Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Piano Man

After 10 glorious days away in nature (Vancouver Island) and the city (LA), where do I start! My head is full. My heart is soaring. My photo albums are bursting at the seams.

So where do I start but with a soulful collection that brings back so many memories from my childhood when these player pianos were more common. Here's Dave (Dennis' dad) whom I have now just met. The piano man. This particular piano is a Duo-Art brand that Dave is threading with a paper music roll which he had picked out from a huge collection. And you think WE'RE bad!

What's absolutely delightful about these player pianos, of course, is watching the keys move by themselves! I never tire of watching them play magically as the music fills the room. Maybe Mom was sitting there doing the classical pieces; maybe her step-dad was there playing the honky-tonk by ear with an ecstatic grin on his face. I was once again mesmerized, just as in my childhood days!

Remember the ditty we used to say while doing our folded-hand motions:

Here's the church, here's the steeple.
Open the door and there's all the people.

At one point, after all my pics, Judy decided to take off all the photos standing on the baby grand. I never would have asked her to go to that trouble, but she must have wanted me to see all the "people!" And there they are: all the strings willing and ready to play any piano man on any music roll.

It really WAS like a church and steeple for me because of how soulful the entire experience was, from beginning to end. I wonder if everyone has had a chance to go to this kind of church?!


  1. Very very cool! Yes my head is still full from my weekend, from friday and thereafter which was just as busy also..

    I'm still gleaming too but so much to do.. I learned a bit from the photo class last night... A good rule...

    Ok - glad you are back and can't wait to see all of the pics!


  2. Wow! What a beautiful piece and so well kept! I have always been fascinated by player pianos. I so happy that you had such a great time.

    Now, we just have to be patient for the picts :-)

  3. Very cool! I'm thinking the two of you (you and Dave) could probably spend all your time together just talking about each of your own collections! ;-)

  4. Oh Ginnie - You've reminded me how much I LOVE our wonderful piano! No one could show it better. THANK YOU! THANK!

  5. (Ginnie - sorry - missed the second YOU) so again THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

  6. I love the post, and that piano! Wonderful lighting and photos. Especially the one of the keys playing by themselves. Perfect. A great way to start us on your journey -- from the end first! :)

  7. ET: There are so many memories that I'm gonna have to give them in bite-sized pieces, I think! I don't want them to all lump together. Our day with you and P was definitely one of the "pieces" and I'm glad I was able to post about that already.

    CS: So glad you know what I'm talking about. I had almost forgotten they existed--player pianos--because you just don't see them any more. Well, at least I don't.

    Amy: We definitely have the collections to talk about but I'm afraid Dave's are much bigger! Wait till you see them all the next time you're there.

    Judy: I sure hope I did "right" by that very soulful collection. It sure touched me where it counts! Thanks for your kind words.

    Ruth: Oh yes, I forgot to say that I'm starting at the end and going backwards! Thanks for your kind words as well.

  8. It may be odd, but I've never seen a player piano in action.

    The entire process intrigues me...

  9. I have always been fond of the way music can instantly create a bond between strangers. I love your insights about those who could have been sitting there playing in the vacant space. That would make an interesting short story.

  10. Mrs. M/Shari: Now that really surprises me, with all your music experience. That simply confirms for me that there aren't many of them around!

    Rachel: That's a nice way to put it! Thanks.

  11. Welcome back! I can just see you almost bursting at the seams with memories and stories from your trip. Can't wait to hear all about it.

    And what a lovely post to get the ball rolling. You got to connect up with so many great people this time.

  12. Player pianos are such fun and intriguing. And the insides of pianos are always so facinating to see at least for me. It's kind of neat to see the mechanical sources of our music inside and out.

  13. Christina: Yes, indeed. It all was a fabulous time!

    Tim: I totally agree. So much to learn by observing!