The novelty of the accordion
consisted in playing a predefined harmony (chord) with one single button
on opening the bellow and a second one on closing.
After the privilege for building accordions ended in 1834,
the name and the instrument became very
well known and the great commercial interest for the new instrument
among other builders was based on the ease of its use, specially for the
dance music. This made the accordion very attractive, particularly for
non musicians. But the fact that the harmonies were fixed was criticized
by some people. Several constructors introduced switches to shut off single
tones from the chords, others, like C. F. Uhlig placed the single notes
in groups that way to easily combine them to chords, this
in contrast to the usual systematic
distribution of the notes like keyboard instruments.
The fact that the
bisonoric action of a button was preserved and chords still were
playable, let people like Höselbarth, Zimmermann
or Band continue to call it accordion.
selection of tones to form individual chords for several tonalities,
was the enhancement of Band's advertisements in 1844 for his
40 and 56 voice accordions.
In many countries the term accordion is also used for concertinas.
a distinction came up when later versions of Band's instruments with
many voices were labeled Bandonion.
Similarly Leclerc in Paris presented a melody instrument he called
mélophone and which was often confused with a
concertina despite of its
guitar shape. A special valve control allowed action
of the same voice on opening and closing with the invisible bellow.
It was perhaps A. Debain of Paris to use the term
concertina for the first time in 1839, before he sold his rights to
J. Alexandre for the construction of
concertinas or piano-concertinas. R. Blagrove used an instrument of
Sir Charles Wheatstone (1802 - 1872) to
publish in 1839 a Verdi melange ``...for the
Concertina with an accompaniment for the piano forte''. Regondi presents
in 1840/41 his Wheatstone instrument, which he had bought in 1837
as a mélophone but
in 1846 calls it concertina.