Thursday, June 26, 2008
No accordion sites are complete without the Polka. So here it is; an American traditional...
Polka is a type of dance, and also a genre of dance music. It originated in the middle of the 19th century in Bohemia, and is still a common genre of Czech, Polish and Slovenian folk music; it is common both in Europe and in the Americas. In classical music, many polkas were composed by both Johann Strauss I and his son Johann Strauss II; a couple of well-known ones were composed by Bedřich Smetana and Jaromír Vejvoda, the author of Škoda lásky ("Roll Out the Barrel").
The name comes from German word Polka, meaning "Bohemian Dance" which comes from the Czech word polka, also meaning "Bohemian dance", which itself is lent from the Polish polka, literally meaning "Polish woman", fem. of Polak. The word may also be an German-originating alteration of Czech pulka, meaning "half." Due to its name it is often mistakenly attributed to Poland. It should also not be confused with the polska, a Swedish 3/4-beat (help·info) dance with Polish roots; cf. polka-mazurka. A related dance is the redowa. Polkas have a 4/4 time signature