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Bellow Shake – Intro

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4OKolOKE-iY

I have RUN all over the Internet and I am REALLY having a hard time finding ANYONE that shows how to bellow shake CORRECTLY. The link above is the BEST – but again he goes SOOO fast. It is hard to see what he is doing. Tom Collins is the best I have found. Now let’s break down his steps.

  1. DO NOT PULL OUT AND IN – the technique is DOWN AND UP.
  2. Take your hand out of the strap and then put it back in position outside the strap.
  3. Right Hand – Hold a chord – then Firmly PLANT your left hand palm and do a DOWN stroke – Skin stays put and wrist bones move down then up in a ROBOT hand shake style. (with a distinct STOP and the bottom of the down and top of the up)
  4. Now put your hand back in the strap and repeat. Think small short strokes.
  5. Master an even up and down stroke. There will be NO PIVOT POINT.
  6. NOW add a bass note on the down stroke – and NO bass or chord on the up stroke.
  7. Now add a chord on the the down stroke – and NO chord on the up stroke.
  8. YES – this can create a creep out of the bellows – so you need to master a strong up stroke without adding volume to the up stroke.
  9. I catch myself doing a slight shift of the top of my accordion to the RIGHT – to allow gravity to help the up stroke. (it even adds to the visual “effort” the audience THINKS I am taking to do the shake!)

Now try this example – and only do 4 measures at a time – making sure your bellows are not creeping out.

NOW – lets change the beat to triple shake.

  • This time do an ADDED POP or accent on the first down and the 4th up.
  • Take your hand out of the strap and then put it back in position outside the strap.
  • Think small short strokes and SAY TRI PO LET – with a slight accent on TRI
  • Master an even up and down stroke. There will be NO PIVOT POINT.
  • NOW add a bass note on the “TRI” stroke – and NO bass on the up and next down strokes.
  • Now add a chord on the the Up stroke (next “Tri” stroke) – and NO chord on the next down & up strokes.
  • NOW – the creep out of the bellows is NO MORE – the bass and chord hitting on the down then the up stroke corrects any creeping.

Now try this simple “in 4” bellow shake examples – and only do 4 measures at a time – making sure your bellows are not creeping out.

link – Beer Barrel Polka Chorus Bellow Shake

Link – Minka bellow shake

 

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