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#1856226 - 03/04/12 05:52 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: newgeneration]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2649
Yes, thanks! I love the chance to use them. So much more fun than if you had just paid for an ad.


Edited by Ann in Kentucky (03/04/12 06:17 PM)

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#1856228 - 03/04/12 05:58 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: newgeneration]
Gary D. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4814
Loc: South Florida
Originally Posted By: newgeneration
Gary thanks for that thoughtful post.
I don't see DP's as the real cause for the downturn in piano sales, because as you mention (and I agree), the price point of the DP is so much less than an acoustic piano.

OK. I would say that of the last 100 students I have started, probably 90 of them have begun with cheap DPs. And unlike many people in this forum, I do NOT have a problem. Why? Because I am absolutely opposed to children getting anything they want, often very expensive things, before they have proved that they DESERVE those things.

Now, if students come to me and already have good instruments at home, for obvious reasons I am very happy. But if they have touch sensitivity and a sustain pedal on a starter DP, I can get them going. (I'm talking about beginners, true beginners coming to me with zero knowledge.)

Do they notice a big difference between what they play on at home and what they use in lessons, with me? I'm not sure it is more than a little important to them AT FIRST, while they are basically mapping out the keyboard, naming keys, learning to name notes on the page. But with each step forward they make, they become more aware of the small DP limitations. As we all know the most crippling thing about these cheap DPs is the action, so I am always pushing, quietly, to move towards something better, and that almost always happens in a reasonably short period of time. I described one such situation last night.

Now, the NEXT step is the part that I think impacts acoustic piano sales. Where do people go next? Will they move up to a weighted 88 key DP? Or move to an acoustic? Well, what you people who live in more open areas always forget is the absolutely absurd lack of space that those of us in very metropolitan areas deal with. What I WANT is a very large house with one big room for a pool table. I'm serious. Then another for a grand, and I want the grand to be just under concert grand in size. I'd like a lot of things. During the years when I was still performing seriously, I was used to PERFORMING on concert grands, and I also lived in places that had room for bigger pianos, where I could practice - without someone calling the police.

But now I am in a condo, a small place, neighbors on both sides, a neighbor above. When do I have most of my free time? AFTER MIDNIGHT. After teaching more than 40 students each week, the desire to practice things strikes me in the wee hours, and if it were not for DPs, I would not have an opportunity to work things out. I have a Yamaha CP1, and with earphones I am able to get to about 85% of where I need to be to make the adjustment to a fine acoustic.

Now, having said that, I have a lifetime of experience playing on fine pianos, so it takes me a very short time to make the adjustment back to an acoustic. Usually my biggest problem is not having lost my "feel" from the lack of an acoustic (being ruined by a DP) but rather stepping DOWN to some piece of junk that is unregulated, out of tune, and not capable of doing anything subtle even if it WERE "as good as new".

You are a tech. You have to know what I am talking about. smile

And on that note, I need to mention that recently I helped a family get a steal on a used grand. How? By talking them into checking out a couple instruments with a local tech. I told them under NO circustances to buy anything without having a fine technician play-test it.
Quote:

In that vein it is a wonderful situation that if DP's didn't exist, maybe some children would simply never get the chance of taking up lessons because it is simply too expensive to get involved with buying an acoustic piano.

Don't forget the size problem. In a perfect world people would have enough money to have a great acoustic AND a DP, side-by-side, because they do different things. Not all people live in mansions with sound-proofed rooms and the opportunity to play 24/7. A good DP is always a fall-back for odd hours and for privacy. Case in point: last night there were six of us in our tiny place, three grandchilden staying the weekend. I wanted to nail something down, just simple memory work, and I did it effortlessly between 2 and 3 AM, earphones. Everyone else was sleeping. No one was bothered. During the day if there are a couple computers and three game machines being used, no problem. I plug in, I have privacy.
Quote:

My only caution for clients is that like you point out, these keyboards have limitations (and gizmo distractions) and ultimately are like buying a computer - if a person buys a half decent DP, their money is gone and as a financial investment (just in case Suzy isn't seriously interested) they can't sell it for anything close to what they paid for it. A new model with new electronics has come out 6 months later and the electric DP they bought is already outdated.

Good points, and for precisely this reason I try to push all my students in the direction of a quality acoustic instrument. Having said that, we are both painfully aware of the ignorance of most people re pianos, so unless piano teachers make special trips to the homes of their students, they don't find out how badly most of them play. If you think most students' parents listen to us, the teachers, think how often the student's listen to you, the tech.

These are all factors. DPs are what they are. Acoustics only play very well when they are regularly serviced by first-rate techs.

