson from Texas, Isaiah Kaspar with his dad Lucas Kaspar from Oklahoma, Sonya Bandouil from NY, Iosif Tkachenko from Massachusetts, Elijah Clements from Texas

For further information:

Gary Dahl eSheet music, sent by email, secure bank server system

2023 Cotati Festival on August 19 & 20

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Are you ready for the 2023 Cotati Accordion Festiva? It will be at La Plaza Park, La Plaza, Cotati, CA 94931, on August 19 & 20, 2023. Make sure to attend the Cotati Accordion Festival Zydeco Dance Party. Starting at noon on Saturday, August 19th, the Zydeco Dance Party opens up at Spanky’s, adjacent to the park and our festival. There is not only dancing inside the club, but there is a lot of dancing space outside on the wide sidewalk adjacent to the club which was full of dancers last year. On top of that, we get to start things off with the incomparable Mark St.Mary.

Mark St.Mary has been awarded the “Best Zydeco Band” by the Bay Area Blues Society and the “Delta King” never fails to bring the best in traditional Louisiana zydeco music. Mark closes out his set at 5:00 only to be followed by more dancing in the zydeco tent which starts up at 5:15 on Saturday with Iko Ya Ya and their “swamp rock and roll”. Iko Ya Ya will be mixing a lot of genres in with their zydeco and it all ends up in a stew that has everyone dancing for another couple of hours.

On Sunday the Zydeco Dance Party starts anew with the California Blue Runners at Spankys. Andrew Carriere, Haywood Douresseau, Tom Stewart, Andre Nigoghossian and David Hymowitz bring their deep Louisaniana experience to Cotati for all of us to enjoy. Once again, the party continues at 5:15 in the tent with long-time local favorites The Wild Catahoulas creating the ultimate in an upbeat vibe and the perfect dancing environment.

Partial List of Cotati Festival Performers:
Cory Pesaturo
Tracey Collins (New Zealand)
Jenny Conlee(The Decemberists)
Elena Stenkina(Russia/New Jersey)
Those Darn Accordions
Faleado Forro(Jamie Maschler)
Carlos Mehia Godoy(Nicaragua/Cal.)
Jet Black Pearl
Mad Maggies
Erica Mancini(New York City)
Junk Parlor
Mariposa Del Alma
Courtney Von Drehle
Hernandez Hideaway
Mike Danner
Sourdough Slim
Paper Bellows(Oregon)
Wind Weavers
Five Cent Coffee
Zla Vila
Amber Lee Baker
Barn Swallows
Juniper Djinn
Future Stars
The Steve Balich Band
Sheri Mignano
Mark St Mary
California Blue Runners
Iko Ya Ya
The Wild Catahoulas The Grand Finale…..and more to be announced.

The Cotati Accordion Festival is a non-profit organization established in 1991 to promote the love of the accordion and to support local youth service organizations. To date, they have contributed in over $500,000 to the youth of the community.

Cotati poster artwork & design by Katie Kincade Designs

For further information:

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Accordion Pops Orchestra August Performances

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News

APOAPOThe Accordion Pops Orchestra conducted by Al Terzo is one of the largest accordion orchestra in the United States performing primarily in New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania. Their next concert takes place on Sunday, August 13, 2023 at 3:30 PM at the Fellowship Cltural Arts Center of Basking Ridge located at Fellowship Village, 8000 Fellowship Road in Basking Ridge, NJ. The APO performed in July at the AAA 85th Anniversary Festival. Their entire performance is available on the AAA website.(July 14, 2023)

The APO will perform at the Bright View Senior Living on Saturday, August 26, 2023 at 2:PM, 301 East Conestoga Road, Wayne, Pennsylvania. The orchestra includes the following members: Renee Chase, Joanna Darrow, Phyllis Edamatsu, Joyce Gandenberger, Michael Koziupa, Paul Koslowski, Annette Marinelli, Diane Squillace, Kalman Zilberman, Diane Ashenfalder, Anne Marie Egan, Ray Haines, Denise Koncelik, John Modrowsky, Mike Parziale, Nadine Roth, Walter Syzonenko, Grace Wu, Dante Giammarco, Kelly Grove, Kathy Haywood, Sandra Perez. Teresa Rehberg, Tatiana Slowik, Jingbo Wang, Juliette Amerman, Don Nowicki, Barbara Snyderman, Denise Szabo, Mary Thomas, Jennifer Bednar, Connie Compito, Patti Selikoff, Joanne Squillace, Erika Brito, Josephine Sarica, John Andrews Keyboard/Percussion: Anna Rene Jeremiah; Midi Accordion/Webmaster/Repairs/Video: Robert Patterson; Video: Dean Ratzin

