Links - Makers
A maker of high quality melodeons based in Brittany, France. This site shows all his models but also has some really useful links to French melodeon pages and a good explanation of melodeon tablature and many good tunes in this format.
Based in Manchester UK, Doug Briggs builds accordions for Irish style players.
Another Italian accordion factory with a range of melodeons. Rarely seen in the UK - the instruments are fairly similar to the Saltarelle range. Played by Roger Watson of Boka Halat.
(Pronounced COR-DEEN) Cairdin is the Irish word for accordion! Started in 1996, this Irish maker produces hand-made boxes designed for B/C style primarily but also make D/G models.
From Recanati in Italy, Castagnari are known for their high-quality, sweet sounding melodeons. Considered by many to be the best. Played by Andy Cutting, Tim Van Eyken, Riccardo Tesi, Sharon Shannon.
From Castelfidaro, Italy, this accordion factory produces a nice range of loud, punchy, strongly built melodeons which are ideal for gigging ceilidhs or playing for morris dancing. Played by Simon Care of E2K, Tickled Pink and The Morris On Show.
is an accordion builder and teacher in Ikaalinen College of Crafts and Design.
is a renowned accordion builder based near Nantes in western France.
Hohner is a massive German based international company making most instruments, historically it is an accordion company. The Pokerwork, Erica, Corona and 1 row models were for a long time the only melodeons freely available in the UK. Played by .... well everyone, but notably John Kirkpatrick, Pete Coe and Tony Hall.
Maker Peter (Stormy) Hyde is based in Adelaide, Australia. He makes a range of boxes using Australian timbers and the designs are unique. Notably his latest design, the Flutina is a beautiful small single voice instrument which is currently being played by Sharon Shannon, other models played by Tris Glover of The Chipolatas.
Based in Calabria (the toe bit of Italy). Completely dedicated to producing custom built Organetti - the 1.5 row 2 bass boxes as used in Calabrian/Italian traditions.
Makes customised Dutch style instruments. A very specific style of instrument, with a very profound and deep toned bass.
Small Italian accordion factory which make 2 or 3 models suitable for the UK market and many other larger instruments. They are typical Italian boxes.
Formerly made a range of melodeons designed for the English market but now only make stringed instruments. Their melodeons are real luxury items, they feel a bit like Castagnaris to play but have a much punchier sound more suited to English style playing. Unfortunately no longer in production.
Norwegian builder of diatonic accordions of unrivalled quality, custom made for the uncompromising pro.
Cajun accordion builder.
Genuine Saxony made squeezeboxes. The Wiener (Vienna) Harmonika is a sweet but powerful little 2 row - and check out the Bandonikas and Mini Steyrishes for something different.
Very individual instruments, with beautiful casework. A variety of useful configurations such as 2.5 row models with either 19+6 or 21+4 layouts, or 3 rows with 16/18 basses.
Although historically very popular especially for their Irish B/C instruments, the Paolo Soprani factory no longer makes instruments. The name is owned by Suoni who continue to make some branded instruments but they are not the same as the fondly remembered older instruments. Formerly played by Bob Cann.
French melodeon company. Instruments very popular in the UK, Ireland and France. The boxes are generally well made although the reeds take an above average time to bed in and sound sweet. The general sound is harsher than a Castagnari giving a bit more edge to the music. Played by - Brian Peters, Chris Parkinson, John Spiers, Tim Edey, Luke Daniels, Mairtin O'Connor.
An Italian accordion factory - their melodeons are very similar in design to Saltarelles, but they sound completely different.
How many other melodeons can you plug in headphones and practice in to the wee small hours?? Yes it's a midi melodeon. Self contained with internal speakers and battery supply. Can be transposed in to any tuning and has hundreds of sounds to choose from!!!! The website is worth a look!
Frans Van Der Aa
Dutch maker who produces beautifully finished continental style melodeons - they are generally on the larger side and sound fantastic. The bigger boxes are more suited to row-crossing than playing up and down the rows due to the weight, but he also makes a mean 1-row 4-stop full of power for the push-pull minded!
Karel Van der Leeuw
A wide variety of very distinctive Art Nouveau or Cajun styled boxes- with some extremely odd but useful note and bass layouts available.
Based in the former East Germany and formally branded Gallotta, Weltmeister instruments are made by the Harmona company in Klingenthal. Similarly priced to Hohners, these are good German instruments.
Yves Gauber, custom made diatonic accordion maker from Moussoulens in southern France. Also does repairs and tuning.
Wesson Accordion Company
Maker of 'Clipper' one-row melodeons.
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