Another factor is the ever decreasing amount of spending money available to families. With the triple factors of rising health, housing and education costs, many of us stay home and use our "gadgets" because we can no longer afford to do anything else. My wife and I are in this situation. The piano you are showcasing is close to half the price of a new car. Does that mean it is not worth it? No. Is it possible that the cost and quality is competitive with more traditional looking isntruments? On that my mind is open. I am simply saying that ANY truly first-rate piano, NEW, is a HUGE investment for the parents of students I teach. If they have close to $10,000 to play with, I am going to work hard to find them a rebuilt grand.

And before you say it, you can get really hosed on buying such an instrument if you are not working with a really good tech.
Quote:

I like the quote in your signature. I wonder if it applies to me in my situation with Lomence. smile

That's weird. I can't see the quote. It must be turned off.


Edited by Gary D. (03/04/12 05:58 PM)
_________________________
Piano Teacher

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#1856229 - 03/04/12 06:00 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: John v.d.Brook]
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11851
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: John v.d.Brook
Haven't you heard about Ann Coulter? While I seldom find common areas of agreement with her, I understand the provincial government is trying to convict her of "insult" or some such nonsense because she spoke out on an university campus against a number of Sharia practices.

I just looked it up. Apparently students protested her planned appearance because the values we hold in this country include not inciting hatred toward any group of people. The protesters got their wish. There was no legal action or government action from what I read.

Someone being hounded by a protesting mob after telling a student to "go ride a camel" does not seem to have much bearing on what legal attitudes exist in regards to pianos, and opinions on pianos.

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#1856231 - 03/04/12 06:06 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: keystring]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7418
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: keystring
Originally Posted By: John v.d.Brook
Haven't you heard about Ann Coulter? While I seldom find common areas of agreement with her, I understand the provincial government is trying to convict her of "insult" or some such nonsense because she spoke out on an university campus against a number of Sharia practices.

I just looked it up. Apparently students protested her planned appearance because the values we hold in this country include not inciting hatred toward any group of people. The protesters got their wish. There was no legal action or government action from what I read.

Someone being hounded by a protesting mob after telling a student to "go ride a camel" does not seem to have much bearing on what legal attitudes exist in regards to pianos, and opinions on pianos.

I heard a far different story, but as it doesn't apply to pianos, let's agree to let it die.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#1856233 - 03/04/12 06:09 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: newgeneration]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7418
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: newgeneration
[quote=John v.d.Brook] We're in the USA, as is the server. We enjoy freedom of speech and the right to express our opinion..... But XXX has a right to her opinion and to express it.

You may quote me accurately or not at all. Thank you.
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#1856236 - 03/04/12 06:13 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: newgeneration]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2649
Originally Posted By: newgeneration
I am still very appreciative of everyone's input.

But, please don't make any suggestive comments regarding its quality as that is definitely a case for libel.

So please, restrain yourself from addressing anything regarding the quality of Lomence


Your threats have me singing a different tune: "Chantilly lace, and a pretty case, and a pony tail, hanging down."

If you wanted to control the content of this ad, you should have paid for advertising.

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#1856243 - 03/04/12 06:34 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: keystring]
Gary D. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4814
Loc: South Florida
Originally Posted By: keystring
In regards to DP's, I was forced into getting one partly because of price, partly because with thin walls and floors and ceilings bordering on 4 neighbours, "silent practice" some of the time was the only guarantee of being able to practice at all. I got an instrument that comes as close as possible to allowing me to develop the technique which will transfer over to a good acoustic at some point.

As you very well know, I am in a similar situation. There are a lot of us around, and we get intimidated by people who have more money and larger homes. To admit that we have less, materially, is practically an admission of failure, and to admit that we freely work with and support other people who also have less is usually looked upon as a FURTHER sign of failure.

Twenty years ago 99% of my students were white. Now nearly half are African-American or Hispanic, and more than a few of these kids (and adults, sometimes) are among the best students I have ever had.

That's what people don't get. And it really tees me off. Ask WASPS about the good old days in America and you will hear raves of how wonderful things used to be in the "good old days". Ask minority parents who are getting something closer to a fair deal, for the first time, what THEY think and you will get an entirely different viewpoint.

I have no quarrel with John re the "cool" piano. If it plays well and a family with means has the money to buy it, why not? And I do agree it is unfair to make a judgment re the quality or sound of the instrument with having played it. Which obviously I am not going to have the opporunity of doing.

