Sarnia accordionist familiar face under Blue Water Bridge

A Sarnia accordionist found that practicing his accordion under the Blue Water Bridge in Point Edward helped him through his grief.

Dave Woods, 81, started playing his 70-year-old accordion on the waterfront four years ago, shortly after the death of his wife.

“People liked it right away. Some clapped and they really encouraged me to keep going, which I did every time I went down. I only missed six or seven days in the whole summer of 2019,” he said. “It lifts me up, lifts me up, people love it and it helps lift me up.”

Woods said he learned to play the accordion by ear as a teenager, but had never played it in public before. He plans to continue heading to the waterfront to share his music.

“I had people come and park their cars there, with the windows closed, and some of them, listening to me play, they really encouraged me, they really enjoyed it. I got better than I was before, and I was surprised myself.”

Woods said a few people have joined him over the years, including an accordion couple and a guitarist.

“Accordion, you play the melody, and a lot of people say ‘We haven’t heard it in a long time, accordion, you’ve never heard anyone play it.'”

Woods, a retired member of UA 663 Plumbers Pipefitters & Welders, said some days he really enjoys going to the beach, and other days he has to force himself to do it.

File from Stephanie Chaves

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