Sunday, May 15, 2016

Cleveland-style Polka Hall of Fame (5/14/2016)

Saturday, May 14, 2016
It was supposed to be a rainy day, which helped us to decide to visit a museum that is only open a couple days per week: The National Cleveland-style Polka Hall of Fame in Euclid, OH.
Euclid Veterans Memorial (1953, designed by Frank Kosich, Sr)
with an M103 heavy tank from WWII (KSS)
Former Euclid City Hall (1938-1989), now home to the
Greater Cleveland Slo-pitch Softball Hall of Fame (2000) and
the National Cleveland-style Polka Hall of Fame (2002) (KSS)
Halls of Fame sign (KSS)
Cleveland-style polka has its roots in Slovenia where the Bohemian polka was a dance craze along with the Austrian waltz in Europe in the late 1800s to 1900s. A large Slovenian immigrant population in Cleveland brought their folk music and with influences from jazz, Tin Pan Alley, and country and western, they developed their own style of happy dance music. Local bands began traveling throughout the US, and later, exposure over the radio and television made this style of polka the recognized popular polka of the nation.
Part of the collection of accordions, including one from
the Hojer/Hoyer Trio that was the first polka band to spread
Slovenian-made accordion
Intricate designs on the accordion
The Bohemian polka music is characterized by use of the accordion, and the Cleveland-style adds the banjo.
A clever donation box
Oak sculpture from Slovenia
Oak sculptures (1969) by Jovanovic
One of the Hall of Fame members is
Father Frank Perkovich, who brought the
Polka Mass to Cleveland; his recording of a
Polka Mass was sold out, and he took the Polka Mass
on tour, including celebrating a Polka Mass
at St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican
Slovenian music display
Detail from the display on
Birth of the Cleveland-Style
Detail from the display on
Polkas Top the Charts: The Golden Years
The Frankie Yankovic display
(Frankie Yankovic is the only name we both recognized!)
Detail from the display on
Sounds of the 60s and 70s
(the flyer lists 12 tours following different
bands/orchestras to Slovenia and Europe!) 
Tamiko with an accordion (KSS)

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