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#2305491 - 07/22/14 03:53 PM Where is the new blood?
Markarian Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 325
Loc: Seattle Area
Before I begin I want to preface this by saying that I intend this to be a civil and insightful discussion, and that I bring this up with only the utmost respect for those who have provided me help and guidance in my journey to find an instrument.

As some of you may know, I have been on a bit of a roller coaster ride in my process to secure a piano that will be my "forever" instrument, the piano that is still sitting around during my wake. I have talked to numerous dealers, sales reps, factory reps, rebuilders, technicians, enthusiasts and other piano people. I won't go into a lengthy narrative of my experiences here because that's not the point of my thread.

I'm a Millennial. I'm probably younger than the average Steinway buyer, especially one looking at B's and D's. I grew up on the Internet and was raised by Nickelodeon, Nintendo, and Netscape. I was not raised with a piano in the home, and had to make do on keyboards and digital pianos until now. At 31, I finally have a unique opportunity to pursue a career as an independent composer--a rare gift, to be sure.

During my experiences in the world of pianos, I have noticed that the entire community tends toward a much older crowd. The youngest person I met in my journey was a local sales rep who was well into his mid-40s. Countless times, I've been regaled with anecdotes of the glory days of a mythical beast called Sherman Clay in times when I was still in diapers and the world was not yet ready for Devo.

During all of this, I am left wondering where the younger techs, reps, and craftsmen are. I realize the economy has been particularly rough on my generation's efforts to launch their careers (see above) and that acoustic pianos aren't exactly the centerpiece of home entertainment anymore, but the fact remains that I have been left feeling uneasy for two reasons:

For starters, when you're relatively young and spending more money than you ever have in your life is intimidating enough. When you are constantly dealing with a parade of colorful characters--some whom strongly disagree with each other--that are old enough to be your father it can make the experience even more daunting. Now there is something to be said for wisdom and experience and I have received that in excess. For that I am very grateful.

But the second, and perhaps most pressing, issue is the quiet question of who will take up the mantle of maintaining this industry when those involved become so old they can no longer work. I am surrounded by great techs in this area, but who will service my Steinway when I myself am 50, even 60? Who is going to work on Lang Lang's D when he goes on tour in 2040?

Now it could be that I am simply seeing a narrow cross-section of the piano industry, based on my location and the type of piano I was looking for. Could these younger sales reps, technicians, and rebuilders be lurking in less expensive, less competitive metro areas?

My point is that I would love to both have more people closer to my age in this journey I could relate to, as well as feel secure in knowing that the network of support and knowledge will continue to be there for me for as long as I play. As for the former issue, I know of only one person on this forum who is the same age as I, and my hat's off to him for reaching out to me way back in November.

And to all you out there who have helped me, and who continue to help me, you have my sincerest gratitude and respect.


Edited by Markarian (07/22/14 03:55 PM)
_________________________
2012 NY Steinway Model B | Kawai MP11 | Korg Kross 61

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#2305505 - 07/22/14 04:19 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 864
The millennials are working at tech companies that Netscape founder Mark Andreesen funded or are working on Wall Street, not retailing or rebuilding pianos.
_________________________
Casio CDP-100
2012 Kawai RX-5 BLAK

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#2305515 - 07/22/14 04:33 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8564
Loc: Georgia, USA
It's not just the piano industry where this is a problem (not enough younger people interested in the field/trade); it's also a problem in other industries and the trades. I suppose there are lots of reasons the younger generation is not interested in some of these fields/industries.

As for me, I fall into the older generation you speak of... I'm on the downhill side of life, but having a ball with my pianos! smile

Rick

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Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel

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#2305521 - 07/22/14 04:45 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1391
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Pianos will never go out of style. But they are not as mainstream as they once were, that is true, and they probably won't be again.

Piano tuning and technology is not the bright career it once was, so let's face it, less people are attracted to it.

The ones that make a full-time career in this field are truly well rounded.

I wrote an article about the phenomenal rise and fall of the pianos. You can read it here:
http://howtotunepianos.com/2014/05/04/why-you-may-want-to-learn-how-to-tune-your-piano/
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2305528 - 07/22/14 05:04 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
wimpiano Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 1386
Loc: The Netherlands
My tuner is 35 and I am 31.
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Schimmel 116 S ..

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#2305529 - 07/22/14 05:05 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Ben_NZ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/16/14
Posts: 83
Loc: Auckland, New Zealand
I'm 34, and I've met some piano techs and salespeople around my age. I suspect my tech is probably younger than me - I haven't asked her. wink
I don't know anyone who owns a piano though. I would expect more young people in the industry if demand were increasing.

