Slovenian-Australian accordionist · Learning material

Phillip Nadvesnik

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10 songs by Rudi Bardorfer [Sheet music] [PDF book]

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).

Old Timers Polka – J. Pecon & Wishbone Polka – E. Habat [Sheet music]

This my transcription based on a performance by two prominent Cleveland-style (Slovenian-American style) figures; Walter Ostanek (Canada) and Eddie Habat (USA) at Lojze Slak’s 30th anniversary concert in Slovenia, 1994. They performed 2 shortened Cleveland-style polkas: ‘Old Timers Polka’ by Johnny Pecon and ‘Wishbone Polka’ by Eddie Habat. You may notice that the first part of ‘Old Timers Polka’ resembles a Slovene folk song (the name escapes me at the moment).

This arrangement is limited to the recorded performance and may not include all parts of the original songs which I have linked to below. I’ve tried to capture how it was played on this video, instead of the original recordings, including a few nice runs by Ostanek. The bass runs are also loosely based on Slak’s bassist Franci Sever as he played it in this video (below).

Sheet music:

📝 Sheet music pdf (F)

Recording of ‘Wishbone Polka’ – Eddie Habat on
Recording of ‘Old Timers Polka’ – Johnny Pecon on
Performance of these 2 songs in 1994 by Walter Ostanek and Eddie Habat with Lojze Slak’s bassist and guitarist Franci Sever and Milan Ferlež
How I tried to play this several years ago

Med narcisami – Narzissen Walzer (V. Muženič) [Sheet music]

This waltz by Vito Muženič (Dobri Znanci, Ansambel Vita Muženiča, Avsenik’s 1990s studio ensemble, Hišni ansambel Avsenik) translates to ‘Among the Narcissus’ or ‘Among the Daffodils’.

Sheet music:

📝 Sheet music pdf (G) + 📝 Sheet music pdf (A♭)

Proti Kopru – Nach Koper (V. Muženič) [Sheet music] [Tutorial video]

This polka by Vito Muženič (Dobri Znanci, Ansambel Vita Muženiča, and clarinet player in Avsenik’s early 90s studio ensemble) translates to ‘To Koper’ (Koper is a port city in Slovenia, and its Italian name is Capodistria).

Preview tutorial video:

‘Learn to play’ package:

📝 Sheet music pdf (C) + 📹 slow tutorial video (C)

Sheet music only:

📝 Sheet music pdf (C)

Ansambel Vita Muženiča

Rekel mi je (B. Kovačič) [Sheet music] [Tutorial video]

This is a great waltz by Boris Kovačič, which featured vocalist Stanka Kovačič, and translates to “He said to me”.

Preview tutorial video:

‘Learn to play’ package:

📝 Sheet music pdf (F) + 📹 slow tutorial video (F)

Sheet music only:

Cover with Jerry from Slovenia

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