The orchestra's roots can be traced to 1970 when it was organized by the Accordion Teachers Association of New Jersey. Its first conductor was Dr. Jacob Neupauer of Philadelphia. In 1980 the orchestra was reorganized under well-known accordionist and composer Eugene Ettore. In 1985 the orchestra was again reorganized under Daniel Desiderio and the name was formally changed to the Accordion Pops Orchestra. The membership was expanded beyond the original members from New Jersey to include performers from Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Delaware, Maryland, and Rhode Island. Maestro Desiderio retired in 2011 and turned the reins over to the current conductor, Al Terzo.

The orchestra consists entirely of accordions plus percussion instruments. The accordions are divided into five main sections (first through fifth accordion), each playing different parts. In addition, there is a bass accordion with special deep reeds and a midi accordion with electronic capabilities to simulate hundreds of other instruments.

The roughly 30 members include professionals, teachers, and amateur musicians. The orchestra performs a repertoire taken from a wide range of music categories, including Broadway, popular music, movie themes, and light classical compositions. The orchestra performs in concert halls, festivals, playhouses, clubs, churches, and retirement homes.

To inquire about performances or membership, e-mail:

James O'Brien eSheet music, emailed to you, secure bank server

Reports for Concerts, Masterclasses, Competitions, Festivals, etc.

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

The Seminars, A New Film and a New Album

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Video 1:

Video 2:

Video 3:
Bill SchimmelThe 2023 Accordion Seminars, curated and hosted by Dr. William Schimmel, took place on July 28, 29 and 30, 2023 virtual. It was sponsored by The Accordion Global Association. It was the 29th year. It was a great success and all three days are available for viewing on Youtube and here.

Video #1 - Fri, Jul 28, 3:PM:
Video #2 - Sat, Jul 29, 3:PM:
Video #3 - Sun Jul 30, 3:PM:

These amazing seminars are available free online but I hope you will be generous and send William Schimmel a donation for these very special seminars to show your appreciation. You can make a donation on his website.
You can also to subscribe his newsletter. Donation info: Paypal - Accordionbill@gmail. com

Dr Schimmel also contributed some music for a new film, “Halmot’s Pot”, written and directed by A, Lauren Lee which has been recently filmed (recently shown at Quad Cinema in New York) in prestigious Film Festivals such as The Asian American Film Festival and the Palm Springs Film Festival - the latter being a Festival that has become a showcase for Oscar contenders.

Dr. Schimmel has a new recording in collaboration with experimental music legend, Elliott Sharp. The title is "Interpolations" with Dr. Schimmel on 12 Bass Hohner Accordion and Elliott Sharp on Bass Clarinet and various guitars and banjo. The album can be purchased for
Download on Bandcamp: William Schimmel Elliott Sharp Interpolations

For further information:

Titano Accordion Company

Steve Albini’s August Performances

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
steve Meisner
Steve Albini is a very versatile and entertaining accordionist. He can always put a smile on your face when you hear him perform. Most recently, he had the opportunity to play for Italian Night at the San Francisco Giants Game on July 25, 2023. I always enjoy speaking with him and I had to ask, “How did you get this amazing gig?”

Steve explains, “Ron Borelli actually has done it in the past and put this trio together for this event. We really enjoyed playing together. Both Ron’s (Ron Borelli and Ron Sfarzo) are world class musicians. Besides being incredible accordionists, they are also both fantastic pianists. Both are first call musicians here in the San Francisco Bay Area.

As for my performances, I play every Thursday and Friday evenings 5:30 until 8:PM at San Rafael Joe’s in San Rafael, CA. Next week I will be playing a number of dates with well known Sicilian singer Michela Musolino during her West Coast tour.”

August 2023 performances include:
Friday 8/4 at Club Ashkenaz in Berkeley, CA
Saturday 8/5 at the Italian American Heritage Foundation’s Family Festa in San Jose, CA whith is a very large Italian festival.
Sunday 8/6 concert at Orsi Family Vineyards in Healdsburg, CA
Saturday, 8/19 6:PM to 9:PM EDT Accordion Night at Cibo Rustica

The Italian phrase "passione e fuoco" truly describes the music of singer and musician ‪Steve Albini. ‬ His live performances span Italian, world, jazz and Latin American genres. He has performed throughout the U.S. and Europe. As a studio musician, Steve is often called by producers and artists to add his touch to their projects. Among his most current projects is the musical group IL SOLE with world renown accordionist Tatiana Semichastnaya. Steve has performed for many famous personalities and well known politicians. Since 2010, Steve has been an integral part of the Roland US piano and V-Accordion team.

