Our January Concert

Our January concert started with Colin Ensor playing We Just Couldnt Say Goodbye, Enivrante, I’ll String Along With You and Secondary Waltz. Our next artist was Gerard Dawber playing Jenny Lind, Star Of County Down, Will Ye No Come Back Again and Loch Lomond. Tom Bennett then played Royal Waltz, Night Flower and How Soon, before leaving the stage to our guest artist Bernard Belshaw. Bernard has been a member of the club for about a year now and in that time has picked up the accordion very quickly. His skills as an accomplished keyboard player transferred very well to the accordion, which is how after just one year on the accordion he was playing as our guest artist. Bernard started his first half with Downtown, This Is My Song, Blaze Away, Desifanado and Bridges Of Paris. The theme went a little French then with Moulin Rouge and Pigalle before changing styles with Floral Dance and Blue Tango. After No Other Love, Bernard played the accordion standard Jealousy. Morning Dance, Moonlight Serenade and Thats Why The Lady Is A Tramp finished off his first half session. After the break, we started the second half of the evening with Ann Parker playing The Harry Lime Theme, Snow Waltz, Beautiful Days and My Florence. Colin Ensor, who had opened the evenings entertainment, then did an encore act playing La Vie En Rose, Under Paris Skies, What More Can I Say, Down Forget Me Not Lane and The Maigret Theme. I then quickly played The Black Mask Waltz leaving the stage to Tom Bennett playing Chorus Of The Hebrew Slaves and Paris Nights. It was now time for our guest artist Bernard Belshaw to start his second half. Bernard started with the Jimmy Shand tune Bluebell Polka (mentioned elsewhere in this newsletter), and then a selection of Scottish tunes – A Wee Dockin Doris, My Scots Bluebell, Road To The Isles and Scotland The Brave.Thats Amore was next, followed by Wonderful Copenhagen, At Last, Michelle and The Radetsky March. Bernards next piece was The Theme Tune to the James Bond film, You Only Live Twice. She, was followed by Spanish Gypsy Dance, Time After Time, The Allo Allo Theme Tune, True Love, Moon River and Colnel Bogey. It was approaching 11pm, so Bernard finished his second half with La Mer, Aint She Sweet and La Cumbanchero. This had been a very entertaining evening and proof that we have some great talent in the area. I am sure that after making his debut as a guest artist, Bernard will be in great demand. David Batty


This Wednesday

Its one of our fantastic Local Players Concerts this Wednesday. Please bring your friends and support the great talent thats guaranteed to be there. Please bring your accordion and give us a tune if you can play…I look forward to seeing you there for a great night of entertainment. Doors open at 7.30 for an 8pm Start. I will See you on Wednesday…. David Batty


20th Shetland Accordion & Fiddle DVD

A DVD has been issued featuring several bands performing at a Grand Dance on October 13th in Lerwick at the 2007 Shetland Accordion & Fiddle Festival. The bands include Cullivoe Dance Band, Gordon Shand Scottish Dance Band, Alan Nicolson Dance Band, Sandy Nixon Scottish Dance Band, Jimmy Burgess Dance Band, Roy Hendrie Scottish Dance Band, Da Fustra Dance Band, Susan McFadyen Scottish Dance Band, James Leask Dance Band, Pentlands Ceilidh Band, Leeshinat, Sandy Legget and the Carseloch Ceilidh Band. The comperes are Nicol McLaren and Robert Lovie, and the running time is 115 minutes. For further information email: info@concordemusic.com



‘Sights’ is a novel that tells the story of 13-year old teenage girl who has had a difficult childhood, moves to a new school and makes friends with some other misfits and forms a band, playing the accordion. The girl has an extraordinary gift in that she can see into other people’s futures, though not her own. The book, which is based on fantasy, is set in the 1950s. Published by Delacorte Press.


The Organist Entertains

I thought you might be interested in Nigel Ogden on BBC Radio Two (Sky Channel 0102) on Tuesday 26th February. The programme starts at 22:00 to 22:30. The Organist Entertains explores the best organ music from around the world.


Phil Cunningham

One of Scotland’s leading traditional musicians is to take up a pivotal role at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (RSAMD). Phil Cunningham, one of the biggest names in Scottish folk music, is to be the new artistic director of its Scottish traditional music course. Cunningham, a multi-instrumentalist and composer who is perhaps best known for playing the accordion, will take up his new post at the RSAMD in September. “This is an exciting opportunity for me and I can’t wait to work with the staff and students of the academy’s Scottish music department,” he said.
Professor John Wallace, principal of the RSAMD, said: “Phil Cunningham was right in at the beginning of the Scottish Music degrees in the academy as an adviser when we originally created the BA in Scottish traditional music and the piping degrees. It’s so important that we keep a strong sense of continuity in these courses, that are torch-bearers for Scottish identity.”


Concert Room

You may have noticed if you attended our last practice night, that the tables and chairs in the concert room have thinned out a little. It is now possible to make your way across the room without getting lost, and stuck down a dead end! If you havent been to see our new concert room yet, or you know someone who hasn’t been since Christmas then don’t be a stranger, we look forward to seeing you. Many thanks to all of you who have updated your memberships, I can now buy a stock of stamps, some new toner cartridges for the printers and boxes and boxes of paper for the forthcoming years newsletters.


Jimmy Shand And 50 Cent

The late Sir Jimmy Shand, the legendary Scottish accordionist, born 100 years ago this year, has had his famous ‘Bluebell Polka’ recording bootlegged with the American rap star 50 Cent ‘In Da Club’ in a novelty release titled ‘Jimmy Shand Vs 50 Cent’. The track ’50 Bluebells’ refers to the splicing of ‘In DA Club’ over the top of the Jimmy Shand recording of ‘Bluebell Polka’. Rapper 50 Cent (real name Curtis Jackson) dons a kilt to duet with Sir Jimmy Shand and his accordion. This limited edition release, titled ‘Cowboy Boots’, sold out in record time after being nominated as LP vinyl release of the week in London’s flagship HMV store, prompting further interest via youtube on the Internet. This recording, apart from being artistically unconventional, has also made news as it infringes copyright. The Internet release uses a copyrighted picture of Australian-based Scottish accordionist John Macdonald with Sir Jimmy Shand taken in 1976, which was digitally altered to remove John Macdonald’s head and replace it with the head of rapper 50 Cent. What is certain, is that the accordion has now been introduced to a new generation of rappers.


David Keen

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of David Keen ABCA (TD), LBCA, Editor of the magazine “Accordion World” which he started in 1998 and continued until today. David Keen is a past NAO Chairman for the years 1985, 87, 88 and 89, accordionist, and an adjudicator. David passed away on the morning of 9th February 2008 at 7.30am, aged 52, at The Michael Sobell House, Mount Vernon Hospital, Northwood, Middlesex after a long battle with cancer. Funeral arrangements will be announced shortly. David will be sadly missed, our thoughts are with his mother Elsie at this very sad time. A truly memorable person and supporter of the accordion.


Romano Viazzani on Advert

A video advert for the new Fiat 500 features the sound of Romano Viazzani (who has played as one of our guest artists at Leyland) playing ‘Winter’ from Vivaldi’s ‘Four Seasons’, a track from the solo accordion CD Piazzolla/Bobic. The music provides a stylish Italian Baroque period backdrop to a test-drive in this retro 50s design car as it cruises down country roads and lanes.