SPECIAL GUEST: JOEY MISKULIN
Joey Miskulin is one of Cleveland-Style Polkas’ greatest pillars of musical talent. In his most memorable role, Joey, the child prodigy discovered by Chicago’s Roman Possedi, became Frank Yankovic’s featured accordionist at age thirteen, beginning an association that would last over thirty-five years. Frank’s insistence that Joey be included in a Columbia recording session cemented Joey’s decision to make music his career.
Broadening his experience, Joey became in the 1970’s became a studio musician and producer, performing on bass, piano, banjo, guitar, organ, accordion, and as a vocalist. All the while, Joey maintained his love affair with Cleveland -Style Polkas, playing and recording with Yankovic and Cleveland -Style orchestras. In 1978, Joey opened Miskulin’s Lounge, reviving a venue that housed some of Cleveland’s most famous polka clubs. Teaming up with the legendary Lou Trebar, Joey formed the Mis-Tre Orchestra. Joey hosted various TV shows, including his very own Polka Time U.S.A. In 1985 Miskulin produced the first Grammy-winning polka album, Frank Yankovic’s 70 Years of Hits. Among Joey’s many Compositions I Wanna Call You Sweetheart was designated a Great All-Time Polka Hit. Joey moved to Nashville in 1987 for his other love, Western music as Joey the Cowpolka King.
STEVE MEISNER BAND
STEVE MEISNER is a multi-talented musician, entertainer, composer & arranger. He began playing the accordion at the age of 5 and has been earning a living in the music business since the age of 16. Steve’s family has a rich musical heritage and he is a second-generation full time working musician. His father, the late Verne Meisner, had a successful music career for over 50 years. Steve’s brand of music is extremely versatile and appealing to a wide audience. He has made a name for himself by taking the music he grew up with from his father and adding his own imagination and feeling. He has brought his brand of traditional American polka into the 21st century with a fresh spark & swing while retaining the roots of this music.
KLANCNIK AND FRIENDS
The Klancnik and Friends Band is quickly becoming one of the most dynamic and energetic groups in all of polka music. Specializing in the “Cleveland-Style” of polkas, the band’s goal is not only to help preserve this genre, but to further evolve it’s distinctly American roots. The KNF Band also represents a much needed movement in the polka field, presenting a group comprised entirely of younger, talented musicians who are completely committed to playing and advancing this unique art form. The band’s sound can be very aggressive at times. It has been described as a “Polka Powerhouse” and as being a “Polka Inferno.” One critic wrote: “The band totally rocks, with a sound that I would call Neo-Slovenian.” In addition to their hard driving polkas, the group also performs several other styles of music that compliments their instrumentation and individual abilities.
David Austin Band
David Austin started playing the accordion at age 10. Shortly after that he began performing with his dad, Mike Austin, in the Russ Wilson Band. Since those earily beginnings, David has gone on to perform and record with a large variety of bands including Roger Bright, Denny Anderson’s International Main Street Polka Band, Walter Ostanek and countless others.
David has lead his own band, releasing his first recording, Party Time Polkas, at age 25, followed by two more releases, It’s a Good Day and his latest, Sweet Polka Dot. Together with Cliff Penniston on banjo and guitar, Craig Ebel on drums and Don Hunjadi and sax, clarinet and flute, this Cleveland-style band has performed at multiple festivals, now adding the Illinois Polkafest to that list.
You are certain to enjoy this energetic, exciting band playing some of your favorites together with some classic sounds of Kenny Bass, Johnny Pecon, Frank Yankovic and many others.