For further information:

Larry Malmberg eSheet music, sent by email, secure bank server

Zydeco Accordionist Andre Thierry Performs in Richmond, CA

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Video: A walk through Richmond, CA with Andre Thierry, Grammy nominated Zydeco and Soul artist. Andre talks about his family migration from Louisiana to the Bay Area, and how Zydeco shaped his life in California.

This short documentary was produced for the Roots of Fire project, an exploration of modern Cajun and Creole music and the artists shaping those genres.

Experience Music in the Park with accordionist Andre Thierry on Wednesday, August 02, 2023 , 6:00pm-8:PM at Stafford Park, King St. and Hopkins Ave
Redwood City, CA. Andre Thierry is a phenomenal talent who has been capturing the attention of music lovers all over the world. This award-winning musician and his band effortlessly deliver energetic performances, blending his own electrifying sounds with stirring dance beats. Click here for more Music in the Park.

Although born and raised in Richmond, California, Andre's French-Kreole heritage is deeply rooted in Louisiana. He embarked on a path with specific knowledge and extraordinary talents at a very young age. True to his culture and love of music, he has crafted a career well beyond his years as an artist. Excerpts from his website:
Andre grew up experiencing the French Kreole (La-La) dances his grandparents held at their church parish, St. Mark's Catholic Church. The best Zydeco musicians Louisiana had to offer traveled to California to play at these dances. The exposure allowed him to develop his love for traditional French Kreole music. Andre regularly played with visiting bands, such as the late John Delafose and many local Zydeco and Cajun bands, including the late Danny Poullard (California Cajun Orchestra). By age twelve, Andre formed his band, "Zydeco Magic." Andre is self-taught and constantly increases his repertoire.
In his 30's, he had already been deemed a legend. There is widespread agreement that he is an exceptional, multi-dimensional musician. Michael Tisserand, author of The Kingdom of Zydeco, considered the definitive book on the history of Zydeco music, wrote,"In America, great migrations produce great music. Just as Delta musicians took Highway 61 to Chicago and electrified their blues, so did the Kreoles and Cajuns migrate to California and establish vital dance communities. Now the California scenes rival anything back home in Louisiana, and that's due to players like Andre Thierry, a standard-bearer for the new generation. Thierry is among the best of both the West Coast and the Gulf Coast, and he combines youthful vigor with a mature appreciation for his inherited tradition."
Andre's style isn't conventional; he and his accordions provide a signature sound by creating magnetic, sonic landscapes. The rhythmic songs drive an atmospheric blend, giving his band a powerful edge, naturally building a dedicated following through performing, touring, and a string of album recordings like "It's About Time," "A Whole Lotta Somthin" and "Are You Ready To Learn".  
The Accordion defies all national and continental borders. Andre Thierry performed in the Akkordeonale, International Festival (Program 2016). Representing the USA — Impelling Blues with Kreole Roots- Andre celebrated with audiences touring Germany, delivering awe-inspiring performances, coming together with musicians in a vivid interchange. Though the musicians came from different cultural backgrounds and musical styles, they shared the language of music, creating a thrilling coexistence on stage.

Forthcoming about his journey, Andre Thierry's music creations are intoxicating and timeless. Enjoy the unfolding of this charismatic artist as he vibrates Accordion Soul, raising the frequency with stimulating beats, attracting any music lover to the dance floor.

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

Remembering Lee Paulson

by Joan Grauman, AAA Historian
Lee and Ron
PaulsonIt is with a very heavy heart that I write about the passing of Lenore Engstrom (Lee) Paulson, beloved and very active member of the Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society (WMAS). Lee was born in Chicago, IL on October 20, 1937, and began studying the accordion at the age of 10 with Herb Granquist who directed an accordion band for his young students in the Chicago area.

It was in this band, in 1952, where Lee met her future husband, Ron Paulson.
Lee and Ron married in 1959. Ron’s career in the Navy took the family to California, Japan, Florida and Washington, DC. As with many accordionists, Lee and Ron’s instruments went into storage.

Thankfully, thirty years later, Lee picked up the accordion again, was a fine player, and never stopped playing! She was always the first one to say, “I’ll do it!” when we needed a few folks for a gig, when I created the Potomac Accordion Ensemble, when WMAS put together our Holiday Orchestras, when we needed decorations, publicity, help with our club banner, parade floats, and the list goes on.

