Even More Interesting Playing Hints for Accordion here on VIDEO EXAMPLES 4


Developing a more interesting arrangement on your accordion

Bringing a couple of old tunes like new using 5 or 6 different methods introduced to you one at a time. Trying to get into the art of playing musically rather than repeating the tune accurately but thoughtlessly.

 

You might want to try adding these details one at a time as there is rather a lot here, despite some of these having been mentioned before in earlier videos.

 

Oh except (wait for it!) the boom chick a boom which probably deserves its own video

 

 


A Mixed Chat and Demo

I really don’t know how to paraphrase what today’s video is about except it does contain some interesting ways of playing which sound complicated but are slowed down for you. Anyway quite a lot here for you on Video 100

 

 


Why is this potentially boring tune so popular, and how to make it more interesting and musical

This is both about a tune which is strangely popular amongst accordion players that I know and working out why it is. Then of course I play it so that it works in the opposite direction from the way that they like it. I just like doing that!

 

This links in with a previous point I made about making music more meaningful by playing more chord changes in it but you should find these fairly easy to find. The accordion stradella bass layout makes most close chord moves very logical so these are often the ones that work best.

 

At the end I also point out that when moving up a chord button in the bass you will get a nice downward chromatic movement of the notes by going over to the alternative bass note row on the new chord

 

 


Trying out and practicing various bass button runs

This is either some in depth analysis of some common useful fast bass runs played in triplets or a nice little practice session for you .

 

The new method I use here of playing the right hand first and then trying the same thing on the bass buttons could be a good practice method for you also.

 

It could even be extended to playing bits of tune on right hand and then as a challenge to yourself in the bass

 

And of course watch out for the hand signals in this video about where the counterbass row is being used!

 

 

 


How to Enrich the Tone by playing in thirds and Sixths

This is more about playing in thirds and even including some sixths. What are thirds? They are simply alternate notes below the melody G below B, A below C etc.

 

What are sixths? Simply thirds upside down or inverted. A below C is the distance of a third but A with C below it is obviously a greater distance apart so is a sixth

 

But I will add one need to know item here. How do you know if the new note added below is to be flattened or sharpened? Well it should normally follow the normal version for the key you are playing in.

 

It Takes a little extra thought if you are playing in a minor key. Particularly whether to follow the harmonic or melodic scale. The melodic minor is probably best. I will put that into English for you!

 

In E minor, which has the F sharp belonging to the key of G, for example the D will be sharpened if going upwards but left alone to the basic key signature if going downwards.

 

if you need to go down from the sharpened version of the D the C will also need to be sharpened. Otherwise it will no longer sound like you are moving to a next door note and will sound kind of bumpy. A bit like an oriental or possibly Eastern European effect

 

If the top note moves chromatically outside the normal key with a semitone move the lower note will probably do the same movement, also moving jsut a semitone.

 

 

Playing a basic rock beat - simple but effective

Apologies for a fair wait for the tunes in order to give you a clear idea of the rhythm, they do come in eventually honestly! It will work when they come in I promise, a bit difficult to do a rhythm without a melody to help direct it.

This is an unusual rhythm for accordionists and a style of music which can either sound forced and unnatural or even totally irrelevant when attempted on accordion.

In retrospect I might have relaxed back into a straight four renditions more or even ordinary note chord note chord to make for more flowing relaxed tunes.

This is a possible solution. It may be the starring point hopefully for your own possibly different ideas!

 

 


The rich interesting sounds of sliding chords

Today’s post is particularly about making interesting sounds on the accordion and of course about how to do it.

The chord sweeping technique as I’ve just decided to call it is one which allows you to connect even quite far apart chords and should as I point out be used in conjunction with all the other ways of playing that you know.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

 

After all the chord you are gliding up to may use different fingers and/or be a different shape than the starting chord. It may have rasied black notes in different areas of the two chords, which will also vary the finger spacing.

 

The best I can tell you that I think that I visualise the new chord happening in my hand so that my fingers adapt to it as soon as I leave the first chord.

