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Squeeze Box - Accordion Music in Pop & Rock

June is national accordion awareness month. So before the month’s end, following my past reviews singling out instruments from harmonica, flute, base, piano, keyboard, I thought I’d give accordion it’s due. The accordion, also called the “concertina,” is primarily used to accompany traditional polka music but has been featured in many classical and modern musical works, from jazz and zydeco to folk, gospel, blues, and even rock and pop.

Some top songs featuring accordion include several songs by John Mellencamp, Billy Joel, Bruce Hornsby, Paul Simon, Bob Dylan, Counting Crows, Jethro Tull, Mark Knopfler, Los Lobos, and the Beach Boys, as well as individual songs by artists including Bruce Springsteen, the Talking Heads, Elton John, Styx, Aerosmith, R.E.M., The Band, The The, Roger Waters, even Paul McCartney. An interesting fact given The Band and The The appear in this playlist: The The chose their name to try to come up with what they felt was a more ridiculous, less creative, less descriptive name than The Band, choosing The The 🤣.

The playlist starts with two memorable Disney movie songs featuring accordion – “Be Our Guest” from Beauty & The Beast and “Bella Note” from Lady & The Tramp.  Other standout songs include “Cherry Bomb,” “This Is The Day,” “Piano Man,” “Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word,” “Road To Nowhere,” and “Kokomo” among others.

 

The playlist progresses to a little foray into international accordion songs of note, including Mexican, Zydeco, Russian, and then in tribute to my heritage, Italian and Polish. And what would an an accordion playlist be without the inclusion of Weird Al Yankovic. Interestingly, Frankie Yankovic, Slovenian accordion great, widely known for his hit “Beer Barrel Polka,” is not related to Weird Al, though they share a surname and common cultural heritage. His parents reportedly enrolled a young Weird Al in accordion lessons rather than guitar so there would be at least one other accordion playing Yankovic 🤪.

 

I hope that this music and my blog truly serve as a “revival: a new presentation of something old,” a springboard to return to the music of your youth, or perhaps to find artists you want to discover anew.  Rediscover the passion of music in your life. Live in the moment. Enjoy the moment. Love the moment. Listen to the MUSIC!

 

https://listentothemusicblog.com/squeeze-box-pop-rock-songs-featuring-accordion/

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Silver Conversationalist

Only The Lonely- The Chris Isaak cover of the Orbison classic. Chris did an unplugged acoustic cover of this with an accordion rhythm back up. Great rendition.

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Regular Social Butterfly

One song I didn't see mentioned is How Can I Be Sure" by the Young Rascals. Its standout riff that gives it such a different and cool Bohemian vibe is played on accordion.

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Conversationalist

You're right about the song - great accordion riff. It was already on the list 🙂 

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Regular Social Butterfly

Love this topic; and wonder how neither this nor @KellytheBelly's includes Jim Croce?

 

So many of his writings included accordion... I remember every one as my bro played accordion and it's amazing the memories his playing bring me happy memories!

 

 


#VegasStrong
Phil Harris, actor and showman, to John Fogerty of CCR: “If I’d known I’d live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.”
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Conversationalist

So in researching Jim Croce, he learned to play accordion at a young age. But I can't seem to find any songs on his 5 albums that feature accordion. Do you know of any?

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Regular Social Butterfly

William, you're right; I erred... ...there don't appear to be any available recordings of Jim Croce with and accordion part of the band.

 

I can only apologize and assume my love of Bro's playing Jim's songs on his accordion and my love of Creole music including squeeze boxes must be why I was led astray. Please accept my apology for the confusion.

 

#StaySafe


#VegasStrong
Phil Harris, actor and showman, to John Fogerty of CCR: “If I’d known I’d live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.”
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Conversationalist

No need for apologies. I was wondering and hoping there might be some Jim Croce accordion songs. I'll keep listening through his albums, unfortunately so few with his untimely death.

Regular Social Butterfly

Then you'll enjoy YouTube: Jim Croce channel (official) which has been top 10 bookmarks for me forever... thanks for sharing this love of his music!

 

#StaySafe


#VegasStrong
Phil Harris, actor and showman, to John Fogerty of CCR: “If I’d known I’d live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.”
Honored Social Butterfly

Love the playlist. Luv the Weird Al inclusions,

have been a big fan of his for forever 🎼💜

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Trusted Social Butterfly

Maybe this will help with your playlist... I started the Accordion Music thread 2 months ago. 

 

https://community.aarp.org/t5/Rock-N-Roll/Accordion-Music/m-p/2490242/highlight/true#M231999

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