Lee’s husband Ron was our beloved “Roadie”. In Lee’s words, Ron “schlepped thousands of pounds of accordions for the Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society,” through the years, and this was so true!! Both Lee and Ron were kind, talented, generously unselfish, loving, energetic folks, and they were truly in love. Ron passed away in 2021. They were married 62 years.

To all of us in WMAS, Lee and Ron were “Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus”. Their beautiful rosy cheeks, warm blue eyes, and endless smiles brought joy to all of us and to all of our many celebrations together through the years. Co-founder and former President of WMAS, Karen Malan-Uribe describes Lee for all of us. “She was a wonderful friend. Always happy, joyful and supportive. I feel so honored to have called her my friend and am grateful for the time we spent together.”

Lee leaves behind her son David Paulson and his wife Peggy, her daughter Lauren Mayer and her husband Bill, four grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and many, many friends. I spoke with Lee only a few days before she died. She was happy, feeling well, and we shared stories and laughed as we always did. She passed suddenly on the morning of July 19. Lee, you sure will be missed!

Photo down: Lee and Ron’s accordion band, 1958.  
Lee: 2nd from right, front row; Ron: far right, back row.

Photo right: The Potomac Accordion Ensemble, 2015
Top, L to R:
Peter DiGiovanni, Louis Silvia, Pat Saylor, Karen Malan-Uribe, Meryl Benenati
Seated L to R:  Lee Paulson, Joan Grauman Morse, JoAnn Pankow
Front:  Luis Uribe (missing from photo: Mara Cherkasky).

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

Passing of Steve Meisner, Well Known Polka Accordionist

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Steve Meisner
Video: Video: Steve Meisner Band – Polka Medley (Illinois Polka Festival 2/4/23) Steve Meisner (accordion), Dave Austin (2nd accordion), Jerry Bieniek (banjo), Chris Doszak (drums) and Don Hunjadi (saxophone)

Steve Meisner, one of Wisconsin's best-known polka musicians, passed away on June 1, 2023 at age 62 shortly after being diagnosed with cancer. As part of the band that carried his name, Meisner, a lifelong Whitewater resident, entertained audiences at festivals across the state with his accordion and polka tunes. He worked to keep the genre current by infusing polka classics with his own, updated sound, which he called "Meisner style." Meisner is survived by his wife, Barb, his three children, Whitney, Lindsey and Austin, his six grandchildren and other relatives. 

Meisner picked up an accordion at age 5 and never stopped playing, said his longtime friend and bandmate, Don Hunjadi of Wind Lake. Inspired by his father, Verne Meisner, who was a famous polka band leader in his own right, Meisner dedicated his life to polka music, never considering another career.

"He worked one or two days for a different employer and came home and said, 'I'm never doing that again,'" Hunjadi said. Meisner played events like Polish Fest, Wisconsin State Fair and dozens of other county fairs, church festivals and parades. His band also regularly performed at several local German beer halls, beer gardens and bars. At his career's peak, Meisner had as many as 250 engagements booked in a year, Hunjadi said. Sometimes, venue organizers would ask Meisner's band to wear lederhosen. He'd refuse, saying he'd worked his whole life to combat the corny stereotypes of polka music.

Steve was a multi-talented musician, entertainer, composer, and arranger. He went on to earn a living in the music business since he was 16. Steve's family has a rich musical heritage and he is a second-generation full-time working musician. His father, the late Verne Meisner, had a successful music career for over 57 years. Steve’s brand of music was extremely versatile and appealing to a wide audience. He made a name for himself by taking the music he grew up with from his father and adding his own imagination and feeling. He brought his brand of traditional American polka into the 21st century with a fresh spark and swing while retaining the roots of this music.

From a young age, Steve was on-task to promote quality music that can be accepted by all ages. His main goal has been to persuade the general public's stereotypical view of polka music to bring a new awareness to the masses. "I believe that good music is simply good and I believe people know the difference. They may not always understand what the mechanics of it are, but they feel it. And that is where I've always placed my faith in people. They too feel that good music is simply good and it makes them feel good."

