DAC President Susan
I was born in 1951 in the
Bronx, New York, and I listened to lots of records, and watched Myron Floren on the Lawrence
Welk Show. I remember seeing an accordion player at a family party when I was 8 years
old, and loved the way the man walked around the room with it, and the powerful sound it made,
and the flowing bellows were grand. I nagged my parents for 2 years for an
accordion, but my parents bought me a piano when I was ten, with the promise that I would
practice often. We lived in an apartment building, and I played so often that I disturbed
the neighbors. I did buy a gently used accordion when I was 12 years old for $200, and I
am still playing it today. I love to play pop music, rock and roll, ethnic music, and
I took lessons at the Joe Biviano Studio in Manhattan, and was proud
to ride the subway all by myself. I earned some trophies in competitions when I was
16 and 17 years old. I majored in music at Lehman College in the Bronx. I
have used music in all of the jobs I have had. I taught music in nursery school,
Sunday school music, and led choirs where I worshipped, and at my job. I also play
at assisted living centers in the area. I arranged for our club to play at the
Kirkwood Highway library several times. Some of our members also played at a winery
recently, as well as talent night at the Newark Library.
I was happy to join the Delaware Accordion Club in 2001 and meet many
wonderful players. I look forward to attending the meetings and hearing different
styles and genres of music. I took over the duties of secretary and treasurer a few
years later. I am happy to become the second president of the club, and hope to see
more people joining, continuing our meetings, and playing for the
DAC First President (In Memorium)
Oberly, DAC President of 17 years, passed away September 29,
I am the oldest of 5 children. My mother played the piano and some
accordion. Through her encouragement, I started playing the accordion at age 7. My
instructor, Mrs. Elaine Sullivan of New Castle DE, would come to our house once a week
charging $2.85 a lesson. Mrs. Sullivan was with the Stancato National Accordion School of
New York and I performed with their band. She stopped teaching when I was 13 years old
due to the death of her husband.
I was drafted into the army in 1966 and served 3 years in Okinawa Japan. While in the service I
studied Kempo Karate and earned a First Degree Black Belt. Upon returning to the states, I
earned a Brown Belt in the form of Korean & Japanese Karate. I started teaching martial
arts and became known as Karate Joe.
In 1985 I became a Third Degree Master Mason with the Lafayette Lodge #14 in Wilmington DE. I
also received the Scottish Rite's 32nd Degree also in Wilmington DE.
With raising two daughters as a single parent, my career with New Castle County as a Tree
Surgeon, and my interest in Antique Cars, it wasn't until 1995 that I began to play the
accordion again.I began taking private instruction from Paul Packo who played the accordion
professionally for 60 years. He also filled in for Myron Floren on the Lawrence Welk show.
After attending an accordion festival in 1996, I joined the Acme Accordion School in Westmont
NJ. I took lessons from Stanley Darrow and also played in the JR Westmont Accordion Band. I
then began taking lessons from Ed Tafelski of Minquadale DE. He played as a boy and continued
in the Air Force Band during WWII. He performs at various functions professionally and has
raised a family with his accordion skill. He still gives instruction to myself and others
In the last 24 months, I have bought at least 50 accordions and placed them with people
interested in taking accordion lessons. In October of 1998, Joe Alexander and Stanley Darrow
founded the Delaware Accordion Club and I was appointed President. We started with six members
and have grown to approximately 50 members. We meet informally every third Sunday of the month
at the Jam n' Java Coffee House owned by Patrick Matic in Newark DE. We play accordions, share
music, news and events and encourage newcomers to perform open-mike.
For the past two years, I have competed and won at the American Accordion Musicological Society
Symposium and continue to receive instruction from Ed Tafelski. Additionally, within the last
year I have created an accordion museum that was featured in the CrossRoads section of the
Wilmington News Journal (4 May 2000). Many accordions have been privately donated for the
preservation and appreciation of the instrument.
Most recently I joined the Closet Accordion Players of America who are dedicated to improving
the image of the accordionist. I also perform at open-mike sessions at the East End Cafe in
Newark DE and perform at New Castle County Christmas parties, birthdays, weddings and car
shows. Recently, I have created a travelling show-tell and play.
My future plans are to continue advanced lessons and play in a more professional capacity. I am
looking forward to sharing my travelling museum with churches, schools and other organizations.
This fascinating instrument has enjoyed a rebirth in this new century and I am proud to be
called "Accordion Joe."
Meetings are held on the third Sunday of each
month (except holidays) from 2pm-5pm.
April 15 - DAC 20th
Social time begins at 1:30pm. Performances begin at 2:00pm.
*Meetings are subject
to cancellation due to holidays, weather, etc.
To confirm club meeting
or other DAC
inquiries, call DAC President Sue Shertok at 302-369-4018.
Where to Find
River Club Apartments,
7807 Governor Printz Blvd.
Claymont DE 19703
From I-495, take exit for US-13 toward
you enter the parking lot, please drive
around and park in the LEFT side of the
building. Enter the
building through the front patio doors. You may stop at main entrance to
drop-off your accordion, equipment, etc.