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#2192774 - 12/05/13 02:45 AM Side decals
PhilipInChina Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/19/13
Posts: 1242
Loc: China
When did side decals first become commonly used? I detest them.
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#2192777 - 12/05/13 02:53 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
BDB Online   content
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Loc: Oakland
1800s, I believe.
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#2192795 - 12/05/13 05:17 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
PhilipInChina Offline
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Registered: 10/19/13
Posts: 1242
Loc: China
I am surprised. I had imagined them to have been a much more modern feature than that.
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#2192813 - 12/05/13 07:11 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Roger Ransom Offline
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Registered: 01/19/05
Posts: 1291
Loc: SouthWest Michigan
I thought they were just on stage pianos so the audience could see the brand?

Not true? they have them on home pianos too? I wouldn't like that either, seems a little garish to me.
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#2192837 - 12/05/13 08:42 AM Re: Side decals [Re: Roger Ransom]
Karl Watson Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/20/11
Posts: 384
Well, I believe that they were common in the 19th century. There is the famous instance of von Bulow's American tour.

Must have died out in the 20th century.

Karl Watson
Staten Island, NY

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#2192842 - 12/05/13 09:01 AM Re: Side decals [Re: Karl Watson]
Rich Galassini Offline
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Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 9414
Loc: Philadelphia/South Jersey
Originally Posted By: Karl Watson
Well, I believe that they were common in the 19th century. There is the famous instance of von Bulow's American tour.

Must have died out in the 20th century.


Nope they haven't died out:












I don't mind them if they are tastefully done. In some cases, the brass lettering improves the look of a plain black cabinet, IMHO, but we will each have our preference.

I respect yours, PhilipInChina.
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Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
Dir. Line (215) 991-0834
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#2192859 - 12/05/13 09:35 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4441
Loc: San Jose, CA
Is it possible to order a piano without the side decal, if it comes with one--- or to remove it? The problem would be, I suppose, that it limits the buyer's choice to the instrument they special-ordered, rather than finding the one that plays the best and sounds the best... and for those big concert grands, that is a big consideration.
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#2192861 - 12/05/13 09:41 AM Re: Side decals [Re: Jeff Clef]
Rich Galassini Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 9414
Loc: Philadelphia/South Jersey
Originally Posted By: Jeff Clef
Is it possible to order a piano without the side decal, if it comes with one--- or to remove it? The problem would be, I suppose, that it limits the buyer's choice to the instrument they special-ordered, rather than finding the one that plays the best and sounds the best... and for those big concert grands, that is a big consideration.


Jeff,

Most of these names are inlaid brass lettering, which can be removed and covered as if it was never there, but only in a black piano and it isn't an easy procedure.

If the piano is a wood grain, it is much more difficult to get it to look like it was never there.
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Rich Galassini
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Dir. Line (215) 991-0834
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#2192868 - 12/05/13 09:51 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
I've gotta admit, I'm not particularly fond of the side logos, but I've come to accept them on stage instruments. For my taste, they are a little too ostentatious in a home setting. I certainly would hate to see concert attendance become the visual feast like Nascar or a baseball game. Ah yes, concert attire with embroidered logos! Yea, I know that's a bit extreme.

As BDB mentioned, during the late 19th Century, when the brand wars were raging, the piano builders would arrange concert tours with Name pianists to show off their brand of piano. The side logo was a prime marketing technique as the piano traveled from city to city with the tour.

Looking back at instruments from the first half of the 20th Century, it seems to have taken a hiatus. Even something so important as the Horowitz' Carnegie Hall recitals didn't have a Steinway with a side logo.

Since the 1980's, the use seems to be back with a vengeance. I wonder if this is now due to all of the video recordings with close-ups of the pianist, face and hands, from various viewpoints? The fallboard logo and side logo become very prominent.

Marketing!

Sometimes the piano logos can be problematic. When Lisitsa, a Bösendorfer artist, recorded the Rachmaninoff Concertos on a Steinway and the sessions were video recorded, black tape came to the rescue to 'de-identify' the piano.

Interesting!
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#2192869 - 12/05/13 09:57 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14051
Loc: Louisiana
If you've got it, flaunt it. cool

As I wrote to someone this week about side decals...If I was fortunate enough to afford a new piano that I really liked, I'd certainly like to have tasteful side decals on the piano.

