Accordions Irish music

Button Accordion key Features

As the name implies, a button accordion is an accordion in which the melody or treble sides of the board are composed of buttons and not piano keys. This is one type of accordion. Franz Walther, a Vienna resident, is believed to have made the first button accordion in 1859. There are many styles and configurations of these accordions. However, they all have single-note buttons on one side and chord and bass buttons on the opposite side.

In many European countries, and in other countries where Europeans settled, button accordions are used. We offer a wide range of new and used button accordions. Our workshop ensures that your instrument is in top condition when it leaves our shop and is ready for you to use.

Chromatic or Diatonic

The Chromatic system is preferred by both Irish and Scottish musicians. These instruments have rows that are only one semitone apart. This allows for all the sharps as well as flats to be available. The Diatonic button accordions are very popular in many countries. They are used primarily for playing popular music and folk music as well as modern offshoots.


You can use the treble keyboard with any key. However, the bass will limit the amount of chords that you can create with the treble keyboard.
While 12 bass models offer more flexibility, many traditional players do not use them at all. This tuning offers a nearly 3 octave range for models with 23 treble notes.


B/C is the most popular tuning. It is easy to play in D/G on this tune by simply moving across the rows. You can use the same fingering to get the keys E and A from a C#/D box, or you can just play it in D. Three rows in B/C/C# give you more options and more bass notes. John Kirkpatrick uses three-row chromatics. The B/C is the standard for Irish ceilidh bands.

Other Reed Instruments

A free-reed aerophone musical instrument family includes a melodeon and diatonic button accordion. It’s a type of button accordion in which the melody-side keyboard has one or more rows, each row producing the notes of a single diatonic range.
Most often, the buttons on the bottom-side keyboard are arranged in pairs. One button sounds the fundamental of a chord, and the other the corresponding major or minor triad.

Check out this button accordion, if you would like to know more about piano accordion.

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