It is still effective to carefully put gaps for accenting into your phrase and indeed to mix it with playing in carefully presented individual notes as I show at the end

 

 


Allocating Bass Patterns in 4 to a Bar, an easy bass riff, a beguine pattern and more

Today’s video for accordionwise.com is mainly about bass playing on the accordion of course.

 

First there is an easy bass note riff for you to practice then I go through different ways of dividing up four beats in a bar and try it out on a little tune I’m sure you’re familiar with.

 

Almost accidentally on the way we discover a nice way of doing a beguine or rhumba bass pattern with a good amount of movement in it.

 

My philosophy is that it doesn’t matter how long you have been playing a tune you can always find a better way to do it and of course in my view that means a more musical way.

 

 


Using the special Arpeggio Fingering plus running 3rds

A nice sunny sound this morning combining what can be done with my extended arpeggio fingering system which uses no thumb crossings and the use of thirds which are hidden in the arpeggio that can also be used running between next door notes.

 

This arpeggio system can be used to join up the notes in a widely spaced arpeggio which will include both thirds and fourths, or it can be used to geive a secure base for separate notes in your tune 

 

There is quite a lot of music here to listen to but for some reason after a fair bit of it my camera cut cut off. Sorry about that but it was too successful a video I think to do again

 

 


Handy Bass Riffs for the Pennsylvania Polka

This one is a little bit accordionish compared to my usual stuff. But I think it will be popular particularly to anybody who liked the film Groundhog Day. Some thoughts and demonstrations on the Pennsylvania polka particularly with regard to the bass button bits.

 

The video may have squeezed together slightly a couple of times, and missed a note or two, or else I did! It is quite a long video. Mainly so I can go over the items sevral times to try to make them clear for you

 

The bass riffs featured are F C D A C, C D E F, C D D# E, and Bb B C. The last one plays a third below the melody for quite a nice effect, simultaneously of course with the tune whereas the others play solo to join up bits of the tune. And it is simply three notes of the chromatic scale.

 

C D D# E is almost all just the chromatic scale (except for the move between the tirst two notes) and Bb B C is just three notes of the chromatic scale.

I am afraid I was talking rather fast again but I hope this explanation helps make up for that!

 

 


This Tune has a very lively Latin style Beat

But I wonder if you can work out where this tune came from. Nto the usual sources.

 

Note that it is the accenting and precise rhythm of the accompaniment that makes it sound so different from "normal" accordion music, yet it is not otherwise that different.

 

It suits my Victoria accordion with its strong tones so well and this time I selected the L M+ H register to play it on, similar to the full master register but a little sharper with no intune middle pitch reed.

 

I let myself play this more continuously than I would an ordinary waltz or straight 4 beat.

 

 


A Full or Sparkling Playing Sound As Needed

Today I am highlighting three subjects, connected because all about playing the right hand keyboard and all this time on a sound combination you will almost all have, even on an accordion with only three bass reeds namely L M M+

 

These can be found on most instruments even those having only three treble sets of reeds. On my Victoria which as an octave tuned one it is of course there amongst the 15 different registers and also on the Piermaria musette styled accordion.

 

This covers the use of chords always sounding good on the upper sections of the treble keyboard though sometimes a little bit thick on the lowest octave, and variations of tone from touch for a different more sparkling sound even on the same register. Also a reminder of the need to prepare your fingers over the notes for the phrases to ensure your extra decorations come out easily and efficiently.

 

As I have mentioned before even if playing slowly you should always be covering the keys of your next phrase with your fingers already in place.

 

 


Invigorating an old tune on accordion

This is a bonus video which I felt compelled to add. If there are some songs you know so well that you are totally fed up with them you might gain some inspiration from this.

 

What happened was this. I found myself playing a tune which sounded nice and it took me a moment or two to realise that it was a tune which I used to play at least three times a week over many decades.

 

I would not have wanted to hear it again, and yet this time the accordion version came out, with extra care, sounding really nice and I like it again.

 

Here is another well-known song, Satin Doll with what seems to be a very boring unmelodic melody line at the beginning. Suddenly I realised that the unique sound of the accordion can make it very meaningful again.

