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Squeeze This! : A Cultural History of the Accordion in America



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Univ of Illinois Pr
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This is the edition with a publication date of 3/15/2012.

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No other instrument has witnessed such a dramatic rise to popularity--and precipitous decline--as the accordion. Squeeze This!is the first history of the piano accordion and the first book-length study of the accordion as a uniquely American musical and cultural phenomenon. Ethnomusicologist and accordion enthusiast Marion Jacobson traces the changing idea of the accordion in the United States and its cultural significance over the course of the twentieth century. She focuses on key moments of transition, from the introduction of elaborately decorated European models imported onto the American vaudeville stage and the instrument's celebration by ethnic musical communities and mainstream audiences alike, to its later denigration and novelty performances by the likes of "Weird Al" Yankovic as well as a recent revival within contemporary cabaret acts and pop groups such as They Might Be Giants. Loaded with dozens of images of gorgeous instruments and enthusiastic performers and fans, Squeeze This! A Cultural History of the Accordion in Americarepresents the accordion in a wide range of popular and traditional musical styles, revealing the richness and diversity of accordion culture in America.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Introductionp. 1
Advent of the Piano Accordionp. 15
Squeezebox Bach: The Classical Accordionp. 50
Squeezebox Rock: The Rise and Fall of the Accordion in American Popular Culturep. 91
Crossover Accordionists: Viola Turpeinen, John Brugnoli, and Frankie Yankovicp. 116
New Main Squeeze: Repositioning the Accordion in the Music Industryp. 145
Out of the Closet: Reimagining the Accordion in American Popular Culturep. 173
Conclusionp. 207
Notesp. 221
Indexp. 245
Color illustrations appear after pagep. 90
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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