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A Primer For Accordion Beginners

Get an accordion. The cheaper the better because they all sound the same.

Do not tell anyone what you have done. It will only cause them to worry.

They will find out soon enough.

Take the accordion out of the case and strap it on. It is better if the accordion rests on your chest instead of your back but, for the first few weeks, it doesn't really make that much difference.

For sounds to be produced, three things must happen. The third is the most important:

1. The bellows must be moving in or out.

2. One or more of the keys or buttons must be pressed.

3. All potential weapons within a one mile radius must be collected and secured.

The buttons on the left side are chord buttons. The "C" button has a dimple or nipple so you can find it without looking. This is a safety feature. Before it was invented, thousands of accordion players suffered painful and sometimes disabling injuries, much to the delight of the general public.

Never use more than three buttons. "Professional" accordionists appear to be using lots of buttons but they are actually just desperately trying to find the stupid "C".

By the way, "Professional" means they have learned to smile while they do it.

Play the black and white keys. The high notes are at the bottom and the low notes are at the top. That arrangement isn't supposed to make any sense. Accept it.

Note: If you find the high notes at the top and the low notes at the bottom, you have either put the accordion on upside down or you have tried to repair it yourself. If the former, turn the accordion over. If the latter, pack your accordion up with hundreds of dollars and mail it far away for a long, long time.

Continue playing until someone begs you to stop or threatens your life, whichever comes first.

Put the accordion back in its case, order an accordion t-shirt and wear it to your state's Accordion Fest.

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