Mudcat Café message #1065206 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #42513   Message #1065206
Posted By: Bob Bolton
03-Dec-03 - 10:09 PM
Thread Name: Junior Button Accordion
Subject: RE: Help: Junior Button Accordion
G'day Charcloth & all,

(I was avoiding the Australian mid-summer Christmas weather by stopping atop the Blue Mts when this thread had its first run, so I didn't get to respond.)

I think some of the responders may have missed the point that this is very small button accordion - just seven treble buttons, two basses and an air-valve. I first bought one of these back around 1964 for (Australian) 3/7/6 ... about US$9, in those days. It was a handy thing to take on hiking trips, as it neatly slipped into an outer pocket on my old pack - but I already had a 10-key button accordion in 'German' style.

Some of what I told Rick, way back, still applies to this little one, but the button numbers I quoted won't be right ... and there are now two distinct types of 'baby' Hero/Tower/? models. The older ones had the 'key' notes (invariably C) on the third and sixth keys. There was a slightly different arrangement of notes at the bottom (typical of all Chinese accordions and mouthorgans) to allow playing in (A)minor ... and not much of the second octave.

The more recent models start lower - usually with the key note on the first, fourth and seventh buttons. This gives you an almost complete two octave range (missing the high 'b' that would be on button 8).

These do give you more range in the key of C major ... but can stop a bit short in A minor, which has to start from the draw A on button 3.

D (Dorian) minor works well - starts on the draw note of buttons 1 or 5 and alternates between Dm (outwards) and C major (inwards) ... but you don't have the minor chords to accompany!

Myxolidian (often used in Scots music ... and blues!) starts on the button 3 push G ... and is a fairly major made.

Hero / Tower / ? (Chinese factory that inherited the former Hohner Far East factory & tooling after WW II) also made a compact 9-key "button" accordion with white 'piano' keys ... but sounding in button accordion fashion, with different notes in and out. One of these is a much more practical starter for working on a wide range of styles ... but I haven't seen a new one in decades!


Bob Bolton