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#2305533 - 07/22/14 05:20 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Carbonblob Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/26/13
Posts: 333
Loc: Los Angeles, Ca.
Good question........

Maybe there's another "Moog" inventor yet to come along and perhaps the technology will be so great by 2040 that instead of a 9 foot grand, there'll be some spacey looking carbon fiber electronic thing on stage. There's been recent posts showing us actual projects not far from that description.

Take the printing biz. I could name you dozens of print craftsman positions that simply don't exist now, hence, no apprentices either. Maybe the piano will never undergo a "technological revolution" and 100 years from now, pianos will look exactly the same (with some minor tweaks), I hope so. Still, you have to take your hat off to a product so complex, it has more parts than your car and we're discussing a design that goes back centuries. That's pretty cool and says something about the engineering. What's it all going matter if there's nobody left to sell or maintain them?

I would be pretty hard pressed to see why anyone, of the generations you're speaking too, would pursue this field. There'll always be someone, as Mark mentioned but I wonder what this market segment will look like decades from now? Yeah, good question..........blob
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#2305538 - 07/22/14 05:44 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Grandman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/18/12
Posts: 199
Loc: Usa
This is a scary thought.

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#2305549 - 07/22/14 06:10 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
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It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2305555 - 07/22/14 06:32 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Del Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/03
Posts: 5316
Loc: Olympia, Washington
For what it's worth --

Some 500+ of us attended the PTG Annual Convention in Atlanta last week. I gave two classes to an audience whose average age was probably forty something. Since there were several approaching my age in the group that means there were also several who were considerably younger.

I've been going to these things for better than forty years and, while I expect that the average age of the group is some higher now than it was when I started, I still see a good smattering of younger people as well. And that, by the way, includes a smattering of younger women as well as younger men. (And that is a welcome change from the early years.)

ddf
_________________________
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Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon

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#2305569 - 07/22/14 07:14 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Ben_NZ]
JohnSprung Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/11
Posts: 1439
Loc: Reseda, California
Originally Posted By: Ben_NZ
I'm 34, and I've met some piano techs and salespeople around my age. I suspect my tech is probably younger than me - I haven't asked her. wink


Are you married? Is she? Do you want to be sure you have the same tech for the rest of your life? ;-)
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Knabe Grand # 10927
Yamaha CP33
Kawai FS690

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#2305573 - 07/22/14 07:25 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Piano*Dad Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/12/05
Posts: 10385
Loc: Williamsburg, VA
Markarian,

I can't cite the statistics of the piano industry … then again no one else can either since they don't exist! Nonetheless, I think there are some general characteristics of an industry like this that are at work.

First off, as everyone knows the piano biz is in decline. This has been true for quite some time. But it once had a more solid employment base. I think this is an almost canonical example of a bottleneck of existing labor (everything from techs and wood workers to sales people and executives). Some of these people can move into other lines of work more easily than others, but in general the decline of the industry likely has created this blockage that has shifted the age distribution of the people we run into in this industry. It'll shake out over time, but there may be a period when the younger end is rather underrepresented, and that may very well be today. On top of that, entry into a retrenching industry isn't really most young people's cup of tea. I suspect we'll get an oscillating situation. At some point the retirement of the oldsters will create a dearth of qualified labor (beware the shysters of 2025 smile ), and that shortage may pull in some younger workers over time.

My tech is around my age, so I'm probably OK for a while. grin
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#2305575 - 07/22/14 07:28 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
doctor S Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/27/12
Posts: 137
Loc: Western PA
There is hope in "niche" markets. I am not an organist, but among very few acquaintances I know two pipe organ builders, one a few blocks away, and another within driving distance (he tuned my piano). The part-time piano tuner is in great demand; he's less than 30. Apparently both are working hard and being paid for it (the senior organ builder is the only person I know with a heated driveway: 1000 feet of concrete!)

Despite the utter demise of the home spinet organ, and the tendency of newer churches toward electronic organs (or no organ at all), there must be pipe organs somewhere and someone is (apparently) paying these guys to build and maintain them.

On the other hand, my Main Man piano tuner is probably in his mid-50's and he had to cancel my tuning date today 'cause he had to take a detour to the hospital. The Best Tuner in our area had to quit recently due to hand arthritis.

My mother in Phoenix speaks reverentially of the lost age of Sherman Clay. She just had her Steinway rebuilt (the rebuilder is in his 70's). If you want an heirloom for your children, I imagine the cheapest way would be to find a good "new" rebuilt Steinway or Mason & Hamlin. The tuners are out there: I can think of 3 that I would trust with my Petrof: two are under 40 (and one's a lady!)
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"I will hear in Heaven." Beethoven

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#2305589 - 07/22/14 07:49 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: JohnSprung]
Ben_NZ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/16/14
Posts: 83
Loc: Auckland, New Zealand
Originally Posted By: JohnSprung
Are you married? Is she? Do you want to be sure you have the same tech for the rest of your life? ;-)

If she were single, let's just say I don't think she'd be interested!

