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Register now for Button Box Camp 2016!

The button box accordion is an attention grabbing and traditional instrument that can present considerable obstacles to those who wish to learn to play it. As a traditional folk instrument, many people learn to play by ear and are already familiar with the tunes they wish to play.

Depending on location, some students are able to find an experienced player and teacher who will introduce the them to new tunes and provide some sort of fingering diagrams (tablatures) to aid in playing the instrument. Typically, this tablature notation provides very little, if any, timing requiring the student be very familiar with the tune in order play it properly. Tablature systems are almost as varied as the instructors themselves.

Another popular notation called Griffschrift also requires the player to learn a unique notation system that can only be applied to the button box accordion. It demands that the student already be familiar with the stylistic components of a piece, and knowledgeable of technique to convey those elements, as they cannot be taught by this system due to its limitations.

The philosophy behind button box camp has been that as long as one is willing to learn to play the button accordion, one might as well spend that effort to learn to read conventional music notation. This will ultimately reward the button box player with a wealth of available music, and the ability to play with other musicians, including brass and woodwinds such as clarinet, trumpet, and tuba.  Since 1993, Camp has assisted button box players of every level and ability, beginner to advanced. Come join us for a fun filled week of button box playing!

JoeSmiell