Stuff Found in Pianos

Never ceases to amaze me the things I find in pianos.   There were the 27 pen­cils and pens in one upright, a volume of the Encyclopedia Britannica in anoth­er, and sev­er­al dead rock crabs in an upright near the sea shore.  My favour­ite is still the dried pea­nut under the frame of a small grand that nearly drove a cus­tom­er mad.  Finding that was akin to pulling a thorn from a lions paw.

James Lithgow tuning at MusicFest

I added to my list of stuff this past sum­mer while look­ing after the piano for MusicFest.

Vancouver Island MusicFest had a couple of artists this past sum­mer for whom the digit­al appli­ance is wholly inad­equate. Randy Newman wouldn't sign unless he had a real piano. Newman is a Steinway artist and Tom Lee Music has those kind of pianos lying around.

A Model 'B' showed up on stage for the first of sev­er­al tun­ings dur­ing the week­end. Ah, the great out­doors, pianos just don't get out­side much.
I opened up the lid, took out the music desk and removed the fall­board, sat down to play an arpeg­gio and in the bass there was this weird flut­tery sound.

Cowichan Music Festival Ribbon

A par­ti­cip­a­tion rib­bon for the Cowichan Music Festival. The piano was on a tour of Vancouver Island this sum­mer.
Anyway no harm done with the rib­bon and it is serving duty as a book­mark presently. Thanks anonym­ous par­ti­cipant in the 62nd Annual Cowichan Music Festival!

Tucked away in the back corner of the MusicFest stage I was able to tune and do oth­er tweaks in rel­at­ive peace. Early in the morn­ing the worst thing to con­tend with are the deliv­ery truck back up alarms.

So, it's now late on Saturday after­noon, I've just fin­ished touch­ing up the tun­ing for the Holly Cole Band and Randy Newman. Last uni­son settled and there's a clunk in the action. I peer down inside and there's a large piano tuner's mute sit­ting between the ham­mers an octave or so below middle C. A very long one, and not one of the type I use.

Piano tuning mute
I can ima­gine the frus­tra­tion of arriv­ing at the next job to dis­cov­er you are miss­ing a mute. I've now got an extra one! Thanks anonym­ous tech­ni­cian.

Randy Newman at MusicFest 2011

Piano soun­ded pretty good I thought as Aaron Davis with Holly Cole and later Randy Newman gave it a run.

Showed up the next day to start over again with tun­ing and found Randy Newman's set­l­ist taped to the music desk. No indic­a­tion wheth­er it is in his hand or one of his hand­lers' hands.

Randy Newman's Set-list

Thanks not so anonym­ous Randy Newman.

Shame he didn't write his name and thanks for mak­ing the piano sound nice but, such is the nature of a job that you only really get noticed when you've made an error.


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