accordion festival photos


Wild Musicians Put "Big Squeeze" on Orange County

By Craig MacDonald

Costa Mesa, Orange County Market Place --The incredibly energetic music from accordions, fiddles, guitars and drums permeated the air to the absolute delight of thousands of people at "The Big Squeeze," the First Orange County Accordion Festival, held in conjunction with the Orange County Market Place in Costa Mesa Sunday.

Folks of all ages, sizes and talents stomped their feet, kicked up their legs and swung their partners in Zydeco/Cajun style at the wildly popular musical event.

Grammy Nominee Lisa Haley & The Zydekats brought down the house with their pulsating, rhythmic sounds that captured the spirit of the day and the hearts of onlookers, some of whom leaped up and danced like there was no tomorrow.

A rollicking grand time was had by all, who appreciated the enthusiasm and all-out performance of the fun and fantastic entertainers and their audience.

Also, "Raving Polka," some of whose members got their start in Moscow 23 years ago, showed their pizzazz with dynamic folk music that brought cheers from the overflow crowd. Their dynamic delivery, including Russian dance, brought an electricity to the air that commanded attention. No wonder their music has been featured in major motion pictures and on television.

Event Creator Jill Lloyd and her team amazingly were able to bring many of the best accordionists and music players in the World together for this truly memorable day. We hope it becomes an annual tradition at the widely-popular Orange County Market Place, which is open on Saturdays and Sundays at the OC Fair & Event Center (

There were many other noteworthy acts at the festival, including Fontenot and Pappion Louisiana Band, who played scrub boards and other fascinating instruments.


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