Nah, scratch that.

What I actually said was that I'd be prouder of my new piano than a puppy with two pet*rs. grin (Fill in the asterisk for yourself blush whome ).

Folks, that's a mighty proud dog...one who has been found glad and rejoices therein.
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#2192909 - 12/05/13 11:33 AM Re: Side decals [Re: Rich Galassini]
pianoloverus Online   content
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Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19646
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Rich Galassini
I don't mind them if they are tastefully done. In some cases, the brass lettering improves the look of a plain black cabinet, IMHO, but we will each have our preference.
Exactly.

There are some piano where the lettering looks around twice the size or twice the thickness of the examples you showed and that kind of lettering is too garish for my tastes. And decals on the side of concert or semi concert grand size pianos don't look as garish as they do on a smaller piano.

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#2192971 - 12/05/13 02:19 PM Re: Side decals [Re: Minnesota Marty]
Steve Peterson Offline

Bronze Level Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 03/15/13
Posts: 182
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty


Sometimes the piano logos can be problematic. When Lisitsa, a Bösendorfer artist, recorded the Rachmaninoff Concertos on a Steinway and the sessions were video recorded, black tape came to the rescue to 'de-identify' the piano.

Interesting!


Indeed they can. When Glenn Gould re-recorded the Goldberg Variations in 1981 he was unable to find a Steinway he liked enough for the recording. He ended up recording the album with a Yamaha instead. If you watch the video they made of him recording the album, you'll note they took the fallboard off. His relationship with Steinway was pretty strained at the time, and his publicly recording on a Yamaha would have been too much for Steinway.
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#2192979 - 12/05/13 02:33 PM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
frenchflip Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 107
Loc: New York, NY
I love it and am happy to see that Bosendorfer uses it on all models. Of course, they have a beautiful logo. There are some others that are pretty awful. Is Brodmann the offender? Looks like a grade-school stencil.

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#2193035 - 12/05/13 04:16 PM Re: Side decals [Re: frenchflip]
Rich Galassini Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 9414
Loc: Philadelphia/South Jersey
Originally Posted By: frenchflip
I love it and am happy to see that Bosendorfer uses it on all models. Of course, they have a beautiful logo. There are some others that are pretty awful. Is Brodmann the offender? Looks like a grade-school stencil.


As I said, I do not mind side logos and, in fact, I like them when they are tastefully done. Here is our 5'10" being played at a local arts center. Personally I like it. But not everybody does.

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Cunningham Piano Co.
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rich@cunninghampiano.com
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#2193041 - 12/05/13 04:20 PM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
BDB Online   content
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Loc: Oakland
When we started using Yamahas in concert, the YAMAHA lettering on the side was stick-on labels. There were extra letters if they rubbed off. I kept wanting to put AHAMAY on the other side of the piano.
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#2193104 - 12/05/13 06:15 PM Re: Side decals [Re: BDB]
frenchflip Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 107
Loc: New York, NY
Originally Posted By: BDB
When we started using Yamahas in concert, the YAMAHA lettering on the side was stick-on labels. There were extra letters if they rubbed off. I kept wanting to put AHAMAY on the other side of the piano.

Very surprised to learn that this is the approach Yamaha takes. Just out of curiosity, is it a 6 pointed circular logo also a sticker? This one:
http://www.famouslogos.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/yamaha-current-logo.jpg

Cunningham could probably benefit from losing the words "piano company" and whatever is written underneath (can't even really see it), and it making the type larger. Just my humble opinion. I hear the Cunningham is one fine piano so no ill intention here!

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#2193105 - 12/05/13 06:19 PM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
BDB Online   content
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No, back then, in the CFIII (no s) days, they were just stickers. With the CFIIIs and CFX, it is inlaid brass. This has gotten more popular, since it can be done with laser cutters. So although the logo on the side has been done since the 1800s, it has taken off in the past 25 years or so.
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#2193171 - 12/05/13 09:09 PM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
doctor S Online   content
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Registered: 05/27/12
Posts: 154
Loc: Western PA
PETROF! The Largest, Loudest Brass Inlaid Side LOGO (so glad mine is only on the fallboard!)
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#2193190 - 12/05/13 10:05 PM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Thrill Science Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/11
Posts: 540
Loc: California
I like my side logo. I suppose it is a little tacky, but I like it.





