Nada Lewis

Voted Best Accordion Teacher in the East Bay Express’s Best of Bay Area Poll 2010!

Portraits of Nada Lewis and her accordion, in San Francisco, Calif. on Saturday Sept. 20, 2008

“A top bay area accordionist, Nada Lewis is the most versatile musician in her field. Nada is well-known as a French, Italian, German / Polka, Klezmer / Jewish / Israeli, Irish, Gypsy / Roma / Balkan, Russian, Romanian, Greek accordionist and international musician — solo or with her ensembles. She is also a booking agent for entertainment for special events and is a wedding music band provider for receptions in California, the West Coast, and beyond.” 

The accordion has melody, harmony and bass line. It is wonderful for weddings, parties, fairs, international or other theme or multi-cultural events. It is perfect for conveying so many different moods: continental, sweet romantic, danceable (especially in combo), relaxing background music, upbeat, even downright goofy with appropriate costuming. An accordion sounds great solo or with other instruments, duo, trio or larger. I’d love to provide great music for your event!

I am Nada Lewis, and I play many different instruments — keyboard, percussion, wind and strings. The accordion is my main squeeze (it breathes!). I’ve been a professional musician for many years, and the kinds of music I choose are pieces that move me, that make my heart sing. I love European folk music, the dance tunes, the love songs, the hot Roma (Gypsy) melodies, the Balkan rhythms, sweet Italian and French continental favorites, romantic ballads and klezmer music. I also play polkas, schottishes, tangos, horas, and Greek and middle eastern music, jigs and reels. All of it is so much fun to play!

I can really let loose playing the accordion — when I pick it up anything can happen! I love the way the music plays me, extending out through the accordion, how its energy comes up from the earth, through my body, into my arms and down into my hands, into the mechanism of my instrument to radiate as harmonious sound, sweet and mellow, or exciting and wild. It all moves me deeply. If I am transformed by it, I know my listeners will be as well. If I am having fun, you will have a ball!

I have many accordions of different sizes and from various eras, some with rhinestones and flower designs on them. Some are antique and have beautiful old world sounding voices. Others are more modern and handle like sports cars.

I very much enjoy performing, jamming, teaching and sharing my music. The music/dance camps and international music festivals are a blast! I feel totally blessed that playing music is such a fulfilling part of my life.

There are a number of bands I have been instrumental (pun intended) in starting and leading or co-leading, including the Silver String Macedonian Band, Balkan Pacific, Hatsegana, Panacea, Alpenrose Polka Band, Taverna Greek Band, Tziganya (aka San Francisco Balalaika Orchestra), the Good Times Ceilidh (Irish) Band, and our own klezmer (Jewish) ensembles. I have played with Troika Balalaikas, the Klezmorim, and California Klezmer orchestra. Recently I formed a quartet that plays Israeli and Sephardic music, as yet unnamed.

I have recorded several albums with some of the above groups, as well as my own accordion (& friends) CD called Nada Lewis “Hot, Sweet & Wild.” Here are some sound samples from that CD:

1. Romska Sota – Macedonian Rom (cocek)
2. H’Ostropatz – (geamparal/ruchenitza)
3. Green Hills/Cherkezkata – Scotland/Bulgaria
4. Tantz as Freilach – Klezmer
5. Yanka Devoika – Bulgaria
6. Grey Eyes – Ukraine (polka)

Portraits of Nada Lewis and her accordion, in San Francisco, Calif. on Saturday Sept. 20, 2008

Most of my engagements are weddings, receptions, parties, theme fairs, and corporate events. I also play for festivals, concerts, and club gigs — as a soloist or with some of the musicians. I perform with vocalists, violin, clarinet, guitar, mandolin, oud, string bass, hammered dulcimer, percussion, flute, the tuba in the polka band, or the trombone in the klezmer group. I would love to play for your event!

Hire an accordionist

Musicians’ fees vary according to several factors such as playing time from start to finish, number of musicians contracted, driving time/distance to the site, parking/unloading situation, complexity of any sound systems brought in for you, whether or not there needs to be a special rehearsal, etc.

As a booking agent with Folkloric Productions I know and can connect you with many other excellent accordionists, musicians, bands, dance shows, and even DJs.

Give me a call and I will be happy to answer your questions, give you more information, availability, fee quotes, ideas and suggestions, and to arrange for you to hear demos or come to a live audition.

Folkloric Productions Booking * Nada Lewis, Accordionist * Lessons * World Music CDs * Soundtracks