If you’re new to Slovenian popular folk music (from Slovenia) or American-Slovenian style polkas (from North America), you might get confused between the two (I sure did), so in this post I try to clear it up with the sort of information I’d love to have had available several years ago.
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.
The sound of Slavko and Vilko Avsenik’s ensemble (Slo: Ansambel bratov Avsenik, Ger: Slavko Avsenik und seine Original Oberkrainer) had many moving parts that contributed to the legendary sound which evolved throughout their career spanning from the 1950s to the 1990s. Technique, band members, advancements in sound engineering, arrangements by Vilko Avsenik and combinations of instruments evolved with each album and each decade. This includes the evolution of each accordion that Slavko Avsenik recorded and performed with.