This thread has caused a corny, faintly arrogant country song Jerry Lee Lewis did, "Who's Gonna Play This Old Piano", to get stuck in my head. Thanks a lot. :p

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#2305605 - 07/22/14 08:11 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
The phenomenon you're referring to has been underway for a long time. What you're referring to is actually the tail-end of a process that has been ongoing since the end of WWII.

The first thing that happened is people stopped going out. People went out BIG time in the 1910's, 20's, 30's and 40's, but after the War, all those big bands that had been a staple since the 1920's suddenly found work harder and harder to come by. This process continued until the mid-1970's, when the last of the big bands finally packed it in.

However, even as big bands became extinct, the bar band scene was on the rise and became the live venue of choice. But they too experience a slow decline, until the bar-band scene finally petered out altogether, leaving almost nothing in terms of live music.

The classical music scene croaked at the same time as the avante garde jazz scene, in circa 1963. By the early 70's, all the big-name composers had died off, and as in the jazz world, there simply was no new generation to take over.

This isn't to say that no one is writing jazz and classical any longer- they are. But they're a generation of wannabees and wankers who aren't breaking any new ground, aren't doing anything original, and are more taxidermists and weekend-warriors than real musicians.

Miles Davis went to a big rock concert some time in the 60's, watched bands like Tower of Power, and realised that the music scene was in a bad way. The new generation of musicians, and their audience, didn't know anything about music. By that I mean you suddenly had people writing music who didn't know the first thing about how music works. They're just bashing and thrashing around, doing everything by rote. Same kind of thing you hear in a "Blues" club, where old bar-band musicians wank out on 12- and 16-bar, b.s.-ing the night away.

By the 90's, the younger audience-members were drifting away, big-time, because most of them hated live music. They hated it for two reasons- one, it was all an older generation playing the live music (just look at the Stones, Sabbath, ACDC, all the other geriatric bands out there), and because THEIR generation was listening to Karaoke-like rectal spew, sung to prerecorded synths 'n' sequencers, with one or more pretty people angsting and whining and pretending away on-stage.

Frank Zappa prophetically warned of the "pretty" trend many years ago. He wrote "I'm So Cute" as a result. That's all the country scene is now- pretty people lip-syncing soap-opera schlock.

Young people today are in the same situation guys like me were in around 1970. As a brass & piano musician, I thought my future lay in playing live music. The brass gigs suddenly vanished, I had to buy an electric keyboard and learn to play bass, FAST, in order to land jobs, and my last regular gig was around ten years ago. That's all she wrote. There simply are no regular live venues to keep musicians working full-time, or even part-time in many locations.

I know musicians all over the UK, Europe, Canada and the US. We're all in pretty much the same boat.

There is still some work out there. I'm in the process of buying a 23-passenger bus & trailer, the trailer to be converted into a portable stage. This, for playing the Folk, Fringe and Jazz Festivals from coast to coast. The money's poor, you only get to play part of the year, but it's that or play only a few gigs a year.

And that's pretty much what's out there.

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#2305618 - 07/22/14 08:58 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Piano*Dad]
Steve Cohen Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10490
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Piano*Dad
My tech is around my age, so I'm probably OK for a while. grin


I didn't think techs kept working beyond their 80s.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#2305643 - 07/22/14 09:39 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Steve Cohen]
Del Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/03
Posts: 5316
Loc: Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted By: Steve Cohen
Originally Posted By: Piano*Dad
My tech is around my age, so I'm probably OK for a while. grin


I didn't think techs kept working beyond their 80s.

I'll let you know. Very few things frighten me as much as the thought that one day I might have to actually "retire."

ddf
_________________________
Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon

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#2305669 - 07/22/14 10:49 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
Markarian Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 325
Loc: Seattle Area
Originally Posted By: gsmonks
The phenomenon you're referring to has been underway for a long time. What you're referring to is actually the tail-end of a process that has been ongoing since the end of WWII.

The first thing that happened is people stopped going out. People went out BIG time in the 1910's, 20's, 30's and 40's, but after the War, all those big bands that had been a staple since the 1920's suddenly found work harder and harder to come by. This process continued until the mid-1970's, when the last of the big bands finally packed it in.

