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CFAC Member of the Month
August, 2003

Joseph "Sonny" Tirpak
 
Sonny's love for the accordion began at age 4 when his parents bought
him a 12 bass and he started lessons. . . . .
 
He progressed to a 120 bass Hohner, and at age 7 a Super 5
Cordovox which he still has today.
 
Sonny's first gig was New Year's Eve, 1961.  He played at
the American Legion Club in his hometown of Summit Hill,
PA.  Sonny's group was a replacement for a "no-show" band
and he was paid $14 plus a free platter of food.

When he was 12, Sonny formed his first group
"Tirp-C-Chords" -- a combination of his family name
(Tirpak) with "Tirpsichore" the Greek goddess of dance.   
 
Sonny performed at Orlando
Senior's Day
 
Sonny played on the Helen G. Stern (left
photo, lower deck, 2nd from left) in
Atlanctic City N.J. for tips.  Other cruise
ships include the
Chandris & Brittanis.
Through Sonny's Aunt, Lawrance Welk  
requested a recording of his band after
she had written to Mr. Welk.   In return,
she received a letter signed from Mr.
Welk himself ! .  
 
Atlantic City, N.J.     July, 1964
 
The accordion is just one instrument Sonny
plays,,,, he has played the trumpet,
xylophone, guitar and French horn in his high
school band.
Sonny played in the Pocono Mountains for
several seasons at the Split Rock Lodge,
Holiday Inn, and Henning's hotel.
 
1965
 
Sonny played engagements for the 101st
Airborne Group.  At a reunion in Holland, he
played  for the Queen in her convention hall.   
He received a kiss !!  He also played at a
convention in Wildwood NJ to raise funds for
the 101st Airborne Memorial in Arlington, VA,
and at a private party in Dusseldorf, Germany
for a professor who had operated on his
father's war wounds as a German prisoner of
war.
 
Sonny,
As a CFAC member, you are always there to help promote
the accordion and entertain the membership.   We
appreciate your efforts and wish you continued musical
success !!!  

 

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