Future Accordionists of America

Forget the Olympics or the election — it’s the humble accordion that’s grabbing headlines in major newspapers from coast to coast this week. Last weekend’s American Accordionists’ Association festival gave both the New York Times and Los Angeles Times an excuse to hop on the “accordion revival” bandwagon. Best of all, both papers focused on the festival’s young attendees — the next generation of accordionists.

In “A Celebration of the Squeezebox”, the New York Times talks to 15-year-old John Moceo and 18-year-old Anthony Falco, who notes “it’s up to our generation to bring in rock songs.” Meanwhile, New York accordionist Benjamin Ickies nicely sums up the accordion’s ability to bridge the gap between old and young:

“The accordion’s in our cultural past, so it sounds somewhat familiar… But for 30 years it’s also been a complete outsider, so it also sounds new and fresh. No other instrument has that dichotomy.”

Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Times article, “Accordions are Not Just a Punch Line Anymore”, covers the well-worn story of the accordion’s rise and fall in American popular culture, but looks with optimism at its future — talking to 22-year-old Cory Pesaturo and John Moceo. Don’t miss the excellent video of several teenage accordionists playing and talking about their favorite instrument.

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