 

See if you have some songs of your own that fall into this category and see what happens when you revisit them with the special emotion that only the accordion can add

 

 


Treating Bass Parts with expression with phrasing and from the bellows 

Just when you thought it was safe to pick up your accordion here is another angle to think about.

While pursuing a beautiful sound which I hope you are after from your instrument you may discover that as well as controlling phrasing and bellows movement for the right hand it’s maybe even more important to cover for the left hand

 

This is about varying the attack and duration of the chords especially in the most common bass patterns plus bellows control to make them sound more pleasant.

 

And also with the tunes applying phrasing to make them as distinctive as if they were on the treble and of course adding bellows expression with the same care as if they were on the treble keyboard (or possibly even more care!)

 

 


Finding Suitable Right Hand Chords

This is a video for accordion players on harmony musical theory and I think it will need a lot of clarification on the website version where I will put extra info with diagrams etc.

What I am trying to say here is that while harmony is worked out from the bass note up in practical terms you will want to work in the opposite direction making it match the note of the tune with some extra guidance from the bass button choice of chord.

It is possible to make three different shapes under the tune, the evenly spaced root chord with the chord note at the bottom and just thirds (alternate notes) over it, or two different shapes for first or second inversion (when the chord name is moved to the top and then the next one put up there)

Working in the opposite direction from the tune downwards you can choose one of the three shapes eg root position GBD 1st inversion BDG (possibly the most frequent choice) or 2nd inversion DGB. I spelt those chords upwards possibly would have been clearer downwards as DBG GDB and BGD

These will normally be similar if not identical to your bass button chord and there may be a delay in matching. All the extra notes will match the key you are playing in, at least up to the point where a tune may veer into a different key (modulate)

There will often be shared notes which might be played by the same fingers between two chords and/or small next door movements. This should help with your choice of finger to use

There may also be individual notes of the chord held over for a while “suspended” making an extra sus chord. Such as G Dsus4 to D spelt downwards from top BGD AGD to A F# D

 

 

 

And an explanation for the video demonstration you have just been watching  is in the picture below

 

 

 


Alternating chords between left and right hand for a lively Latin feel

With a non playing guest appearance from Doris!

 

Applying a slightly syncopated Latin style mood to a very popular tune which can come out surprisingly dull on accordion otherwise.

 

I should have also emphasised that without the melody played in thirds it would be dead in the water and notice how effective it is to stop the rhythm towards the end with long sustained bass chords adding more point to the bass button rhythm being taken up again after resting the ear from it.

 

A combination of lively and relaxing in the same tune is always nice to make good listening music.

 

 


Use some Simple Techniques Logically to make up a Good Accordion Arrangement

This is such a well-known tune that I can’t think of its name but I am playing it to illustrate some basic principles of building up an arrangement

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This is one of the main things that accordionwise.com is about. Playing in a more musical manner to appeal to a wider audience and that is improving the status of the accordion. And hopefully yours too.

 

As you learn or classify new styles to incorporate into your playing you also need to work out when to use them. And of course when not to!

 

So I hope this arrangement and commentary helps your thinking so that you play in a way that stays interesting as you go through a tune

 

 


Putting some Extra Swing into your Accordion Bass Part

Today’s video is about putting a little bit of swing in your bass part which can add more life to an otherwise dull or repetitive arrangement.

This includes using a dotted beat rather than an even timing and even sometimes reversing the usual order of note to chord

You can also of course put a quick triplet in as a link either ordinarily or with this type of rhythm.

 

 


The Main website Intentions - to exploit the full Musical Possibilities of the Accordion

This video cuts off a little abruptly when I ran out of storage but not before making a point about what is so special about the accordion as an instrument.
 
Although lots of people take up the accordion because of its special and powerful sound and because playing recognisable tunes on it is so easy this should only be the beginning.
 
Accordionwise.com is out there to Point out the deeper musical possibilities of the instrument and encourage an approach to playing which is nicer to listen to for the general musical audience
 
Here I point out that the bellows is not there just to keep the music from stopping but is an expressive element that you should physically feel happening while you are playing.
 
