Our February Concert

Our February concert started with David Rigby playing accordion and Bob Seed playing drums. They played Merry Widow Waltz, Mountains Of Mourne, Highland Cathedral, The Old Rugged Cross, In The Good Old Summertime, After The Ball Is Over, Daisy, When Irish Eyes, The Spinning Wheel and Swannee River. Their playing was well received. Tom Mansfield then called out “Give that man an oscar”. Ann Parker was our next player with Bel Viso, Yodelling Polka, Black Mask Waltz and Beautiful Days. Colin Ensor then took to the stage and played We Just Couldn’t Say Goodnight, Reverie, Le Grand Chalet and I Wont Tell A Soul. It was now the turn of John Lennox who gave us Three Bells, Under Paris Skies, The Accordionist and Padam Padam. From Gordon Priestly we were entertained with Corrine, Biaca Capana, Du Du Leigtz Mir Im Hertzen and Tiptoe Polka. Andrew Baker then gave a great performance playing Phil The Fluters Ball, Speak Softly Love which is also known as The Godfather Theme, finishing his spot with Has Anybody Seen My Girl. Our next player was Basil Berry who gave us lovely renditions of As Time Goes By, Strangers In The Night and The Nearness Of You. Following on Basil’s heels was Harry Davies who played Jean, Matchstalk Men, Fernando, Memory, Any Dream Will Do and Glen Coe. Rebecca Parker then took her place on the stage and performed Dancing Doll and her debut of My Wild Irish Rose. Graham Driver was our next player. Graham’s selection of tunes was Caroline’s Waltz, Lovely Nancy, Weasels Revenge, Rochdale Coconut Dance and The Bullet, Strike The Bell. It was nearing the end of the night. I had managed to fit everybody in and worked out that I still had time to play 3 tunes myself, so I played Oslo Waltz, Black Mask Waltz and American Patrol. We ended what had been a very entertaining night with Colin Ensor playing All Of Me, The Only Girl In The World, Let Me Be Your Sweetheart, Who Were You With Last Night, Margie, Don’t Dilly Dally and Sweetheart Of All My Dreams. We enjoyed a good chat at the end of the night and we finally left the room at just after 11.30pm, people were already talking about our next concert where they were looking forward to hearing Stefan. That concert is now with us and you can see him this Wednesday. I hope to see you there to support this great artist.

David Batty


How Accordions Are Made

The documentary programme How It’s Made is on Discovery Channel (Sky 520) on Monday 9th April from 19.30 to 20.00. This 30 minute long programme shows how accordions, pineapples & artificial joints are made.


This Wednesday

This Wednesday we are looking forward to seeing the welcome return of Stefan Andrusyschyn to the club. Stefan is married to Denise Leigh who is the blind opera singer who won the tv programme Operatunity, and who sang at the opening of the last Olympics. Stefan and Denise often practice together with Stefan on keyboard or on accordion while Denise practices her singing. Stefan last played for us in July last year when he entertained us with a wide variety of music including Tocata and Fugue, Carnival of Venice, Misty, Indifference, Monti’s Czardas, Beautiful Days, Autumn Leaves, Estoria from The Merry Widow, Figaro’s Aria and Flick Flack. Last time her was here, Stefan was telling us about his guide dog that liked to take him to Tescos and to the local dog grooming parlour, which is not too useful if neither of these are places where Stefan wants to visit. I know that many people are looking foward to seeing his return to Leyland. Stefan has recently bought a very nice and very expensive accordion so we will be treated to a new sound since last time he was at the club. Please make sure you turn up early for a good seat and bring your friends with you. Doors open at 7.30 for an 8pm start. See you there…..


NAO UK Accordion Championships

This is to be held from Friday 24th – Sunday 26th April 2009. The competition is being held at The Metropole Hotel and costs £88 per person for 3 nights, bed, buffet breakfast, evening dinner buffet included. Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights, also at the sister Savoy Hotel also totally refurbished. On Friday evening the entertainment is in the Metropole Hotel ballroom, with a welcome concert. On Saturday the competitions are on the end of the North Pier, these are in the Theatre, Carousel Bar and Exhibition Room. In the Metropole Hotel the competitions are in the Concert Room and Two Further Competition Areas. There will be workshops by international stars In popular styles. An open stage is being held on the North Pier with Free And Easy sessions. Saturday evenings Ceilidh is by ticket only. Last year we had very cold weather, and because the Ceilidh stage is on the end of the pier in an open air setting, we were freezing unless you joined in with the mad dancing, as soon as you sat down you felt the cold. I hope the weather is better this year. There is an evening dinner with music, Trade Show selling Instruments, Music etc. Sunday Evening is Showtime, after hours and Open Stage will be held in The Metropole, Blackpool. Telephone Gina on 01253 822046