BOB DOSZAK ORCHESTRA
Bob Doszak has been entertaining and supporting Polka music most of his life which is 60 plus years of playing the accordion! Born in 1946 in Joliet, Illinois to parents of Slovenian and Polish descent. His natural heritage helped instill his style of music. Bob grew up in Joliet where he had resided until relocating to Arizona recently. The neighborhood where he grew up consisted of mostly Slovenians, Croations and people of Polish descent. Across the street from his childhood home was a tavern that always echoed of polka music. That is where Bob was first introduced to polka music. At the age of 6, Bob started taking accordion lessons. At the age of 7, Bob had his first performance with none other than America’s Polka King, Frank Yankovic. With the support of his parents, by the age of 8, Bob was the featured accordionist at the Baby Doll Polka Club in Chicago and began playing private parties in Joliet and the surrounding areas. Around the age of 14, Bob started his own band, and within a few weeks the band found themselves playing seven nights a week. Bob and the band continued this all through Bob’s high school years.
Bob had been the key organizer of the annual Illinois Polka Festival in which was held in Oakbrook, Naperville, and Schaumburg Illinois, for 27 years. Just last year he passed the festival down to his son, Chris, to continue the annual tradition. Bob plays a wide variety of polkas, waltzes, and old-time American standards, and is known to play a few sing-along medleys.
EDDIE RODICK ORCHESTRA
Eddie Rodick has been wowing audiences with his exciting accordion-playing for 40 years. Eddie was born in Mannheim, Germany, to his parents Edward Rodick, Sr., who was serving in the U.S. armed forces, and Dorothy Menzel Rodick.
Eddie’s father nurtured young Eddie’s interest in polka music by buying him an accordion and taking him to polka dances. The youngster was inspired by the polka stars of that time, such as Johnny Vadnal, Eddie Habat, and Ray Champa.
Eddie’s first band in 1960, was called the Champagnes. He put his music career on hold when he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1966. In Vietnam, Eddie received a wound in the throat from shrapnel that exploded from enemy mortars. The result is Eddie’s distinctive speaking voice. On his return in 1969, Eddie teamed up with Bob Oblocki. He also married Brenda, with whom he had three children.
In the early 1970s, Eddie started “Eddie Rodick and the Goodtime Boys.” The group took the polka world by storm, recording an album, and appearing regularly on TV’s Polka Varieties Show, and was together for eight years.
Eddie formed a new band in the early 1980s. In the mid-1990s, Eddie developed a new band. Drummer Kim Skovenski and Eddie Rodick III joined the band. Eddie recorded three more albums, including “Polka Sweethearts,” winner of the 2007 Recording of the Year. His band was named Band of the Year in 1990, 2002, and 2007, and Recording of the Year in 1990. Eddie has played throughout the U.S., in Spain, Holland, Canada, and Mexico, with his unique style of accordion playing.
JACK TADY & THE TADY BEARS
Jack Tady has kept a pulsating rhythm in polkas since he was fourteen years old. As a bandleader and drummer, Tady may have changed the name of the band and the musicians in it, but the beat has always been steady.
He started out in 1952 with Jack Tady and the Russ Slovenes, the Jack Lads/Polka Lads, and Jack Tady’s Swingin’ Laddies. In 1973, the name changed to the Jack Tady Bears, the JTB, and now Jack and his Tady Bears. But the title Tady likes the most is “Western Pennsylvania’s Polka King.” Radio listeneres of Bill Seles’ Polka Show voted Tady the honor in 1968. He was thrilled that Polka King Frankie Yankovic was on hand to crown him.
Slovenian polka music was the music of choice in the Tady household while Jack was growing up. He and his friends would gather near the stage of the former West View Park in Pittsburgh each summer to listen to their polka idols – Frankie Yankovic, Kenny Bass, Eddie Habat, Johnny Vadnal and Walter Ostanek. Those musicians were his inspiration to start a polka band of his own.
Jack was delighted to play on five recordings with the Frankie Yankovic band, and in a polka medley on Walter Ostanek’s Grammy-nominated album of 1997. Tady added polka radio host duties to his repertoire in 1982. Jack Tady’s Polka Place has been on the air at WEDO 830AM, McKeesport, for 18 years.