The accordion is an instrument of music that is part of the group of wind instruments. It has a bellows closed by boxes at its ends, which house different keys or keys.
In the box that is taken with the right hand, the accordion has a fingerboard that can have buttons (in the case of the chromatic accordion) or keys similar to those of the piano (in the so-called piano accordion). With the left hand, the musician can play other buttons that serve as accompaniment chords and for bass sounds.
Unlike other wind instruments, the accordion does not require the person to blow to generate the sound. The accordion has a mechanism that, when the performer closes or opens it, allows air to pass through its structure and propel various reeds. The keys make it possible to choose what type of sound is obtained.
The origins of the accordion go back to the first decades of the 19th century. Its development led, over time, to similar instruments although with different characteristics. In this context, it is common for many people to confuse the accordion with the bandoneon or the concertina.
One of the reasons why this confusion takes place revolves around the relative complexity of the accordion compared to other instruments, especially regarding its design: given that a large part of its keys are hidden under the hands of the musician, the The public cannot appreciate the instrument in its entirety, and it is common for it to ignore certain basic details of its structure, something that does not happen with the piano or the violin, for example.
With respect to the bandoneon, it is another wind instrument, from the group of free reeds, which is related to the concertina (defined in the following paragraph). Its appearance is rectangular and its timbre is very distinctive: whoever has had the opportunity to listen to these three instruments does not usually confuse the sound they produce. Curiously, the original German term is spelled bandonion, and it was in the Río de la Plata where the i was replaced by an e, although in everyday speech people tend to pronounce it as an i.
The concertina, for its part, is also a free reed instrument, and its creation has two important milestones: its first appearance took place in the year 1829, but almost two decades later a patent was published with certain improvements in its design. It usually has a series of buttons at each of its two ends, which are pressed in different directions from the accordion: in the concertina they are parallel to the bellows, while in the accordion they are perpendicular.
Although some claim that playing the accordion requires advanced musical knowledge, there are also those who invite anyone who is curious about the instrument to venture into learning. The type of accordion most used by beginners is the piano, mentioned above.
The accordion is currently used in a large number of musical genres, such as merengue, cumbia, chamamé and cueca. Mexican Julieta Venegas is one of the most popular accordionists. In Argentina, “Chango” Spasiuk and Antonio Tarragó Ros are two outstanding musicians who play the accordion.
It should be noted that, according to the dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE), in some countries the concept of an accordion is used to name the notes that a student hides in an assessment in order to access information without the teacher seeing it . Accordion, in this case, is synonymous with chop or machete, depending on the region.