Wife Ivanka Slak:
"I think very highly of him as a musician. He’s extremely enthusiastic about music, hardworking, persistent and also unusually critical towards himself and others. He’s got a very strong sense for Slovenian people and for all the values enriching our lives in our small country. From certain point of view he is an iron man who makes his ideas come true 100%, if he really believes in them, naturally. I’ve always admired his endurance and will of steel. I could say he’s lived every moment of his life for the music, so there hasn’t been any time for holidays or vacation. Thank God we have Trškagora where Lojze has been able to forget about his worries at least for a while.
I have plenty of nice things to say of him as a husband, too. He’s always kept his promise. Being his wife I definitely spent a lot of time alone. After our wedding I’ve asked him several times: “Are you leaving again?” It definitely was a hard time for both of us. But with time more and more people have been looking for him, inviting him to play. It meant a lot to Lojze. We would never dream he’d have so many performances, spending so much time away from home. But I’ve always believed that everything will turn out OK and that he would come home to his family healthy. The most difficult time for me was when the children were still small and Lojze was gone for two months or six weeks. I guess it helped that I’ve also been working at the time. However, I’ve accompanied Lojze on many occasions when he has been performing at festivals and concerts around Slovenia. I’m glad that he’s never had any accident while travelling and that we’ve all remained healthy and content.
As a father Lojze was almost too gentle. He used to allow children to do something naughty and he would just laugh about it."
Son Slavko’s thoughts about his father:
"I admire my father. I admire his strong will and life energy that helped him succeed. He is a legend to me, as a musician and also as a father, because I know very well of all the things he had to give up and how much effort it took. I love to remember the times when as a small kid I used to join him on business trips or festivals. I’ve often fallen asleep on a bench on such occasions. I can also remember my mom and me waiting for him to come home from his tours. Although I’ve always felt sad when he was leaving, the memories are still beautiful. Of course, as a son I’ve missed his presence in play, school issues, entertainment… He was a strict parent, his demands were high but always fair. I’ve learned important life values from my father. He’s been organized and consistent in what he did, he’s put all his energy into his work, but he’s always remained a people person. Because that’s just who he was – a musician for people. Perhaps that’s the key to his success.
I feel grateful that his music was a part of my growing up. It most likely left a mark on me. I recognize his style and sound of his accordion immediately after hearing just a few tones and I always will."
Son Robert about his father:
"It’s not easy to talk about what your father is like. Everyone already knows him as a musician, so all I can say in this regard is that I respect and admire him, because I know that beside his talent he’s put a lot of effort in his work.
He’s always tried to pass his passion for accordion to me, but I’ve chosen computer keyboard over the accordion buttons. I am much younger than my brother and my father has already been famous when I was a child, therefore he’s often been absent. Naturally, I’ve missed him due to his numerous performances and responsibilities, but when he’s come home, he’s always spent time with me. He has often taken me to the festivals and business trips, making me very happy because I could spend more time with him.
My father taught me about the importance of being hardworking, modest and well educated.
Keeping family together with love and mutual respect my parents have always been the best example for me to follow."
Tone Pavček – Slovenian poet:
"Lojze Slak is our legend and Slovenian national hero.
He has created kingdom of music out of nothing, nothing left ahead of him, with a pile of records and immortal melodies left behind. When touched by his fingers on the accordion, everything sang and filled Slovenian hearts with joy.
Only a few people in this world were given what he was: talent is a rich source and he took it with an open heart, enriched it and created a powerful river of music out of the ancient source of spring. Moreover, he was modest, as if he was just an organist, directed by the Lord, to whom he is resigned completely.
Walking nowadays in our land of ceremonies, basketmaker with his grapebasket, ploughman with a furrowed field, the skies echo back your songs, in our hearts rings the melody that has never existed before, discovered by LojzeSlak and devoted to his nation and to his life. Land, love for the country and all of its beauties were gathered and became more than just a tombstone to the creators, they became a tribute to life and to the triumph of the nation and Slovenian man.LojzeSlak did it in the way only he was able to, without of any false illusions or vanity, spontaneously and with simplicity. And he remains here among us as a boy from Dolenjska, Slovenian man in love with a beautiful song and a rich man, possessing more and more despites giving his wealth away.
We’ll take part in this “more and more” from now on."
Andrej Bergant – Fantje s Praprotna (leader)
"More than forty years ago it was a lucky coincidence that brought together the band Fantje s Praprotna and LojzeSlak Trio. Lojze was instantly impressed with our singing, as well as we admired his button accordion playing.
We respected Lojze as a composer due to the creative talent and the true sense of beautiful melodies he possessed, filling us with true passion for what we were doing. We became literally addicted to this music. I could say that “Slak has overgrown us” (“Slak” means “Field bindweed” in Slovenian language). During the time of Lojze’s most creative period we used to record up to 24 new songs per year and we did it with great enthusiasm. If you are a part of a group, having such a reasonable man with an enormous creative talent as a leader, you don’t even realize when the forty years of our performance together have passed."
Fanika Požek – copywriter
"Whenever I hear typical sound of Slak’s accordion, pictures of my youth appear in front of my eyes, when I was a girl who began to work with this ensemble. The hits we’ve created together – Deželicasonca in grozdja (Country of sun and grapes), Kadar srečamte (When I meet you), Lep je spomin (It’s a nice memory) – came out of the pure heart and won the hearts of people, seeing parts of their lives in these songs. LojzeSlak with his musicians and singers was able to help the audience to find their own soul, which, in my opinion, is the most important value of this music in general, because it has awaken the roots of Slovenian nature."
Irma Rauh – Radio Slovenia entertainment editor
"Birth of LojzeSlak’s Ensemble represents a turning point for traditional folk music. In music archives of Radio Slovenia we have a vast opus of LojzeSlak , the true folk musician. In all of these years we¬’ve had many beautiful music shows with his music, especially the show “Četrtkovivečeri” (Thursday nights). The key to LojzeSlak’s success was not only his persistency and creativity, but also the fantastic vocal group, great musicians, copywriters and music arrangers gathered around him. His sincerity has brought him close to people at home and abroad, thousands of fans of his music have attended his concerts. He takes the credit for polyphonic singing and button accordion popularization. He has brought back to life many forgotten folk songs. Slak’s melodies are especially felt among young music ensembles, imitating him for his simple, soft and sincere melodies. His organization skills, energy, ideas and continuous music activity are admirable."
Walter Ostanek – king of polka from Canada
"Lojze’s innovative accordion together with Fantje s Praprotna singing has forever enriched Slovenian folk music and spread it to all parts of the world. Just like Frank Yankovich in America LojzeSlak has paved the way to many other musicians in Slovenia. He is a true professional! I am really proud to know him. I respect him and I congratulate Lojze and his ensemble at the40th anniversary of their existence. "
John S. Pestotnik – chairman of United Slovenian Society, USA
"The LojzeSlak masterful accordion playing, his excellent musicians and singers Fantje s Praprotna have been a good reason for inviting them to perform in USA for five times since the first moment (in 1964) until today. His talent and the dynamics of the ensemble have brought tears in many eyes, brought back many faded memories and revived the sense of cultural pride, being proud of Slovenia, the homeland.
The result of his guest performances have been massive visits of the homeland. Furthermore, his hypnotic style has caused an incredible interest in button accordion, resulting in more than 100 “Button Box” clubs all over the USA. In my humble opinion LojzeSlak and his ensemble can be declared the most efficient and successful goodwill ambassadors for being able to gather so many people on his concerts in the USA, as well as for other reasons. Congratulations and many thanks for the wonderful 40 years."