In Steve's 46-year musical career he performed with the nation’s top accordionists, polka icons and musicians including Myron Floren, Frank Yankovic, Joey Miskulin, and Verne Meisner. He amassed 22 LP/CD credits, 6 singles, and 7 video releases with full production credits. He has performed nationally coast to coast and internationally averaging as many as 250 performances annually including performances at the Lawrence Welk Theater in Branson MO, Stardust-Monte Carlo-Hacienda-Orleans & Plaza Casino's in Las Vegas. He has performed at the Library of Congress, the Kennedy Center, and the Smithsonian Folklife Festival on the National Mall in Washington DC. He and the Meisner brand of music has filtered into television broadcasts and motion pictures including TNN's Crook & Chase Show and the ABC Network 4th of July broadcast of "In Search of America, a 4th of July Celebration" hosted by the late Peter Jennings and folklorist Nick Spitzer. He and his music are featured in a full-length motion picture "Chump Change" released internationally by Miramax and he has been heard and seen on the film festival circuit in a short film called "The Pick Up Polka". He has an original composition in the independent full-length feature "Red Betsy." Writer/director/actor Steve Burrows from Hollywood CA call's Steve "the Mozart of Polka."

Steve received numerous awards and nominations including “Musician, Vocalist, and Band of the Year", "Favorite Polka Artist", “Lifetime Achievement award” by the Maryland Accordion Club, he resides as the 29th inductee to the Ironworld Polka Hall of Fame, and in 2005 an “Honor Roll” induction to the Wisconsin Polka Hall of Fame, he is the first of his generation to reside alongside his father as a "Lifetime Achiever" in the National Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame and most recently the International Polka Association (IPA) Hall of Fame. He and his father’s original compositions are included on many best selling polka recordings, Grammy-nominated recordings, and can be found in the archives of the Library of Congress, the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian Institute, and Wisconsin state libraries in both textbook and music categories. His recordings are used in preschool and kindergarten classes to teach the young and enjoyed by many generations bringing back memories of care-free days.

“Music is a large part of the soul of our society and I want to touch that part of people's souls...that part of their soul that makes a difference in their lives and show's them that music and dancing can excite, motivate and heal. There is nothing more gratifying than meeting a new fan who has just discovered my music for the first time. The expression on their face is like a child’s on Christmas morning...its priceless!"

While there can be no replacement for someone as talented as Steve Meisner, guest artists have been assembled to fulfill the final performances of the Steve Meisner Band. Core Meisner Band members have committed to working with the many events and venues to fulfill these already contracted engagements as requested. If you have booked the band you can contact Don Hunjadi for information and details.

Dates & Times are subject to change without notice.
August 2023:
Fri 4th Essen Haus, Essen Haus, 514 East Wilson Street, Madison, WI 7:00pm David Austin filling in
Sat 5th Essen Haus, Essen Haus, 514 East Wilson Street, Madison, WI 7:00pm David Austin filling in
Mon 7th Wisconsin State Fair Wisconsin State Fair, Budweiser Pavilion, West Allis, WI 11:00am John Wudtke filling in
Wed 9th Wisconsin State Fair,Cancelled, Wisconsin State Fair, Budweiser Pavilion, West Allis, WI 11:00am John Wudtke filling in Fri 11th Kegel's Inn Beer Garden, Kegel's Inn Beer Garden, 5901 W National Ave, West Allis, WI, 5:00PM Tom Brusky filling in
Mon 14th Downtown Wisconsin Dells Downtown Wisconsin Dells Concert, Elm Street Plaza, 350 Broadway, Wisconsin Dells, WI 7:00pm Ted Lange filling in
Tue 15th Downtown Wisconsin Dells Downtown Wisconsin Dells Concert, Elm Street Plaza, 350 Broadway, Wisconsin Dells, WI 7:PM Ted Lange filling in
Thur 17th First English Lutheran Church Steve Meisner Church Service, First English Lutheran Church, 401 W Main St., Whitewater, WI 3:PM
Sat 19th Schwabenhof Steve Meisner Memorial Celebration, Schwabenhof, N56W14750 Silver Spring Dr, Menomonee Falls, WI. Grounds open at 12:00pm John Wudtke and David Austin filling in
Fri 25th Old German Beer Hall, Old German Beer Hall, 1009 N. Old World 3rd Street, Milwaukee, WI 7:PM Keith Gennerman filling in
Sat 26th West Bend German Fest, West Bend German Fest, Regner Park, 800 N Main St., West Bend, WI 3:PM, John Wudtke filling in
Sat 26th Old German Beer Hall, Old German Beer Hall, 1009 N. Old World 3rd Street, Milwaukee, WI 8:30 PM,Keith Gennerman filling in
Sun 27th Croatian Cultural Club, Croatian Cultural Club, 1503 Clement St. Joliet, IL 5:PM Mike Schneider filling in
Tue 29th Downtown Wisconsin Dells, Downtown Wisconsin Dells Concert, Elm Street Plaza, 350 Broadway, Wisconsin Dells, WI 7:PM Mike Schneider filling in
Wed 30th Downtown Wisconsin Dells, Downtown Wisconsin Dells Concert, Elm Street Plaza, 350 Broadway, Wisconsin Dells, WI 7:00pm Mike Schneider filling in

