Annemarie Timmons escaped to Kansas City from her native Communist East Germany in 1958. In 1969, she got a job as a waitress on the Country Club Plaza at the Plaza Royal Restaurant.
She had always loved the accordion and her husband had bought her one for a wedding present when they married in 1957, but she had never quite learned to play it. But now was the time to learn.
Some friends invited her to play for a party at the Berliner Bear, a German restaurant on Wornall. She was a big hit and the proprietor asked her if she wanted to play every weekend. She quit her waitress to and became a full-time musician, playing the accordion and singing German folk songs. She moved to Emile’s European Deli on the Plaza where she played weekly for 18 years.
Annemarie never studied music, can’t read music, and never played in a band, yet she managed a twenty-plus year career as a musician, brought joy to thousands, and has many fans around the world.
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