Also the importance of being able to vary how much is being played on the bass buttons in order to let the music breather and so you can appreciate better what is happening in the melody

 

 


A waltz variation, a popular waltz and a short new Bass run

This video gives you a nice little waltz variation to try amongst other more conventional patterns perhaps, plus a version of the Merry Widow Waltz which I hope will further illustrate using phrasing and bellows pressure variations to present the tune in a meaningful way, which should vary depending on the performer.

The waltz variation has a triplet on the second beat of the bar, played with alternate fingers, i.e. dum diddely dum. The fast bit could also be done on the third beat as in dum dum diddely and you could go to a different bass note at the end of or after the triplet

A further bonus is you may notice just once a bass run you may like to try
F E(counterbass) E-flat C B-flat

If you stay with it long enough - it has lots of repeats - you may also notice a bit where I included arpeggios showing the extended fingering plus rocking the wrist to include two notes simultaneously.

You will notice I also got an abrupt cutoff due to running out of computer memory! Sorry I will fix this soon for future videos

 

 


Forming an arrangement to make Sense Musically

This little video I hope shows fairly clearly the parts of n arrangement fitting together, some of it is in triplets as extra detail inside a smoothly divided easy ballad rock beat.

Also whereas I have before been showing bass melodic join ups this time I am using mainly ones where the bass is marking time until the tune starts.

But not with an oompah bass and mostly stopping on a strong beat for the tune to start off again from bouncing off it as I say.

But when you got used to to that happening carrying on playing bass buttons through In the next phrase of the tune.

 

It goes without saying but is also often forgotten that when you devise your arrangement you should have a rough idea of what it will sound like!

 

 


Going from Bass Chord to Note makes a nice smooth accompaniment sound

This is about leaning on the chord buttons rather than the single note buttons in the base to create a new smoother sound you can use in slow four tempos.

 

Also a nice easy bass and chord riff you can use, a reminder about four note chromatic and partly chromatic bass run link ups, easier approximations of that tiff using only two buttons and a demonstration of how these techniques can be applied even in a beguine or rhumba

 

 


Come Prima as a 6/8 rather than a waltz

This video is another exposition of 12/8 or 6/8 time signatures, which is where the 2 or 4 beats in a bar are divided into 6 or 12 instead of the usual 4 or 8. The individual groups of 3 are sometimes assumed to be lots of little waltzes but they are best I think seen as part of the overall pattern.


The intro before the tune is played on bass buttons only, also some of the links later.

Hence it is best to avoid getting bogged down into the usual note chord chord grouping which tends to split up the melody being accompanied instead of holding it together.

Although sometimes here I have done so on the linking passages a little to identify them to the ear.

 

 

 


How to locate that bass button you need (from a note in the main row)

Just a resume of finding some notes in the bass buttons and the intervals. Stops a bit sudden due to storage problems. But plenty to take in first. Sorry!

 

A list of various intervals from different locations by note name will be done later as well as the picture diagram, but for now it will be useful for you if you can think in terms of intervals yourself to convert them into notes.

 

 

And what that actually means from C. You will need extra diagrams later from other notes.

  

 


 

How to Play lighter and Easier for Greater Effect

The effectiveness of UNDERSTATEMENT in your playing.

I hope you will find this video inspirational because it is something you can do to make your music play better and sound better without a lot of heavy technical practice.

This is how your music can sound sweeter to your audiences and all you have to do is remember to play like this and interact with your accordion. Playing like this makes it sound like you are playing a better accordion (and not doing so vice versa)

Don’t let the collective term for a lot of Accordions become an onslaught of Accordions or even worse an attack of Accordions! Just play easier for a more musical and pleasant sound for your audiences

 

 


Using Additional more frequent chord changes

The huge difference using extra chords through a song can make is the main subject today. I hope I have made it simple enough to understand but I probably haven’t just because there are so many ways of doing it and different uses of it.

You can add extra chords with the right hand on top of the existing ones, only do it against the single note in the bass and come back to the expected chord when the bass chord comes in, it can all happen in the right hand, you can hold onto the original chord creating a sense if suspense until the arrival of the expected harmony and so on.