But I do not find that "cool looking" is a factor for MY students. For them it is more about "something cool to play for their friends", and that means "selling" what they play wherever they play. For me that's really the bottom line. For performers there is always an audience, and the more versatile the performer, the greater potential audience is out there for him/her, even when young. smile


Edited by Gary D. (03/04/12 06:35 PM)
_________________________
Piano Teacher

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#1856262 - 03/04/12 08:08 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: newgeneration]
newgeneration Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 428
Loc: Richmond Hill, Ontario
Thanks Gary for your honest and thoughtful posts.

Sorry to Ann and John for getting into some nonsensical bickering. From the honest concerns that come through your posts, you are dedicated teachers and that is commendable.

If we do cross paths at a convention somewhere, someday, let's all be friends and promote a strong future for the piano industry and the love of music in general.

If others care to throw in anything more, please by all means.
_________________________
John
J.D. Grandt Piano Supply Company
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Lomence Modern Crystal Piano (North America) www.facebook.com/LomencePianos
Piano Bass String Manufacturing Specialist (Worldwide) www.jdgrandt.com

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#1858026 - 03/07/12 08:06 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: newgeneration]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4441
Loc: San Jose, CA
"Often 48 keys, sold at Costco for $99. What exactly am I supposed to do? Tell them the salesman lied, this isn't a piano?"

Costco, a salesman?

John, in bed with Ann Coulter?

Ann in Kentucky, silenced by a libel suit?

My jaw just can't drop any further.
_________________________
Clef


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#1858040 - 03/07/12 08:39 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: Jeff Clef]
John v.d.Brook Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7418
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: Jeff Clef
"Often 48 keys, sold at Costco for $99. What exactly am I supposed to do? Tell them the salesman lied, this isn't a piano?"

Costco, a salesman?

John, in bed with Ann Coulter?

Ann in Kentucky, silenced by a libel suit?

My jaw just can't drop any further.

In bed with Ann? She's a bit skinny for me, and besides, I fear we'd have too many arguments!
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#1858062 - 03/07/12 09:26 PM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: John v.d.Brook]
Gary D. Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4814
Loc: South Florida
I missed this:

Originally Posted By: John v.d.Brook

I ask, "What did you get?" Do you know what I'm expecting to hear? Some brand of piano. Do you know what I generally hear? Some brand of electronic synthesizer. Often 48 keys, sold at Costco for $99. What exactly am I supposed to do? Tell them the salesman lied, this isn't a piano? Probably not a good idea, even though piano sales men and women have been hawking trash for five decades (at least).

I never know what is going to happen next. I am teaching two students who have only some kind of organ at home. I have no idea how they manage to take what I give them, somehow manage to adapt it to this organ (which I hear is not very big), then come back and play for me. But I think the real point is that both of them are doing very well, not as pianists (that will come later) but at sight-reading, chords, rhythm, etc.

I think I have a 50/50 chance of having a good little conference with the parents and working out a way for them to get something I would be more happy with, as a teacher, for obvious reasons.

But those 48 key things, man, I think I am pretty open-minded, but I'm out of that range in almost no time, so there are not even enough KEYS there for the music I write. This does not even touch upon the problem of no touch sensitivity and no sustain pedal...
_________________________
Piano Teacher

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#1858248 - 03/08/12 08:01 AM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: Jeff Clef]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2649
Originally Posted By: Jeff Clef
"Often 48 keys, sold at Costco for $99. What exactly am I supposed to do? Tell them the salesman lied, this isn't a piano?"

Costco, a salesman?

John, in bed with Ann Coulter?

Ann in Kentucky, silenced by a libel suit?

My jaw just can't drop any further.




Jeff, I was really trying to stay out of continued posts on this thread, but your post tickled my funny bone.

My point was that if I had to say something nice, all I could say is "nice case" (referring to "Chantilly lace, and a pretty case"). I am using the word "case" to refer to the piano cabinet, but not sure if this is an accepted use of the word "case".

Just like if you see a play that is a total flop, you may hear people say what great costumes the production has. Or a piano performance that is disappointing, you may hear what a great dress the performer wore. laugh

Edit: In other words, I was just kidding about changing my tune. I wasn't really silenced by the threat, just silenced by the tedium of the thread.

Edit again: You know a joke failed when you find yourself explaining it. Oh, well, some jokes bomb.


Edited by Ann in Kentucky (03/08/12 08:56 AM)

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#1858255 - 03/08/12 08:21 AM Re: Do you attend conventions? [Re: newgeneration]
R0B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/03/08
Posts: 1439
Loc: Australia
As a child, (when my parents were not around) I used to love taking off the top and bottom panels, also the fallboard, just to see all the mechanics.
I even went so far as to put drawing pins in the hammers, to give a 'honky tonk' sound.

A little perspex window, would have been boringly tame by comparison.
_________________________
Rob

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