I’m a professional musician who lives in Brooklyn NY. I have an upright piano in my studio that Orpheus regularly tunes, along with several keyboards; but up until last year, I had never had a piano in the living room as an adult.
When my first child was born, I realized I wanted to have a piano around at home, particularly around the holiday season, as this was a big part of my own childhood. Having a piano right there, next to the tree, to play songs on and to sing along to Christmas tunes with, just seemed absolutely vital, and wasn’t something I wanted her to miss out on. My daughter was barely three months old last Christmas, but still I felt it was an urgent matter.
My good friend Isaac Wynn at Orpheus was keen on helping me figure out how to track a cheap piano down in time for the holidays. Together we ended up in the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn, haggling over an ancient-looking Wurlitzer spinet that an old piano dealer told us “he just needed to get rid of.” I was skeptical that this would be the one given its condition, but there was something about it that sung to me, and Isaac encouraged me to go for it. After having it moved into its niche in my Clinton Hill apartment, Isaac spent more than a few hours tinkering away. The man is an alchemist. He brought out all of the best qualities of the instrument and somehow removed all the bad ones.
I’m now happy to report that it’s a regular activity for my daughter and me to sit down at the piano where we play not just Christmas songs on the holidays, but folk songs, Beatles tunes, and her own free-form avant-garde baby jazz. I hope music will be as big a part of her life as it is in mine, and that this piano may prove to be her gateway into that world.