You can even use extra chords between phrases of the song instead of bass linking runs or extra right hand melody lead ins and so on.

Mainly I might explain this as how often you change chords is the difference between harmonising a whole phrase or an entire bar and treating individual notes of the tun separately.

It may also be that some notes are leading the tune around specially and will particularly benefit from their own individual different chords.

Please feel free to seek clarity or simply ask me what on earth I was talking about. I may not have been at my clearest on this subject!

What chords to use is a vast subject suitable for an extended university course but two points may help. One is that the most extreme clashes sound wonderful once resolved onto a non controversial chord and secondly they might be the subdominant or dominant chord (chord button below or above) used momentarily since there will be one shared note. The chord button above or below!

In the video sometimes the clash does not occur because the unexpected extra chord occurs only on the beat with a bass note rather than a chord.

However having two extremely different chords sounding at the same time is OK if you have the feeling that, like in reading a horror story, everything is going to come right at the end of the phrase with matching chords then.

They may also actually a more built up with extra thirds piled up which will want to resolve into the basic chord. As in a G11 going to a plain G chord though a G9 may want to go to a C just as a G7 would

 

 


A good easy bass treatment for an old pop tune

 

there could be some useful instruction for some of you here. Here’s a tune that I’m not really particularly proud of playing or like playing but it came up in this morning’s practice.

 

It does have some very useful moves in it and I made it a little bit less blatantly obvious by sharing the playing between right and left pounds and by a certain amount of syncopation in the right hand to stop the sound coming to match together and being square.

 


Varying a bass part simply - Also adding a new Treble Part

 

This morning’s video is about two subjects both very easy to understand I think.

 

And both can make a tremendous difference to your arrangements and therefore to the sound of your playing.

 

The first about putting a little variation into your bass parts so that you play more effectively and do not for your audience with and and changing baseline .which is of course too predictable to listen to

 

The second is more about playing two parts in your right hand which means you do not need support from anybody else you are your own do duettist.

 

How far can you go with the other fingers while still holding onto your thumb investigate here and even though you probably think that you have very small hands? I think you will be surprised at what you can do.

 

 


Subtle variations by feeling at one with your accordion - Also A different kind of 7th chord

A reminder this morning about enjoying the amount of control you have over your accordion sound for which it is probably unique. Enjoy using it so that your accordion is like a part of you.

Go on just muck around like I have here trying this effect which also allows you to add additional bass or treble “comments” against a fading melody note with apparently perfect balance

Then a note about an unusual chord you can use which is a seventh chord that actually belongs in the key you think it does. Either called a Major 7th or a sharpened 7th. I would recommend adding the sharpened 7th note over a major bass note obviously not over a 7thchord where there would be a nasty clash and if you try adding the sharpened 7th in the bass it wo also not sound right

 

 


A more secure right hand technique - Also  extra bass notes for diminished chords

Something about the feeling you can nurture when playing your accordion to keep you in touch with the instrument. Possibly the snesation of virtually holding your right hand keyboard can give you more security.

 

It will certainly place your fingers into a better stronger position, punching notes down securely rather than flailing about.

 

But also a more technical discussion about notes you can use when using a diminished chord. Apart from the name note of course like G for G diminished. Just a little bit of knowledge and thinking about this may be useful for other circumstances.

 

ou will probably very rarely need to use this directly but the special movements may come in useful

 

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Another Boogie Style Bass and a Beatles Tune

If you haven’t tried this before you’re going to be completely knocked out by this.

A very useful boogie style base which I have also applied to a well-known Beatles tune.

 

The pattern isounds like CCEEGGAG which can also be played as CEGAG with the chord button substituted for the repeated note on the first three beats or played as CEG AG very easily with the right hand playing the extra chords.

 

The Art is of course to be able to use this pattern based on different notes as needed by the tune. As in FACDC GBDED etc

 

Notice that this chooses my favourite place to find the next tone up paradoxically lower down on the bass such as A after G from main row to counterbass missing out the C chord area (jumping over it).

 

This makes the pattern much more compact and I think makes moving the pattern around easier.

