Mike Schneider started playing
the accordion at the age of six after hearing America's
Polka King Frankie Yankovic perform live for the first time
at a parish festival in Milwaukee, WI. Mike's father, Paul,
planted the seeds of polka early, pulling his accordion out
of the closet from time to time to entertain his only son.
So if you were wondering how a six-year-old boy can go from
accordion player to an acclaimed Wisconsin polka band
leader, now you know!
The Mike Schneider Band has been
entertaining audiences throughout Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa,
Michigan, Minnesota, and Ohio since 1996. Since that time, Mike and
his band have been nominated for 17 polka awards from five
separate organizations. In 2009, they took home the Band of
the Year Award from the Wisconsin Polka Hall of Fame after
eight nominations in the category since 1998. Mike also
holds the honor of being one of the youngest people ever
inducted into the Wisconsin Polka Hall of Fame at the age of
18 in 1997.
The Mike Schneider Band's
travels have taken the group to such places as Cleveland, OH
for Tony Petkovsek's annual Thanksgiving Weekend Polka Party
in 2006. In 2008, they ventured out on the Caribbean to take
part in their first Polka Cruise aboard the Carnival Valor.
Mike and his band have appeared numerous times at
Oktoberfest in New Ulm, MN, plus Summerfest and Rainbow
Summer in Milwaukee,
WI, and Motongator Music Festival in Wallace, MI. The Mike
Schneider Band has even entertained audiences including
James E. "Chip" Carter, son of former U.S. President Jimmy
Carter, and J.C. from the band NSync.
Mike and his band are no
strangers when it comes to major media attention, either. In
1997, Mike appeared on the front-page of the Milwaukee
Journal Sentinel regarding his nomination for the Wisconsin
Polka Hall of Fame's Horizon Award, which he would go on to
win the following week. Mike has also been featured on 94.5
WKTI's long-running Reitman & Mueller show, Wisconsin's
Morning News on News Radio 620 WTMJ, the Daybreak Report on
Today's TMJ4, and on the Food Network for Food Nation with
Bobby Flay, an appearance he made along with his entire band
In 2008, Mike Schneider took
his first steps into what has become a successful venture
into children's music with his Pint Size Polkas project. His
goal is to bring polka music to a new generation of fans
while educating them on a number of core curriculum topics.
For more information about this project, please visit
When Mike isn't on the road, he
enjoys spending time with his wife and two children,
designing websites, and playing golf. A big dreamer at
times, he's still waiting for his invitation to play Augusta
National. Stay tuned for news on that story as it develops!