The Free-Reed Review
Critiques of Compact Discs, Books and Music Scores
review date: February 1999
total pages: 32
subscription price as of March 2007 for four issues:
(address updated on March 2, 2007)
In 1936 the first issue of Accordion World was published in New York by John Gerstner. The magazine proved extremely popular among United States accordionists and, with few exceptions, was published monthly until 1962. After a period of some 25 years, John Bonica of Portland Oregon began a magazine with the same title which was originally funded by the Northwest Accordion Society. Bonica's Accordion World continued from 1989 until 1994 or so. (The series of articles in The Free-Reed Journal written by Mr. Bonica titled The Accordion: A Back Breaker? were originally published in that magazine.)
Now, David Keen of England has started yet another Accordion World magazine. (This publication is obviously different in at least one way, the front and back covers (as well as many advertisements) are printed in full color). David Keen is no newcomer to the field of magazine publication; he was editor for many years of Accordionist, the publication of The National Accordion Organisation of the United Kingdom.
The Winter 1998 issue of David Keen's Accordion World contained a page of news of mostly U.K. accordion happenings (Accordion World Newsround), followed by a page of concert & festival schedules, including competitions and festivals in Great Britain, Russia, Germany, Holland, Denmark and Finland. Several articles were devoted to news from local U.K accordion clubs and orchestras (Wandering Wilf's Writings and Travels, Active Sheffield Accordion Club, Latest UK Accordion Clubs Scene, White Horse Happenings, etc.), and one article contributed by Accordions Worldwide webmaster Wayne Knights was about the West Auckland Accordion Orchestra (New Zealand). I'm sure that Mr. Keen would be delighted to print news from all over the world. All readers have to do is send press releases to him.
Friends of The Classical Free-Reed, Inc. would undoubtedly be delighted to read the two articles about classical accordionists in the pages of Accordion World, since classical music is naturally our forte. One short article described Owen Murray's performance of the premiere of John Webb's Concerto for Accordion commissioned by the Southern Orchestral Concert Society. (It is a pity that the author did not mentioned the name of the orchestra and conductor as well!)
Another article described the concert and masterclass given by concert accordionist James Crabb. (Crabb's CD recorded with his duet partner Geir Draugsvoll was reviewed in the pages of The Free-Reed Review.) A third article provided news from the Coupe Mondiale Festival held in the Netherlands.
Of special note was the technical article titled Computers for Music targeted toward new computer users. The author, Trevor Meek (senior lecturer at Portsmouth University), gave his advice on choosing a computer and applications for scoring/notation, MIDI music and digital audio.
I congratulate editor/publisher David Keen and I recommend this magazine for all accordion lovers.
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