Edited by Thrill Science (12/05/13 10:07 PM)
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#2193245 - 12/06/13 12:07 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Philm35 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/13
Posts: 44
Loc: Cincinnati, OH
How can I get my hands on one of those Bosendorfer decals? I'd like to put one on my Howard.
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#2193250 - 12/06/13 12:24 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
BDB Online   content
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Registered: 06/07/03
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Loc: Oakland
They are not decals. They are inlaid metal.
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#2193251 - 12/06/13 12:25 AM Re: Side decals [Re: Philm35]
thetandyman Offline
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Registered: 03/27/12
Posts: 443
Loc: Indiana
In Indiana, where I live, many folks would like a piano better if it had a "John Deere" or "Harley Davidson" emblem on the side! LOL I'm not kidding much, If you sell a jar of honey, and it has the Harley logo, it brings twice as much.
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#2193253 - 12/06/13 12:27 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
Originally Posted By: Philm35
How can I get my hands on one of those Bosendorfer decals? I'd like to put one on my Howard.

Shhhhh, Don't tell anyone.

http://www.decalsunlimited.com/products/7103-bosendorfer
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#2193259 - 12/06/13 12:49 AM Re: Side decals [Re: Minnesota Marty]
PhilipInChina Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/19/13
Posts: 1242
Loc: China
I had no idea I would get such a response.

In the old days the BBC would never carry any name of anything. Names were blacked out on products used- even down to taking a label off a can of something that was used as a prop in a TV sit com. If a piano were to be featured there would not even be a fallboard decal on it. My father would always try to guess what the pianist was playing.
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#2193263 - 12/06/13 12:58 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
BDB Online   content
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Registered: 06/07/03
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Loc: Oakland
The British were known for their modesty in such things, as can be seen here.
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#2193275 - 12/06/13 01:25 AM Re: Side decals [Re: thetandyman]
Thrill Science Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/11
Posts: 540
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: thetandyman
In Indiana, where I live, many folks would like a piano better if it had a "John Deere" or "Harley Davidson" emblem on the side! LOL I'm not kidding much, If you sell a jar of honey, and it has the Harley logo, it brings twice as much.


It's not on the side, but Steinway tried slapping John Lennon's name on pianos to get more money:

http://www.steinway.com/imagine

Harley Davidson on a piano makes just as much sense, as Lennon isn't known as a pianist.
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#2193311 - 12/06/13 03:21 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
wimpiano Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 1617
Loc: The Netherlands
Just wondering, which one of the above pianos do you think looks nicest?

Of course musical quality is key but it's in your living (or piano) room anyway so it's a bonus if it looks nice isn't it?


Edited by wimpiano (12/06/13 03:21 AM)
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#2193349 - 12/06/13 06:41 AM Re: Side decals [Re: thetandyman]
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14051
Loc: Louisiana
Originally Posted By: thetandyman
In Indiana, where I live, many folks would like a piano better if it had a "John Deere" or "Harley Davidson" emblem on the side! LOL I'm not kidding much, If you sell a jar of honey, and it has the Harley logo, it brings twice as much.


Probably have to pay too much for the licensing, although if Henry J thought Baldwin could sell it, you could most likely buy a grand finished in John Deere green. Which is a mite muted compared against some of the styles they put out just a few years ago.

Inletted brass reminds me of the skills needed to do marquetry...I think marquetry, tastefully done on a nice wood-finish rebuild could be an added selling point. Problem is, I don't think the public would pay for it, even for a small amount, such as an inlaid rose or a small accent line of wood.
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#2193353 - 12/06/13 06:59 AM Re: Side decals [Re: Minnesota Marty]
Jean Claude Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 09/18/11
Posts: 393
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Originally Posted By: Philm35
How can I get my hands on one of those Bosendorfer decals? I'd like to put one on my Howard.

Shhhhh, Don't tell anyone.

http://www.decalsunlimited.com/products/7103-bosendorfer


This must be the only place in the world where Steck, Kimball, and Everett are the same price as Steinway and Bösendorfer.

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#2193378 - 12/06/13 08:31 AM Re: Side decals [Re: PhilipInChina]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4441
Loc: San Jose, CA
"...many folks would like a piano better if it had a "John Deere" or "Harley Davidson" emblem on the side..."

Or International Harvester...
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