September 2023:
Fri 1st Kegel's Inn Beer Garden, Kegel's Inn Beer Garden, 5901 W National Ave, West Allis, WI, 5:00PM Tom Brusky filling in
Sat 2nd Old German Beer Hall, Old German Beer Hall, 1009 N. Old World 3rd Street, Milwaukee, WI 8:30pm Mike Schneider filling in
Sun 3rd Oak Creek Lions Fest, Oak Creek Lions Fest, VFW Post 434, 9327 S Shepard Ave, Oak Creek, WI 2:PM John Wudtke filling in
Fri 8th Essen Haus, Essen Haus, 514 East Wilson Street, Madison, WI 7:00pm Bob Breuer filling in
Sat 9th Essen Haus, Essen Haus, 514 East Wilson Street, Madison, WI 7:00pm Bob Breuer filling in
Fri 15th Estabrook Beer Garden, Estabrook Park, 4400 N Estabrook Dr, Milwaukee, WI 4:00pm John Wudtke filling in
Sat 16th Lithuanian Club, Fall Oktoberfest Dance, Rockford Lithuanian Club, 716 Indiana Ave, Rockford, IL 6:PM John Wudtke filling in
Sun 17th Rio Depot Shelter, Music at the Rio Depot Shelter, 103 Lincoln Ave, Rio, WI 53960 3:00pm John Wudtke filling in
Thur 21st New Glarus Oktoberfest, New Glarus Oktoberfest, 1st Street, New Glarus, WI 6:00pm John Wudtke filling in
Sat 30th Muskego Lions Oktoberfest, Muskego Lions Oktoberfest, Memorial Veterans Park, W182S8200 Racine Ave, Muskego, WI 1:PM John Wudtke filling in.

Steve’s lively and positive personality which he successfully expressed through his music will be missed by all.

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Summer Accordion by Maria & Sergei Teleshev

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Maria & Sergei Teleshev Duo TWO ACCORDIONS "Agua De Beber"

Sergio shares,”Our new music video!!! Bossa Nova Jazz Standard "Agua De Beber" (Water To Drink) by Antonio Carlos Jobim was presented by Brazilian singer Astrud Gilberto in 1965. Here is our version of this piece!”

Classically trained at the Academy of Music in Voronezh, Russia, Sergei Teleshev has won numerous regional and international accordion competitions. He collaborates with many internationally recognized artists, ensembles, and orchestras, composing and arranging music and participating in recording projects of different genres. Sergei has sat as a jury member at international accordion competitions from the USA and Canada to the Ukraine.

Sergei is available for online accordion lessons, master classes, and educational school programs for all ages.

Maria Telesheva was six years old when she started to play the accordion under the tutelage of her father. Within two months after she started playing, Maria won her first international competition and she hasn’t stopped since, taking prizes in competitions in the United States, Canada, Australia, Italy, and Belarus. Not only is Maria an exceptionally talented duet and solo accordion performer, she is also a talented singer, singing in both Russian and English.

Duo “TWO ACCORDIONS” is a unique duo. For a preview of the artistry of this father/daughter team, please visit their YouTube playlist.

For further information:

Titano Accordion Company

Stowe Tango Music Festival August 18 - 20 in Vermont

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
HectorStowe logoVideo: "Night of Tango" Promo - 2022 Stowe Tango Music Festival at Spruce Peak

The Stowe Tango Music Festival will take place in Stowe, Vermont, USA from August 18th to 20th, 2023. The Stowe Tango Music Festival is the United States' premier tango music festival, noted both for its unique series of performances and its high level of musical training. Founded by bandoneonist Hector Del Curto and cellist Jisoo Ok, the highlight of the festival is the Stowe Tango Music Festival Orchestra – a truly unique tango orchestra comprised of an extraordinary group of selected students from all over the globe and world-class artists including guest tango legends from Argentina. The festival also features numerous events for dancers and the world's only annual bandoneon competition – Che Bandoneon International Competition.

The 2023 Che Bandoneon International Competition is open to bandoneon players of all nationalities and at least 18 years of age by August 1st, 2022. The preliminary round will be held online. The Finals of the Competition will be held in Stowe, Vermont USA from August 8th to 20th as a part of the 2023 Stowe Tango Music Festival. Artistic Director & Founder: Hector Del Curto.