 

 


Bellows Control but not as you remember it

When you start playing an instrument successful tutoring will give you a method that works to start you playing. These do not always work for ever and as soon as you start playing anything other than single line melody and basic bass lines you discover this with the bellows control angle.

 

Looking inwards today I am sharing my investigations into trying to cure my very worst accordion playing fault.

 

Well here is the result of my thoughts and experiments which after over 50 years playing will not disappear instantly so this is ongoing.

 

I refer to the unpleasant effect of running out of bellows direction mid phrase or more specifically mid note to produce that gasping out of breath sound that is so disturbing.

 

The original way you learned to always use two bar or four bar phrases no longer works once you sometimes start playing extra right hand chords, or even use a register passing more air past the reeds.

 

One of the answers is to admit it and another maybe to utilise it and deliberately change direction mid phrase or even mid beat. But still of course between notes, not one a main note is sounding.

 

Another where you want to play a long note at the very end of a piece is to cut it short and just finish up with the bass chord pattern which being moving will not get that effect. You will of course still have the two bar or four bar ending that you wanted and can even add the right hand chord in again separately at the end if you wish.

 

A further advantage of stopping thw treble sound at this point is of course that you will no longer be obscuring what may be an interesting bass part by playing over it.

 

Overall I think the strategy should be to remember to change bellows direction a little bit before you think you need to. Perhaps not a surprise idea seeing that preparation to play is necessary for successful music making in all other ways.

 

 


How to Play the Difficult bits of your songs Just as Well as the Easy Parts

Why do we mess up sometimes when we are playing despite always practising?

There may be that part of a tune which hits a total road block and stops you in your tracks when you get there. Here is why and how to practice so as to get better results.

Even harder to follow is the advice when you join up your “easy” and “hard” bits is how do you play the piece at the same speed? The answer of course is ridiculously easy but may take more self control than you possess!

To play the difficult bits as fast as the easy ones when you put them together finally you can start by playing the easy bits as slow as your comfortable speed for the difficult bits. Then you can speed it up just a tiny bit each time and you will end up playing all the parts equally fast - they will still match in other words.

Have you the self control to follow this advice? It does take a lot of it but is not a matter of talent, ability or wonderful fingers so it is well worth applying yourself properly however short your practice time is.

 

 


Your accordion Repertoire. A New example and a viewpoint

What tunes do you consider you can play on accordion and do you consider limitations due to whether they are French, folk, ethnic etc? Or even one of those accordion recital pieces written specially for accordion in the 30s to 50s chosen for their difficulty and novelty rather than musical depth.

The opposite view is what I call the scalp hinting approach of I am now going to play THIS on accordion which will not necessarily give you a nice musical result. And at all times remember please that the accordion is a musical instrument not a blunt one. (Rant over).

I would say if you feel an affinity for the tune then try it with both respect and an open mind and you will have interceded for the tune as a musician who happens to play the accordion (and rather well hopefully) rather than as an accordionist.

I have deliberately not named the tune used to avoid preconceptions ad to what it should sound like though you will get it if you listen to it.

 

 


A bouncy bass button rhythm for a sunny day style tune

A nice bright start to a weekend with a catchy new rhythm laid out for you and demonstrated on a sunshine filled tune.

 

Not very far from a standard bass pattern, mainly the difference was in the note lengths being adjusted into a sharp bouncy pattern.

 

You might also like to know that the fast repeated chords in the intro and short interludes were (so far as I know!) done with a combination of finger action, bellows sstart-stop, and even alternating with the bass chord section. I was quite pleased that theese therefore came out pretty clean and incisive.

 

Worked pretty well except when occasionally I tried to add an unrehearsed variation.

 

Never do that. For public performance always play the “safe” version of your tune. Bad Bad Alex!

 

 

 


 

Four or five tunes and methods inspired by a dream, a new run sequence. an accompaniment including 6ths, going between shuffle feel and straight feel in one song and a reminder of how to choose how much to play in the left hand. - Phew!

Good value here with a video inspired by a dream. Includes the difference between different methods of dividing up the beat for the left hand and reference to at least five different tunes.

