Remember guys, my goal is to chronicle the evolution and process of learning of the lone Cajun accordion player learning the Cajun music on his own. The Bravenet serves nicely to do just that. Believe me, there are many out there in this very situation, alone and without guidance. I'm not going to give you any videos to prove myself, or my worth, or how good I am on that got dam accordion! Just assume that I'm pretty good, and that I want you to achieve your own style, not copy mine! It is obvious to me that over time since the beginning of the Cajun accordion players that the system for playing Cajun music on an accordion is not so forthcoming or easy to attain or even recognize for that matter. Oh, you might be able to clumsily peck out a song or two in half an hour for your first time like I did, and or copy or "parakeet" a few more songs for good measure, but to understand the possibilities and methods of playing a Cajun accordion. For some reason, it still takes many,many years and some people never even come close to being any good on Cajun accordion! And nobody, in my opinion is giving up any concrete method or system whether they be Cajun or non Cajun! Got Dammit do I have to spell it out for you?! I can see it here on the Bravenet how much ignorance there is about the 4 different positions that you can play on one Cajun accordion. I can see how some people still don't know the "musical keys" (C,G,F,D) for each of those 4 positions on a "C" accordion, and if they do, they sure don't want to discuss it much or give up the info, or take time to type it for all to see. I can see how no one seems to know the best combination of songs, be they Cajun, Country, Swamp Pop, or Blues, for a Cajun accordion player to start with to make him or her realize and or learn all of these 4 positions and the keys accordingly, and when and how to apply them to Cajun music. The ignorance, the hard headedness, the secrets hoarding, the "Who's The Best" saber rattling, and crappy musicianship and bad singing all still remain. The ignorance and all this stuff is not as bad as it once was, but it still remains. I believe you learn how to be a good Cajun accordion player by "feel" and "sound". In other words (playing by ear). But I also believe (playing by ear) produces ignorance that passes on from generation to generation of accordion players. We must become more musically literate and learn the got dam instrument and all it is capable of, and last but not least, HOW TO TEACH ALL OF IT easily and quickly. There have been so many cases of Cajun songs being copied, changed, and manipulated by these Cajun and non Cajun musicians just by changing the got dam key the song was originally played in. That takes talent, but not creativity. You want to make your mark, create a new song. Don't just copy, steal, or parakeet someone else's song, have it recorded, and claim the fame. If you are frustrated with me and want more than I have to offer, then figure it out on your own for the rest of your short life or what ever you have left of it. To each his own. You have your whole life to learn how to play like Aldus Roger, or whoever the hell it is that you call your hero. Wouldn't it be nice to have some kind of system that shows you exactly how to play just like them and even better than them?!! And even in your own style??
"A polka accordion player from California walks into a Cajun bar and see's this old man just cranking down on an accordion on the bandstand with his band. The crowd is dancing, drinking, talking and laughing and the atmosphere in the house is electric! The Polka player ponders about how he is never able to excite people like this with Polka music. The Champion Polka player walks up to the old Cajun man and says, "Hey mister, I've never heard music like that come from an accordion! You're really really good! Can you tell me what position you're playing your songs in?" The old man looks up and says, "Mais, da sitting position, what's da matta neg, you can't see my chair?
I rest my got dam case!
Mr Greezy that last post was a classic. So thanks. In all the excitement I hope folk did not miss that Mr. Greezy and Mr. Jerry appeared to reach an agreement, albeit short lived. Priceless stuff this.
Just one more tid-bit of info. Jamey Hall mentioned this ever so briefly back in 2010, and he wasn't real sure about it from the way his comment sounded, and no one could comment to the better or give the solution. Garney Arsement also dropped a very little information about the 4th position here and there. I might have even seen AJ type the words "Dorian Scale" or "Dorian Style" = 4th Position??
