Quick Links: Super Bowl Edition

  • Pittsburgh Steelers Polka
    I don’t really have a rooting interest in Sunday’s game, but Happy Louie’s rendition of the “Pennsylvania Polka” with Steelers-themed lyrics makes me want to break out my Terrible Towel.
  • Arizona Accordion Club
    Just so Cardinals fans don’t feel slighted… the Arizona Accordion Club has one of the best accordion club websites we’ve seen and even offers scholarships for young accordionists.
  • 31st Annual Concertina Bowl
    Every year in Blaine, MN, on the Saturday before the Super Bowl, dozens of chemnitzer concertina players gather for 12 hours of nonstop concertina music. This year’s featured band is Gilly Maus and the Country Polkateers.

Squeeze Play at Red Sox Parade

Jonathan Papelbon dances with Dropkick Murphys

Some of you already know that Anna and I are huge Red Sox fans; we even flew out to Boston for the World Series parade when the Sox won in 2004. We didn’t make the trip this year, but I almost wish we had after seeing these photos of Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon dancing a jig with Boston’s own accordion-toting Dropkick Murphys during today’s celebration. The Dropkick Murphys have become the unofficial house band of the Red Sox lately, re-recording the 100-year-old bleacher anthem “Tessie” in 2004 and performing on the field before Game 7 of the ALCS two weeks ago.

More Chicago Bears Polkas

Vlasta’s not the only one writing polkas for the Super Bowl-bound Chicago Bears. Eddie Blazonczyk’s Versatones have a new single that could be the perfect soundtrack for your Super Bowl party. The featured songs are “Chicago Cares About The Bears” and “Bear Down Chicago Bears.” You can listen to sound clips at the Bel-Aire Records site.

Vlasta’s Chicago Bears Polka

If the Chicago Bears needed any more motivation for their playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks this weekend, they’ve got it now. Vlasta, the (self-proclaimed?) “International Queen of Polka” has resurrected the polka she wrote for the Bears’ 1985 Super Bowl run and hopes it will inspire this year’s team to bring home another championship.

If the Bears go all the way, will Vlasta’s polka become the new “Super Bowl Shuffle”?

Dick Contino and the Bulldog Polka

Anna and I spent our holiday weekend in Fresno — catching up with family, eating pumpkin pie, and even doing some antique shopping on Christmas Eve. While we’re still kicking ourselves for passing up the accordion-shaped bar set (with shot glasses!), we did bring home this novelty record featuring Fresno accordion legend Dick Contino and comedian Bobby Volare.

Recorded in 1983 as a tribute to the Fresno State men’s basketball team — which won the NIT that year and brought Fresno some rare positive press — the single features two songs: “Bulldog Polka” (a cheesy reworking of “Beer Barrel Polka”) and “New York, New York” (I’m surprised Sinatra didn’t have Volare “whacked” for this rendition). Contino’s playing is solid, but given the material, neither tune will be appearing on his greatest hits record.

If you’re a fan of bad novelty records, go ahead and listen to “Bulldog Polka.” Otherwise, steer clear of the link below. You’ve been warned.

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eBay Find: Win Twins Polka

The MLB playoffs start today and, since our beloved Red Sox will be watching from home this year, I’ve decided to pull for the Minnesota Twins this postseason. The choice was obvious after an eBay search uncovered this vinyl record of the “Win Twins Polka”, written by accordionist Marv Masterman. Masterman, who was inducted into the Ironworld Polka Hall of Fame in 2005, recorded the song during the Twins’ World Series run in 1987 (the salad days of Puckett and Viola) and considered it his greatest achievement in music. If anyone has a digital recording of this tune, let us know and we’ll listen to it while waving our Homer Hankies.