An accordion is a box-shaped musical instrument , played by hand. It is also known as a squeezebox. It is one of the oldest music instruments used in playing Western music.An accordion is a box-shaped musical instrument , played by hand. It is also known as a squeezebox. It is one of the oldest music instruments used in playing Western music. It is played by compressing or expanding the bellows whilst pressing buttons or keys , causing some valves to open , which allow air to flow across strips of brass or steel. These strips vibrate to produce sound inside the body of the instrument. Often , an accordion can be played as the sole musical instrument in a performance. This instrument has been used very commonly in old folk music in places like Europe , North America and South America. There is great variety in accordions. In each part of the world , the design of an accordion differs. The French , Irish and Italian makes of the instrument are the most popular. In all three countries , the accordion was used in folk , country and classical music , throughout most of the 19th and 20th centuries. A lot of traditional , non-Western music styles from around the world also incorporated the accordion into their music. However , after 1980 , the significance of the instrument has waned , due to the rising popularity of other instruments such as the electric guitar , keyboard and drums. Now , squeezeboxes are once again gaining popularity. Productions of filmmakers like Cirque du Soleil , albums of bands like Those Darn Accordions , and some rock bands have brought the accordion back into the minds of music lovers.A piano accordion is unique because it incorporates a bass mechanism not used in most musical instruments. The piano accordion was first played in German-speaking regions , and then spread over Europe. It is a fully chromatic instrument with a varying number of piano keys , depending on the size of the instrument. Piano accordions come in varying prices – from the extremely expensive ones meant only for professional use to the very cheap ones. The placement of keys on a piano accordion is somewhat different to that on a normal one. These accordions are used frequently in jazz music. The make up of the instrument is very complicated. Some accordions have one row of buttons; some have two rows of buttons; and still others have three rows. Those with one row of buttons are often used for playing Cajun , Quebecois , and Irish folk music. These buttons play the diatonic scale. A two-row button accordion typically has 21 treble buttons , and two sets of treble reeds. A three-row instrument has 31 treble buttons and two sets of treble reeds.Taking proper accordion lessons is essential if you wish to play it well. There is a flood of instructional DVDs in the market , but unless you take a one-to-one tuition with an experienced player , you will not be able to learn the fine nuances of the instrument. However , you should decide upon the type of accordion you wish to play , and the cost involved , before engaging an expert. Once you have learnt well , the joy of playing the instrument well has no parallel.