Karen Tweed – Quotes & Comments

“…your beautifully lyrical lightness of touch is all that is needed.” Paul Armfield


“If I had to pick one person who has influenced my music the most it would have to be accordionist Karen Tweed, she was one of the first accordion teachers I had and continues to help and inspire me. I knew she was a great teacher when I was younger but I didn’t realise she was probably the best teacher I’d ever have until much later!” Hannah James


“You are a special talented jazzy funky performer, but I suspect you knew that already!” A fan


“…I didn’t know you could get a whole orchestra in a box like that… amazing!”

the Verger, Niton Parish Church, IOW


…the Sandy Shaw of the accordion. Hank Wangford


What Tweed has done is further liberate the piano accordion from the oompah band stereotypes and demonstrate the instrument’s full melodicism. Irish Echo


…always been fantastic to work with, in every respect, and brought countless pleasure to hundreds and hundreds of rural audiences, deeply reliable, always superb musically, inspiring in performance, uplifting in your engagement with the audience, generous to a fault in a myriad ways. Sue Roberts, Artservice Director


She was delightful to work with and amazing to listen to! Boyan Boiadjiev, Lotus Festival


…the stuff with Timo, it seems to me, is quite remarkable and something truly original and valid in any sense. John Neilson


Midsummer May Monday


“Each piece is exquisitely arranged, a hallmark of May Monday music, and this pair pays homage to traditions from Stockholm to Spanish Point while putting their own unmistakable stamp on the music. Dip into this broad and deep pool of musical possibilities, and see what tickles your fancy.” Folkworld, Ireland


“…this exquisite album, which is a hymn of praise to midsummer and to music itself.” Fiona Talkington, Finnish Music Quarterly


“Once again Karen & Timo have produced an album full of surprising, richly exotic muic and magnificent musicianship…” Sean Laffey, Irish Music Magazine


Merrie Melodies (volume 1)


“Karen Tweed is one of the most creative characters to frolic round the fringes of traditional music, and one of the few to become a central figure in the evolution of more than one country’s tradition.” Alex Monaghan, The Living Tradition


“Her playing style is far from the generic ‘oompah’ often associated with the accordion; these tunes are delicate and lyrical, and I already plan to learn a couple myself. This is Vol. 1; give us a moment to imbibe and relish this lot, then send over the next!” Jon Bennett, Shirefolk


“…that book of tunes is like an explosion of wild flowers in a concrete jungle or someone riding a unicycle against the traffic on a jammed up motorway… I love it and the tunes.” Colum Sands, musician


Essentially Invisible to the Eye


I forgot to say how much I enjoyed listening to the new CD. It’s beautifully atmospheric. I would think that it would be a lovely way for an audience to immerse themselves in that sound world. And also very good programming for specialist music and chamber music festivals. Philip Parr, Parrabolo


Many thanks for the new album I think it’s the best one you’ve made and one of the best anyone has made. I first listened without reading any of the notes and thought…it’s like you and accordion are two very special friends, totally at ease in each other’s company, comfortable to talk about anything or leave gaps in the conversation… and you have invited music round for a visit and music feels so happy and at home with you both!

Colum Sands


…since it arrived, I’ve been reluctant to listen to anything else… Tweed has cooked up something warming, comforting and sustaining… this is a dish to be enjoyed; clearly prepared with love, there’s enough to go round everyone. Pull up a chair and, as my gran would have said, fill your boots. ***** Oz Hardwick, R2


It’s 41 minutes in her company, by the flickering fireside, sharing a photo album.

Andrew Cronshaw, fROOTS


At the end of Essentially Invisible To The Eye, which comes all too soon, I realised that I’d spent over 40 minutes just listening to one woman and her accordion, not something I’d have believed I’d have done at the start, now that does prove what a talent Karen Tweed is.

Neil King, FATEA


…and none of this lovely music falls short of expectations. I honestly can’t remember the last time I enjoyed folk-music as much… Paul Pledger, Allgigs.co.uk


…Tweed also describes her solo work as ‘a casserole’ and she’s right… it has been cooking a long, long time, is rich with flavours from many ingredients and is served from one pot – her mighty 72-bass Pigini piano accordion. **** Julian May, Songlines


…beautifully presented and judged… an album to which we’ll return.

Iain Anderson, BBC Radio Scotland


Her music is descriptive, engaging, not as wild or as jarring as some, but still with a range of tones which can express all the emotion of a full and varied life… There are no excesses here, nothing to frighten the horses, but there is a great deal of warmth and feeling, and a musical life shared for a brief period. Living Tradition


…the kaleidoscopic array of tunes are precisely executed, with enormous technical skill and dynamic sensibility, which is always animated with character and emotion – passion, verve, poise and sensitivity. Kevin T Ward, Shirefolk


…it made me smile from beginning to end and I loved your version of Edelweiss. As usual your playing is impeccable – a great mixture of technical ability, brilliant ideas and sheer musicality! Simon Thoumire


Feedback from The Big Experiment


You were beyond fabulous. Inspiring beyond our dreams. The Big Experiment


Karen was an inspiring Guest Tutor on our annual weekend, “The Big Experiment”. Inclusivity should be her middle name, as she found ways of involving all levels of instrumentalists and singers in her daily group sessions. We also appreciate her enthusiasm for learning FROM us and her appreciation of the beauty of Welsh music.


I started drawing up a list of my personal highlights, but realised there were too many. However, the crucial element has to be the fantastic energy, communication, encouragement, warmth and sheer musicality of Karen Tweed. Very special. I think she was a catalyst for not only the experimenters but for all of us tutors to raise our game! A great team.

Neil Browning, tutor


Karen’s workshops were fantastic … Karen Tweed’s sessions were great … Roedd Karen yn ANHYGOEL (= Karen was incredible) (roythe Karen un an-HUG-oil, should you wish to say it too!) Anonymous comments from participants’ feedback forms


Karen’s contribution to the event was so inspiring and so challenging; it was wonderful to see the effect on the whole course of being so energised and stretched – to break rules, to try out new approaches, to dare to have a go, and to make music for the sheer joy of it. Her combination of commitment and charisma is a powerful mix and fueled our most high-energy Big Experiment yet! Blanche Rowen, Administrator, trac/organiser, The Big Experiment


Having Karen Tweed as our Guest Tutor in 2010 has been a delight.  She set some real challenges for us all – instrumentalists and singers alike – and we rose to meet them.  What a feeling of achievement!  And she was also just plain fun throughout the whole weekend.  Come back soon, Karen! Siân Thomas, Director, trac / organiser, The Big Experiment


Other Feedback


For our part it was very exciting having Karen be part of the project – made all the more enjoyable because the whole process, including our contact with you at the outset, was so friendly and so understanding of our limitations! Hope to meet up with you sometime and to work with you all again next year – fingers crossed for a bigger barge! Arts Barge Project, York




Representation | Different Strings Music Agency

lorraine@differentstrings.co.uk | 0117 904 1870 or 07929 135744