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Main article: Accordion
Diatonic button accordion (German make, early 20th century).

A button accordion is a type of accordion on which the melody-side keyboard consists of a series of buttons rather than piano-style keys. The first button accordion is credited to Franz Walther in 1850.[1]

Types of Button Accordions[edit]

A wide variation in keyboard systems, tuning, action and construction of these instruments exists. The two main examples of this are the chromatic button accordion and the diatonic button accordion. The single row button accordion, also known as the Cajun accordion to scholars, is another version of the button accordion.[2]

Diatonic Button Accordion The diatonic button accordion has two or three rows of buttons, each row tuned to a certain key. They are usually seen in music genres such as Cajun and Norteño music. Also considered Bisonoric, meaning that the same button can produce two sounds. Another feature is that accidentals are not included, usually there will be a third row of buttons to represent the accidentals (which in turn makes it a chromatic diatonic).

Chromatic Button Accordion The chromatic button accordion is unisonoric meaning that the same button produces one sound. This accordion also has 3-5 rows of buttons and are not limited to one specific key as are the diatonic button accordions. This type of accordion is very popular in French music.[3]

Main Components[edit]

There are four main components of any accordion: the reeds, bellows, buttons or keys, and the switches. The accordion has a treble side, which usually encases the reeds, and a bass side, which usually has the buttons and/or keys. The buttons or keys control the pitch which is on the treble side, and there are usually buttons on the bass side that are harder to see but can be tactfully identified with something like a gem or crosshatch pattern. The bellows are considered the life of the instruments as they are the ones expanding and contracting air into the reeds, and are usually made out of paper. Lastly, the switches control the timbre or voice of the instrument.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Strahl Harrington, Helmi; Kubik, Gerhard (2001). "Accordion". Grove Music Online (Oxford Music Online ed.). Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2014-09-18. 
  2. ^ Sexton, Rocky L. (January 1, 2001) [1st. Pub. 2000]. "Chapter 14: Zydeco Music and Race Relations in French Louisiana". In Kivisto, Peter & Rundblad, Georganne. Multiculturalism in the United States: Current Issues, Contemporary Voices. SAGE Publications. p. 176. ISBN 978-1-452-25174-5. 
  3. ^ a b "Squeezebox stories". The Arhoolie Foundation. 

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Button_accordion — Please support Wikipedia.
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Irish Times

Irish Times
Sun, 24 May 2015 02:00:00 -0700

The button accordion and concertina set off a journey into sound like two best friends skipping through the green on fair day. Theirs' is a soulful conversation. It's uplifting and infectious. The dancers hit the floor like thunder. There is palpable ...
Thu, 21 May 2015 18:52:30 -0700

Barynya presents Ukrainian, Cossack, Jewish, Gypsy, and Russian traditional dancing, music, songs, and virtuoso performances on musical instruments including the balalaika, and garmoshka (folk button accordion). Korean Drum Dance Ensemble with ...
Youngstown Vindicator
Thu, 21 May 2015 10:32:41 -0700

National Button Accordion Festival, Bessemer Croatian Club, 601 E. Poland Ave., Bessemer, Pa. Accordion and polka music concerts with dancing. Food and refreshments available. Admission May 23 is $8; for May 24 and 25, $10; and weekend special (all ...


Tue, 19 May 2015 01:17:21 -0700

While a small group, usually comprising violin, button accordion, and tambourines played and sang, the “bitten” danced themselves into a frenzy until they collapsed, purged of the spider's poison. Tarantismo emerged among peasants, landless farm ...

Texas Public Radio

Texas Public Radio
Fri, 15 May 2015 06:07:30 -0700

"Conjunto came about when the German and other European settlers brought this little squeeze box—the button accordion—with them in sort of the mid to late 1800s here to Texas and northern Mexico. The Mexican people here adopted the button accordion.

New York Times

New York Times
Sat, 16 May 2015 14:11:15 -0700

On a recent afternoon, a man named Dave Duggan was wandering downtown with a push-button accordion strapped to his chest. Mr. Duggan, 60, said he was a newcomer to Asheville: “I've been just trippin' and travelin' around,” he said. As for the accordion ...

San Antonio Express-News (subscription)

San Antonio Express-News (subscription)
Thu, 14 May 2015 04:55:06 -0700

For the first time, four instructors will conduct Saturday morning's master button accordion class at the Guadalupe Theater — Bene Medina, Boni Mauricio, Santiago Jimenez Jr. and Santiago Garza. “It'll be an interesting experiment,” Tejeda said about ...

St. Cloud Times

St. Cloud Times
Sat, 09 May 2015 20:56:28 -0700

"A bunch," Neuman said, including the concertina, the chromatic button accordion, organ and guitar. He became interested in the concertina because his great uncle, Joe Langner, had one. Neuman is self-taught; he gives full credit to a few instruction ...

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