Rudi Bardorfer (1933-2000) is one of my favourite Slovenian composers and accordionists, who recorded several albums with his trio, Ansambel Rudija Bardorferja and vocalists Vokalni Kvartet Zvonček, throughout the 1950s to 1970s, before having to exile to Switzerland due to political conflicts. The national Slovene (Yugoslav) broadcaster at the time had stopped playing his music, the ensemble disabanded, and his songs had almost become forgotten to time, with the exception of the 1 RTV Ljubljana album and several Jugoton and Radio-Televizija Beograd records that have remained in homes of Slovene families. In his new life in Switzerland and later Austria, he continued to write songs for Slovenian ensembles, run a recording studio, and even bought a small Italian accordion factory (among other achivements).
I’m very grateful to have been offered the opportunity to contribute to Denis Novato’s second book, published by Musikverlag Bogner in Germany. This book contains 10 Novato compositions, in both Griffschrift notation for Steirische Harmonika (diatonic button accordion) by Hubert Klausner (zillertal-noten.at) and standard notation for accordion by myself. It is accompanied by a CD of these 10 polkas and waltzes.
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There are some great books I’ve been reading (albeit slowly in Slovene) that I’d like to share with you, about Slovenian popular folk music, and more specifically Slavko and Vilko Avsenik who started and shaped the entire genre of ‘narodnozabavna glasba’ (Slovene for popular folk music) or ‘Oberkrainer’ (German name of the genre derived from the German name for the Gorenjska region in Slovenia). This extends to other influential figures who further shaped and pioneered the music such as Lojze Slak, and I’ve included 3 accordion and guitar technique books at the end of the list as well. I’ve also outlined where these books can be bought, and whether they have translations available.
It’s probably evident that I’m a fan of Andrej Toplišek’s work, which also extends into educational content for accordionists in the Slovenian/Oberkrain style. Released by Alpengold Harmonikas, “Stücke für Akkordeonprofis” which translates to “Songs for accordion professionals” is aimed at accordionists who want to improve their skills, to be able to play more technical songs. I thoroughly am enjoying this book and wanted to spread the word to other accordionists wanting to improve their skills particularly in this genre.