 

The sequence at the beginning is 

G (G chord) G G F# F

F F Eb C (C chord C Chord)

E F F# G

Bold indicates use of counterbass row for that note

 

 

Ways of Playing and Using Arpeggios on Accordion

Some thoughts and possible exercises for you based on arpeggios, which are thought of as an important part of a piano sound.

Less so on accordion because traditional style playing is based in alternate bass notes and chords and they are more often seen as part of a virtuoso right hand fast arpeggio format to dazzle your audiences.

But of course you can do your arpeggios which create a special new way of playing, only on bass, only on treble or on a virtually limitless number of ways of sharing the arpeggio between them

 

Note that I refer at one point to Am chords where I should state Am7. And that the easy overall arpeggio method can be summarised as simply

Bass note

BassChord

Right Hand Chord

Left Hand Chord

 

All these solutions can sound a bit brash used by themselves but of course the art is to slip them into your arrangements where they fit and are mixed with other methods. Here I have to make them very obvious for you! This can also lead to my playing in a more wooden manner (I hope!) than usual!

 

 


Extra depth and harmony from playing thirds above in the right hand, Also a simple lively arrangement my way

How you can add extra depth using an easy 4 or 5 note bass run and demonstration of a simple popular tune played as I would do so.

 

The tune is played full speed this time so you will have to watch and listen carefully but I do isolate some of the techniques for you afterwards.

 

 


Basic but more thoughtul Waltz Patterns, plus an improved but easier to play chord

Going from bass note to-chord in your waltz time accompaniment can be done in several different ways with either the first or second note short or alternatively played smoothly and long enough to join up to the next note, if it is a different one of course.

Mixing these creates variety in your music and infers a measure of thought which in turn encourages thoughtful appreciative listeners.

Particularly in the long version I strive to play the longer version with diminishing volume from the bellows. Not always easy of course.

The other part of the thinking this morning was to substitute the big move from a G chord to B minor (it’s relative minor) from a massive jump in the bass buttons to a disturbingly close one featuring a move to the next door major chord but with the counterbass of your original G chord which is B.

To make this clearer first you have G Bass in main bass note row with G major chord alongside it. Then you simply move out to the same place in the counterbass row to B which belongs to the same G chord. However at this point you move across to the next up chord of D (the dominant) to play with it.

Adding these together you get a very satisfying B minor 7th chord, or B D F# A. An improvement on the original harmony but without clashing with it, simply one extra note.

Maybe this is the original written harmony and I never noticed it before in over 50 years of playing that tune!

 

 


How contrasting phrasing styles helps communicate with your listeners

Find the contrast between manipulating the tunes timing against the bass or between using an absolutely straight synchronisation between the hands and you can use it in your arrangements to help tell the story of your song.

I might also have said you can also give a different interpretation of similar successive phrases by varying which notes are played slightly early or late.

 

 


Communicate what you are doing to your audience with this technique

Of course people like the accordion for its sound and the tun es you are able to play on it, but that is not all.

 

People in the audience are probably curious about how you are getting your effects and this is one way to engage them on this level as well as on the actual sound they are listening to.

 

This is both Easy and Dangerous!

 

Find the contrast between manipulating the tunes timing against the bass or between using an absolutely straight synchronisation between the hands and you can use it in your arrangements to help tell the story of your song.

I might also have said you can also give a different interpretation of similar successive phrases by varying which notes are played slightly early or late.

 


Two against four makes for a tidy arrangement

Just a reminder today about considering how much bass work you actually need to keep your tune and rhythm going and make a good sounding effect. Not as much as you would think of course and I think we may have touched on this before but here are some different tunes to try it on


I did a little bit more than limiting to two against four between right and left hand of course at times and sometimes played conventionally, but I think you will get the basic premise of four plays in crotchets (quarter notes) against two minims (half notes) in the other part.

And sometimes I cut off or even sustained through the bar the bass on the first beat to make way for the treble or even phrased together for the emphasised bits. There is also the possibility of only having right hand solo for the first bar of crotchets or faster notes, a favourite method for jazz or modern players.

I seem to have played the same tune twice at the beginning and end instead of going into 7th chords as promised, but maybe later!