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By Gerry Jones of Liverpool Country Dance Band

Most people understand the right-hand side of a piano-accordion. The black and white notes are much the same as a piano, organ, or electronic keyboard.

All those buttons on the left-hand (or BASS) side are a mystery to most people, and they cannot imagine how players know where to put their fingers. Here are a couple of points to get you started.

You can count them if you like; this gives you the general SIZE of the accordion. The biggest normal accordion has 20 buttons in each of six rows, so multiply these numbers and call it a 120-bass accordion. It also has the most piano keys on the other side. It is also the heaviest!!

The rest are smaller, with less piano keys, less buttons - and less weight.

Popular numbers are 96-bass, 72-bass and 48-bass.

Anything smaller than that is nice and light, but very limited. OK for a child, or to start with, but you would soon outgrow it, and get fed up with how little you can do with it.

You cannot see the buttons, so you must find your way by touch.

You start by finding MIDDLE C, just like in your piano–lessons. This is half-way along, in the middle of the SECOND Row -almost the furthest row from your wrist. You can only tell it by FEEL – there is something different about it. In most cases, all the other buttons have smooth rounded tops; this one in “dished-in” or concave.

Once you have Middle C, you can find your way to the other Letters. “Father Charles” will help you.
F C G D A E B so F is to the left of C while G is just to the right, and so on.






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