Thursday, December 28, 2006

TDA Proves Squeezebox Mastery Isn't Required

Remember "polka dictator" Gene Sadowsky? A reader who took issue with the Corvallis Gazette-Times' second piece on Sadowsky wrote to the paper to defend the Oregon accordionist -- and used our humble band as proof that you don't have to be a superlative squeezer to truly entertain.

Writes Mike Ryan of Corvallis:

Anybody who went to this summer’s concert to see "Those Darn Accordions" should understand that mastery of the instrument is not the most important component. These accordionists never used the left side of the instrument. They were "keyboarding" melody and chords, relying on back-up musicians. The leader made the show with showmanship, not mastery of the accordion.

Talk about your backhanded compliments -- thanks, Mike (I think)!

P.S. For the record, the TDA squeezers do use their left hands to play the bass -- sometimes. Paul certainly eschews the bass buttons during his screaming, wah-wah-wrecking solos (and wait till he unveils his customized "rockordion" in 2007). And other times, he and the gals are just too busy singing or dancing (or dancing and singing) to play the left hand. But I can tell you that they can and do play bass lines during the show, even though they do have one of the finest "sleeping master" bass players in the Western Hemisphere. Speaking of which -- bedtime!

P.P.S. When will headline writers learn how to spell "accordion"?

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