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Tom Brusky | Positively Polka

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World: Polka World: Polka Moods: Mood: Fun
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Positively Polka

by Tom Brusky

Positively Polka is an album of original, energetic polkas and melodic waltzes written and performed by Tom Brusky, an award-winning musician from Milwaukee, WI. Some of the genre's finest musicians and vocalists make guest appearances.
Genre: World: Polka
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. I'm in Love
2:53 $0.99
2. Kerler Acres Polka
2:50 $0.99
3. Secret Affair Waltz
2:37 $0.99
4. Match Point Polka
2:27 $0.99
5. Crystal's Balls
2:44 $0.99
6. Dance of the Black Cats
2:58 $0.99
7. Root River Polka
2:19 $0.99
8. Golden Dollar Polka
2:42 $0.99
9. Autumn in the Meadow
3:55 $0.99
10. Corn Scramble
3:01 $0.99
11. Going Back to Switzerland
2:59 $0.99
12. Fine and Dandy
2:26 $0.99
13. Wind Lake Waltz
2:34 $0.99
14. Cold Spring Polka
2:25 $0.99
15. Layton Avenue Polka
2:11 $0.99
16. To Fall in Love with You
2:54 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Positively Polka is such a simple title, but its simplicity is meant to convey that this is not big band, country, Latin-American, or pop standard recording. As much as I enjoy writing and recording in all those different genres of music, I’ve returned to my polka roots for this latest production.

Positively Polka is a compilation of polkas and waltzes that I’ve written over the past few years. Some of the songs were originally written to be used as product demos for virtual instruments that I sell. The rest of the songs were written specifically for this album.

A few of the titles have stories behind them:

“Kerler Acres Polka” - In 1849, the Kerler family of Bavaria immigrated to the United States and settled on 200 acres of land in western Greenfield, Wisconsin. In 1904, one of the Kerler sons built the house in which my mom currently resides. The Kerlers remained on the land until the 1950s. Today, the neighborhood is officially recognized by the Greenfield Historical Society as Kerler Acres. (Coincidentally, Cold Spring Polka, Layton Avenue Polka, and Root River Polka are also named after features found in Greenfield.)

“Crystal’s Balls” - ALL NAMES, CHARACTERS, AND INCIDENTS PORTRAYED IN THE SONG ARE FICTITIOUS, NO IDENTIFICATION WITH ACTUAL PERSONS, LIVING OR DECEASED, IS INTENDED OR SHOULD BE INFERRED. My lawyer made me say that, but it’s true. I wouldn’t dare take the chance of writing such a goofy, nonsensical song like this for a real Crystal from Iowa... unless I had no doubt her sense of humor were as delightfully warped as mine. :)

“Dance of the Black Cats” - I named this song after my three rescue cats: Snickers (8), Arthur (6), and Viola (6).

“Going Back to Switzerland” - Have you ever wondered what Alpine Volksmusik would sound like if the words were sung in English? Well, now you know! I was originally going to write the song in German and call it "Zurück nach der Schweiz", but having the lyrics sung in English is what makes this very European-sounding song unique.

“Fine and Dandy” - This polka was originally written to be used as a product demo, so it intentionally uses familiar-sounding elements of some classic Yankovic polkas. The title was inspired by one of the finest and dandiest musicians to come from the Yankovic era, Jeff Winard. He is not just one of Milwaukee’s most respected bandleaders, but he is also a mentor and friend to many of us in the business, and so this song is dedicated to Jeff.

“Autumn in the Meadow” - Just like I wrote the polka "I’m in Love" to fit Mollie Busta’s vocal range and style, I created this song from the ground up specifically for Abby Broeniman to sing. No one else could put as much emotion into this song as Abby. The forty-piece ensemble strings (1st & 2nd violin, viola, cello, and double bass) send the melody soaring in a way accordions never could. And since I was arranging for strings, I thought it would be fun to create a big ending like the kind you’d hear on an old Sinatra recording.

“To Fall in Love with You” - While I was writing and arranging this song, my mind kept hearing orchestral instruments. That wasn’t my original plan, but whenever I tried simplifying the arrangement for polka instrumentation, the song seemed to lose its way. So I deleted the accordion track and rearranged the song from scratch with brass, strings, and woodwinds. The song instantly took on a Disney-like flair, and that’s when I knew I had to make it a vocal duet with Mollie Busta. Like Mollie, Betillo Arellano knew exactly how to approach the song and sang it beautifully.

CREDITS --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Tom Brusky - Accordion, drums, bass, piano, and virtual instrumentation
Additional musicians: David Austin, Ed Klancnik, Nathan Neuman, Eric Noltkamper, and Cliff Penniston
Vocalists: Betillo Arellano, David Austin, Abby Broeniman, Mollie Busta, and the Polkasound Studio Singers



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