The Accordion Idol – Justin Martin

You know that old saying “You either have it – or you don’t”...that’s true about a lot of things for sure – but perhaps none so much as when it comes to playing the accordion.  To play it at all requires unbelievable hand to eye coordination, with each hand doing something different simultaneously.  Matter of fact I heard Fergus O'Byrne (Ryan’s Fancy) explain it at this year’s NL Folk Fest much “like patting your head and rubbing your belly at the same time”.  Suffice it to say – it’s not an easy instrument to play let

Justin Martin Age 5

Justin Martin...back in the day!

alone master.  BUT....when Justin Martin picked up the accordion at the age of was clear he “had it” well in hand.

And so with 10 years of honing his skills to his credit  – playing for parties and local concerts – he took the ferry to Bell Island and took home the Harry Hibbs Memorial Trophy* – making him the youngest ever Accordion Idol.

It was a great pleasure to have met him in his home town of Flatrock, NL...and to get him to play for us.  Despite the misty rain off the ocean and the cold winds that blew into the town gazebo - he graciously, humbly and effortlessly demonstrated just exactly why he won.  Justin Martin – you are very cool and very talented - and we salute you!!! SABS

For more information on Justin visit the JUSTIN AND JEREMY MARTIN FANCLUB Facebook Page

(FYI – Jeremy is Justin’s twin brother)

*SABS Note of supreme noteworthiness -

Harry Hibbs

The Late Great Harry Hibbs

Harry Hibbs

(1942-1989) was a native of Bell Island, NL. He made many contributions to the evolution of the accordion in the Newfoundland traditional music scene. He has left behind a great legacy and been lovingly referred to as "Newfoundland's favourite son".  The Accordion Idol Trophy was named in honour and memory of  Harry Hibbs and his affinity for the instrument.


  1. Hello, I am with a local flamenco group, and we need an accordion player for upcoming performances in the fall. Is this something that would interest you? Thanks for letting me know!

    Comment by Martine Durier-Copp — March 29, 2016 @ 5:14 pm

  2. Are you related to the Martins from Grates Cove.

    Comment by Walter Meadus — September 29, 2019 @ 5:38 pm

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