Héctor del Curto is an Argentine tango bandoneon player. Born in Buenos Aires, he began to study tango music at a young age, winning the Best Bandoneon under 25 when only 17 years old. Following that honor, he played with the late tango giants Ástor Piazzolla and Osvaldo Pugliese among many others. During this time, he played at the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall. In 2018 he won the Grammy Award for Best Latin Jazz Album for the album Jazz Tango as a member of the Pablo Ziegler Trio.

Dedicated to the education, outreach, and the preservation of tango, Mr. Del Curto founded the Stowe Tango Music Festival, the premier tango music festival in the United States and produced its awarding-winning album: Live at the 2016 Stowe Tango Music Festival. 

The Stowe Tango Music Festival's mission is to integrate and expand Stowe and surrounding communities by making Tango accessible to everyone through the music, the dance, the art, the educational programs and community events. It offers a wide range of opportunities for aficionados and newcomers to connect with Tango Music in new and innovative ways.

The Stowe Tango Music Festival is sponsored by The Argentine Tango Society.

2023 Stowe Tango Music Festival Schedule:
March 31st: Application Deadline
April 30th: Video Submission Deadline
May 7th: Announcement of the Finalists
August 8th: Finalists arrive to Stowe
August 18th: Competition Finals
August 19th: Award Ceremony
August 21st: Departure from Stowe

For more information or assistance with your online application, please email:

As part of the event, a Bandoneon/Piano Intensive Workshop with Hector Del Curto & Victor Lavallen, will be held from August 8th to 13th and a Tango Academy from August 14th to 20th, 2023.

Finals of the Che Bandoneon International Competition will be held on August 18th with an award ceremony on the 19th.

For festival information:

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

Accordions Usher in SF Giants at Italian Heritage Night

by Pamela Tom
Video: San Francisco Giants Italian Heritage Night Pregame Show 7/25/23

A trio of some of San Francisco Bay Area’s premier performing musicians (Steve Albini, Ron Borelli and Ron Sfarzo) was the featured pre-game entertainment at the San Francisco Giants game at Oracle Park during Italian Heritage Night on July 25, 2023.

The accordionists initially performed for 30 minutes in the Willie Mays gate entrance with familiar Italian tunes: “Quando, Quando, Quando,” “Al Di La,” “La Campagnola,” “Chitarra Romana,“ “Guaglione” and “Tarantella.” On the field, the Balliamo! Dancers from Sacramento danced with their ribboned tambourines and folk costumes to the mandolin sounds of “Funiculi Funicula.”

Then the trio performed and was projected on the “giant” screen so that 40,000+ fans could see and hear the accordionists performing “Marina” on their assorted ROLAND accordions with Steve Albini’s spirited voice resonating throughout the arena. Soprano Maria Fassio Pignati beautifully sang “The Star-Spangled Banner” Fast forward to the end of the game and hooray!...Giants bested the Oakland A’s with a score of 2 to 1!

It was a fantastic opportunity for Steve Albini, Ron Borelli and Ron Sfarzo to showcase their talent and be accordion ambassadors with San Francisco’s official instrument!

Photo: Ron Borelli, Maria Fassio Pignati, Steve Albini and Ron Sfarzo
Photo Credit: San Francisco Giants


Future events

Accordions Around the World at Bryant Park, NYC

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Bryant park logo
Bryant park“Accordions Around the World” takes place at Bryant Park, NYC on August 25, 2023 at 7:PM. This year's festival curated by Ariana Hellerman features 3 global bands,women-led projects: Diana Burco's Colombian vallenato, Finland’s Suistamon Sähkö, and an all-female Ragini Ensemble in partnership with Brooklyn Raga Massive.

From NYC Parks official website: A rising star of the explosive and multidimensional Colombian music scene, Diana Burco is a singer, songwriter, and accordion player. Burco has played and investigated Colombia’s traditional music since she was a child. She has traveled throughout Colombia searching out the country’s varied forms and expressions, and has studied and collaborated with the masters that interpret them. This deep cultural fluency and her own wide-ranging contemporary explorations mark Burco as a 21st century troubadour charting an original path rooted in her country’s rich heritage.

Diana Burco has participated in programs and platforms around the world including One Beat Colombia, Ethno World and MAPAS (Artes Performativas del Atlantico Sur). Her debut U.S. tour in March 2022 featured shows in Albuquerque and Santa Fe NM, Burlington VT, Great Barrington MA, Washington DC, West Palm Beach FL, New York City, and Savannah GA.