If you want to try playing a (4th Position) song in the key of "D" on a "C" accordion. That song would be "Pine Grove Blues" aka "Hey Negresse" by Nathan Abshire.(Nathan Abshire the trash man?? Who'da thought) And yes, you can play it alone without the accompaniment guitar. I heard my gramps play it alone many times when I was a kid. Absolutely possible! You play your own accompaniment on the base and treble side between the melodies. The base side is played in slow two step or blues mode like "Grosse Erreur". But who's going to show you how to do it without a video??
No body showed me, I pecked it out on the accordion after listening to the original recording over and over until I finally was able to play and sing it good enough to sell it. To be familiar with the rhythm of another blues song called "Sugar Bee" really helps when it comes to pulling off "The Pine Grove Blues" more easily. Now you know more than you knew before. How's that for "rabble" and "rambling"? Does that do it for ya?! DO YOU FEEL THAT Jerry, Jeff, and Larry?! (Said with emphasis and hips being thrust forward and back in a forceful pumping motion.) LOL
Oh, and thanks for the support Mr Guy. I really appreciate it.
Can also play the mardi gras song in D on a C accordion. I learned it that way before I knew anything about positions or keys.
On a C Accordeon:
1st position: C
2nd Position: G
3rd Position: D
4th Position: A
5th Position: E
Chronicle means to record or write what others are doing. IE an historic recollection.
Or do you mean to offer some instruction/enlightenment/assistance to a lone player trying to learn Cajun Accordeon ?
1st Position: C
2nd Position: G
3rd Position: F
4th Position: D
5th Position: Don't Worry About It. Not enough songs can be played accurately in this "theoretical" position. It doesn't exist yet. Only in Greezy McGill's deep subconscious mind.
Why that order..?
makes no sense in conventional music theory.
Take as an example the diatonic 10 hole harmonica which is tuned like the 10 button diatonic accordion. (Icidentally both invented in 1829)
1st position... C
2nd position G
3rd Position D
4th position A
5th position E
Why because it ascends in 5ths
What is the logic to your position naming and function ?
It may just be worth your next 20-30 minutes to actually listen to the video below. It will help you to weed out more of the BS of this modern life and society just a little more than you could before you watched the video.
Some of the Recording studios and local Cajun radio stations are doing much of what is mentioned in the video. Overplaying the living hell out of not so deserving, mediocre or just plain non talented artist and their music, and leaving the truly great older music on the got dam shelf to be forgotten.
To expand on Jerry's comment about "Ye Yaille".
THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF CAJUN MUSIC! - Words and Music to 247 Original and Traditional songs. A treasury of Cajun Music collected, transcribed, and annotated by Raymond E. Francois. "Ye Yaille Chere" is a comprehensive collection of music from southwest Louisiana from 1900 and earlier to nearly 1970. This book is a valuable reference for anyone interested in Cajun music and the Cajun culture. Tunes, turns, chord changes, and words are documented in manuscript for more than 240 selections, ranging from old songs which have nearly been forgotten to the classic songs of Cajun repertoire. Variations of many songs are included, and songs are cross-referenced to original and other recordings and to related songs. Reminiscences by Cajun musicians and extensive notes provide a musical and cultural setting for the selections
Barny and Noble $40
Jerry, how valuable would you say the song book is? You own one. Is it worth my time or any Cajun musician's time and money to purchase one? Do they have the French to English translation? You really need to let go and let us know what's stored in that mind of yern. Are you having trouble getting a word in edgewise with all of my incoherent ramblings that only have 1% value thus far? I can back off and let you have the soap box. I'll just occasionally "chirp" in with my 2 cents. I just have so much stuff in my head man! If it don't get typed on here, my head explodes. :face_with_head_bandage:
Jun 6, 2018 - 5:48PM
Re: Hey Jerray!
"To expand on Jerry's comment about "Ye Yaille"."
My pedantic mind can't hold back....
The word would be "EXPOUND", not "expand".
Amazing, like minds and all that.
Watched that last night. !!