Polska efter Axel Axelsson
This Polska efter Axel Axelsson is interesting in that we get the tune from a non-instrumental musician. Axel Axelsson was the son of an outstanding fiddler in the province of Södermanland by the name of Melker Andersson, who died in 1936. He tried to teach Axel to play the fiddle, but he was not a good teacher, and Axel tired of it, and never became a fiddler.
He had a good musical ear, though, and remembered his father’s tunes, whistling them for Olof Andersson, a folkmusic collector in 1936.
So, the tune was preserved in this way and has become a favorite slängpolska in Södermanland.
On YouTube I found a video of a Japanese group playing this tune. It is an unusual combination of lead fiddle, second fiddle, accordion, cello, wooden flute, and silver flute. The lead musicians do have the flavor of the Swedish tune, though, and it is definitely danceable. Listen to it here.
To the left is a photo of the group of Södermanland fiddlers I got this tune from in 1974.