Glossary: Musette Waltz

Our collegue Jan Soete from Belgium has kindly provided us the following information concerning the Musette Waltz:

In the 19th century many “Auvergnats” (people from the Auvergne region in France) migrated to Paris. There they played their “musette”, which were actually  “Cabrette” (a form of bagpipe typical for the Auvergne) for dances in Cafés. Their repertoire also consisted a waltzes, which for this reason were called Valse Musette.

Later they were joined by Italian immigrants who brought their accordions and integrated them into the “Bals Musette”.

Over time the Cabretty dissapeared from the music scene. Instead accordion and clarinet were taking over. One possible reason for this might have been the peculiar and not really “well-tempered” tuning of the Cabrette.