Pearl Fawcett Concert Dates

Pearl Fawcett has released a list of concert dates as follows:-
March 31st, 7.30 pm – Chester Accordion Club, Castrol Sports & Social Club, Chester Road (A5032), Whitby, Ellesmere Port, Cheshire CH66 2NX; email Lyn – lynmccallum@lineone.net
April 27th, 7.30 pm – Black Country Accordion & Music Club, Rowley Regis Disability Centre, Rowley Regis B65 9AT; email Barry Smith – bsentmusic@gmx.com
June 25th, 7.30 pm – Harlow Accordion Club, The Links Social Club, Parsloe Road, Harlow, Essex CM19 4RT; email Jean Hanger – jeanhanger@aol.com


Accordions International Festival

Accordions International 2009, organised by Heather Smith, takes place from May 9th to 13th at the Dunes Conference Complex, Pontins Holiday Centre, Lytham St Annes, Blackpool, Lancashire. The guest artistes booked to date include: Alexander Dmitriev and Vitali Dmitriev (Russia), Pino di Modugno (Italy), Giancarlo Caporilli (Italy), and the UK’s Romano Viazzani, Stefan Andrusyschyn and Denise Leigh (soprano), Bert Santilly and Harry Hussey. This accordion festival shares the Pontins site with an organ/keyboard festival, which has a large and very interesting trade show open to all. Workshops take place during the day and there are concerts each evening, plus after hours jam sessions in the Queen Vic pub. The ballroom and Queen Vic are open to both accordion and organ/keyboard festival participants. The trade show to date includes Geoff Holter Accordions, The Accordion Shop, and John Douglas Music. For further information email: heather@accordions.karoo.co.uk


Accordion Stolen in London

A Black Fantini-Allodi CP11 Double Cassotto 120 Bass accordion was stolen from Allodi Accordions in London on Thursday 5 January 2009. I cannot recall exactly if this one had the Fantini or Allodi name but whichever it was, it was written in chrome lettering.The serial number (marked inside the accordion) is either 789 or 790. The “customers” were 3 Romanians including a female, who hid the instrument under her skirt ( I am still trying to get my head round this sight, how she managed to walk out of the door with a 120 bass accordion up her skirt!). Allodi Accordions said “It is my asumption that they will try to sell this instrument on, and therefore I want you all to be warned & also to guard against them trying to steal from you as well. One possible aid to identifying these thieves is the fact that they also own a Hohner Atlantic T accordion, double octave tuned I believe, and some of the keys in the middle of the keyboard have been damaged so they could feasibly come in to request repair quotes on this instrument, or in a ruse to be in your shop to steal something else. For your protection in case they try it with you, the player of the three may be a Polish gypsy rather than Romanian, but it’s difficult to say for sure. He has quite a dark complexion. The two men are quite tall approx 6 foot in my opinion, around the 30s age but the woman looked older, and was dressed in a black voluminous pleated long skirt.Should they come to you or phone you to ask if you’d buy it, please contact the police, or Allodi Accordions, 143-145 Lee High Road, Lewisham, London, SE13 5PF. Tel/Fax: (00 44) (0) 20 8244-3771E-mail:- info@accordions.co.uk”


Steve Roxton

Steve Roxton was the guest artist on the opening night of The Black Country Accordion and Music Club. Also in attendance was The Mayor of Sandwell. The night opened up with a speech from The Mayor, followed by a spot from local comedian Tommy Mundon. Steve Roxton did a two section concert which went down very well according to the reports from the club committee. The club has booked Pearl Fawcett and North Staffordshire Accordion Band as future guest artists. I wish them well with this new club and I hope to visit it myself one day. The club can be contacted on 0121 559 4620.



A closely guarded secret music service used to be only open to invited visitors, but now Spotify has been opened to new accounts from the general public, possibly for a limited time. The service will allow you to listen to almost any track you can think of, free of charge. The service is found on the website www.spotify.com where you download a small piece of software, once downloaded, you type the name of any track or artist you are interested in, and just one keypress and one click later you are listening to it. This is an amazingly fast service, especially considering the track has to be sent over the Internet. It takes no more than one second for the track to start playing from selecting it in a list. The service is completely legal as it is funded by occasional advertising, which normally consists of having to listen to a 30 second advert after every 10 tracks or so. This is a small inconvenience considering the amount of free music you can listen to. I said earlier that the service might only be open to the general public for a short while, the reason for this is that quality of service is important to the Spotify team, and for that reason, if the service is given publicity in a major newspaper for example, then the service will stop new accounts being set up. Existing users will then be able to enjoy this service without hundreds of thousands of people suddenly joining them and slowing things down. If you are interested in Spotify then I suggest you get your account set up now before any restrictions come in to force. I have found lots of tracks on there that I’d forgotten existed, or that I did not think I would ever find again.