An Acadian brand Cajun Accordion
|Other names||diatonic button accordion, melodeon|
(Reeds vibrate within a closely fitting slot)
|Accordion, Bandoneón, Harmonica, Harmonium|
|Joe Falcon, Iry LeJeune, Amédé Ardoin, "Bois Sec" Ardoin, Nathan Abshire|
|Marc Savoy (Louisiana, USA), Eric Martin (France), Larry Miller (Louisiana, USA), Hohner (Germany)|
|Cajun Music, Cajun, History of Cajun Music|
Many different accordions were developed in Europe throughout the 19th century, and exported worldwide. Accordions were brought to Acadiana in the 1890s and became popular by the early 1900s (decade), eventually becoming a staple of Cajun music.
Many of the German factories producing diatonic accordions for the United States market were destroyed during World War II. As a result, some Cajuns, such as Sidney Brown, began producing their own instruments, based on the popular one-row German accordions but with modifications to suit the nuances of the Cajun playing style. Since the end of World War II, there has been a surge in the number of Cajun accordion makers in Louisiana, as well as several in Texas.
The Cajun accordion is generally defined as a single-row diatonic accordion, as compared to multiple-row instruments commonly used in Irish, Italian, polka, and other styles of music. The Cajun accordion has multiple reeds for every button and the number of reeds sounding is controlled by four stops or knobs. Louisiana constructed accordions are usually built in small backyard shops like Marc Savoy's Acadian brand and Larry Miller's Bon Cajun brand.
The most common tuning utilized is the key of C, although the key of D is also relatively common. Some rarer accordions are constructed to in the key of B flat.
Although the instrument is called a Cajun accordion, both zydeco and creole musicians play the Cajun accordion with a zydeco and creole sound respectively. Each musician below is considered important in influencing accordion technique and image.
- Nathan Abshire
- Alphonse "Bois Sec" Ardoin
- Amédé Ardoin
- Jackie Caillier
- Boozoo Chavis
- Geno Delafose
- John Delafose
- Joe Falcon
- Iry LeJeune
- Aldus Roger
- Marc Savoy
- Wayne Toups
- Lawrence Walker
- Jo-El Sonnier
- Jimmy Thibodeaux
Manufacturers and builders
- Hohner (Germany)
- Marc Savoy (Louisiana, USA)
- Eric Martin (France)
- Jr. Martin (Louisiana, USA)
- Randy Falcon (Louisiana, USA)
- Jude Moreau (Texas, USA)
- Bryan Lafleur (Texas, USA)
- Ed Poullard (Texas, USA)
- Diatonic button accordion
- Piano accordion
- Cajun French Music Association
- List of people related to Cajun music
- History of Cajun Music