The Arctic Etnotekno Act Suistamon Sähkö from Finland gains momentum gig by gig and cheerfully moves through ethno techno and smoke shack sounds to the world of hip hop like the genre hybrid they are. The group favors a boisterous rave atmosphere, synthesizer buzz, rap declarations and a Soviet-made accordion and makes the audience jiggle and the cottage floor shake. The Suistamon Sähkö rhythm universe is a rambunctious mix of primitive primordial force and experimental dance music.

In addition to Finnish stages, the Suistamon Sähkö spark has also flown to international arenas in e.g. Germany, France and Russia. During their short existence, the group has published three albums and a dozen music videos which have attracted attention. Suistamon Sähkö was selected as the opening act of the notable World Music Expo Womex Tampere 2019 and as the showcase act of the Folk Alliance International New Orleans, USA, in early 2020. In 2022 the band performed as part of globalFest meets TinyDesk.

Exploring a merging of diasporic songs, matrilineal folk songs and beat-driven celebratory chutney anthems, the Ragini Ensemble - in partnership with Brooklyn Raga Massive - gathers songs born out of the South Asian diaspora spread wide, fragmented and reforged in Reunion Island, Guyana and Trinidad. Speaking, or rather singing into the aesthetic body of work defined by the "Coolitude" movement, this set is inspired by the legacy of post-indentureship collective memory, nostalgia and reclamation of joy in the gathering to sing, itself a cultural practice known as "baithak gana" - an intimate act of sitting(or dancing) together in song. Tabla player/Electronic artist, Roshni Samlal, violinist/looper Natie, harmonium player/singer Pratima Doobay and dholak player/singer Kajol Ji re-envision the sounds of their homeland and history.

Bryant Park Picnic Performances presented by Bank of America showcases live and in-person music, dance, and theater events produced in partnership with a diverse and storied lineup of New York City’s performing arts institutions. All performances are free to the public and designed to be enjoyed casually – no tickets required—with ample seating available and free picnic blankets to borrow. 

Over the past few years, Picnic Performances has grown into one of New York City’s foremost outdoor celebrations of music, theater, and dance. Last summer more than 75,000 people attended the series, and nearly half a million watched the free performance livestreams.

For further information:

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

AAA Sunday Afternoon Accordion Celebration! on September 10

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
AAA Event
Come to the AAA’s Sunday Afternoon Accordion Celebration! on Sunday, September 10, 2023 - 12:00 noon at:
Famee Furlane Club
2008 127th Street
College Point, NY 11356.
Details at: Breaking News

Join us on September 10, 2023 at 12 noon for an AAA Sunday Afternoon Accordion Celebration featuring:
Alex Chudolij, Mario Tacca, Mary Mancini, Frank Toscano, and Dominic Karcic

The event ticket includes buffet dinner, 2 bottles of wine per table, entertainment, & dancing.
The price is $85/person You can purchase tickets online. Full information at:

The American Accordionists’ Association (AAA) is a 501(c)(3) corporation. All donations are tax deductible to the extent of the law.

Please RSVP by September 4, 2023.
For event details or to become an AAA member, please visit for further information about the 85th Anniversary Festival and all the many fascinating accordion activities that the AAA is sponsoring.

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

2024 Sail Away Polka Cruise

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Sail Away Polka Cruise
Video: Alaskan Cruise Sail Away Polka Party - leaving Vancouver - Alaska

The 2024 Sail Away Polka Cruise will be held from January 13th to 20th 2024 on the “Sky Princess” from Ft. Lauderdale to The Eastern Caribbean including:

Princess Cays, Bahamas
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Grand Turk, Turks And Caicos
Amber Cove, Dominican Republic

Musical entertainment will be provided by a variety of accordionists hosted by: Jimmy Sturr & Mollie B featuring:
Jimmy Sturr & His Orchestra
Mollie B, Ted Lange & Squeezebox
Girl Named Tom of The Voice
Steve Meisner Band
Jim Busta
Barefoot Becky & The Ivanhoe Dutchman
Dancing Instructing with Matt & Elaine
Keith Stras

Prices Starting at $1049 per person, double occupancy + taxes & fees

All travel arrangements must be booked through:
United Polka Artists / Jimmy Sturr Trave
62 North Main Street, Suite 114,
Florida, NY 10921

Deposit of $450 per person due at time of reservation Credit Card Payments / Checks Payable to United Polka Artists
Deposit fully refundable until October 11, 2023

For details email:
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