Remembering Art Van Damme, America’s Foremost Jazz Accordionist

Born in the tiny town of Norway, Michigan, Art Van Damme was not expected to become a serious American Jazz musician. Classically trained as a pianist and motivated to become a professional musician, Art was a performing musician by age nine in a local theatre in upper Michigan. His family moved to Chicago when he … Continue reading Remembering Art Van Damme, America’s Foremost Jazz Accordionist

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A History of Blues Accordion

ACCORDION By Edward M. Komara The accordion reached its peak popularity with African American musicians between the end of Reconstruction (1865-1877) and the early twentieth century. Clarence Tross, a West Virginian musician, reported that it was ''mostly the colored man'' playing accordions in that period, and a contemporary from coastal Virginia remembered that accordions were … Continue reading A History of Blues Accordion