However, even as big bands became extinct, the bar band scene was on the rise and became the live venue of choice. But they too experience a slow decline, until the bar-band scene finally petered out altogether, leaving almost nothing in terms of live music.

The classical music scene croaked at the same time as the avante garde jazz scene, in circa 1963. By the early 70's, all the big-name composers had died off, and as in the jazz world, there simply was no new generation to take over.

This isn't to say that no one is writing jazz and classical any longer- they are. But they're a generation of wannabees and wankers who aren't breaking any new ground, aren't doing anything original, and are more taxidermists and weekend-warriors than real musicians.

Miles Davis went to a big rock concert some time in the 60's, watched bands like Tower of Power, and realised that the music scene was in a bad way. The new generation of musicians, and their audience, didn't know anything about music. By that I mean you suddenly had people writing music who didn't know the first thing about how music works. They're just bashing and thrashing around, doing everything by rote. Same kind of thing you hear in a "Blues" club, where old bar-band musicians wank out on 12- and 16-bar, b.s.-ing the night away.

By the 90's, the younger audience-members were drifting away, big-time, because most of them hated live music. They hated it for two reasons- one, it was all an older generation playing the live music (just look at the Stones, Sabbath, ACDC, all the other geriatric bands out there), and because THEIR generation was listening to Karaoke-like rectal spew, sung to prerecorded synths 'n' sequencers, with one or more pretty people angsting and whining and pretending away on-stage.

Frank Zappa prophetically warned of the "pretty" trend many years ago. He wrote "I'm So Cute" as a result. That's all the country scene is now- pretty people lip-syncing soap-opera schlock.

Young people today are in the same situation guys like me were in around 1970. As a brass & piano musician, I thought my future lay in playing live music. The brass gigs suddenly vanished, I had to buy an electric keyboard and learn to play bass, FAST, in order to land jobs, and my last regular gig was around ten years ago. That's all she wrote. There simply are no regular live venues to keep musicians working full-time, or even part-time in many locations.

I know musicians all over the UK, Europe, Canada and the US. We're all in pretty much the same boat.

There is still some work out there. I'm in the process of buying a 23-passenger bus & trailer, the trailer to be converted into a portable stage. This, for playing the Folk, Fringe and Jazz Festivals from coast to coast. The money's poor, you only get to play part of the year, but it's that or play only a few gigs a year.

And that's pretty much what's out there.


Jesus, tell us how you REALLY feel! But I can definitely see the trend.

Myself, I am more influenced by film music and more adult contemporary stuff like Yanni, Jim Brickman, and David Lanz. My dream is to write for film and I've already scored a couple of indie shorts.

I notice in my generation a rebellion against the artificial and inauthentic and a draw back to the kind of folk and prog rock of the 1960s, but unfortunately without the musical foundation to back it up, as you mentioned. These hipsters, if you will, are exactly the kind of people who, disillusioned with the idea of sitting in a cube like their dads, might go into some quieter, artisinal field that is more rewarding and less stressful. I fervently hope to see some bearded 29 year old in a headsock showing you how to shape hammers on YouTube. These guys may be our only hope. Have you techs and rebuilders out there thought of taking on younger apprentices, maybe taking advantage of government subsidies for work study, etc?


Edited by Markarian (07/22/14 10:52 PM)
_________________________
2012 NY Steinway Model B | Kawai MP11 | Korg Kross 61

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#2305697 - 07/23/14 12:55 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
phantomFive Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/11/14
Posts: 1495
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: gsmonks
There is still some work out there. I'm in the process of buying a 23-passenger bus & trailer, the trailer to be converted into a portable stage. This, for playing the Folk, Fringe and Jazz Festivals from coast to coast. The money's poor, you only get to play part of the year, but it's that or play only a few gigs a year.

I am reminded of John Candy in Home Alone

_________________________
Poetry is rhythm.

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#2305699 - 07/23/14 01:00 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7219
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Markarian

I would love to both have more people closer to my age in this journey


If you're a good enough musician to make a living from composition, I would advise you to have as few people as possible accompanying you on your journey. Zero is the ideal number.That would include the young and the old, the retailers and the industry types, the brand advocates and the bon vivants who frequent here,

I'm always leery of the notion that buying a piano is a jounrney, a quest, an adventure, etc. A lot of the people who come here for advice use those terms. But most of those people do not play at a level where they can trust themselves. When you are trying to match a piano to your needs and taste and you are already a player, you have all the tools you need to get the job done. Those tools are on the sides of your head and at the ends of your arms. That's even more the case when you have the ear of a composer or arranger.

The time to enlist the help of others is when you have decided what suits you best. Then you can ask opinions of your choice before you commit that large sum of money that intimidates you. The more specific the question, the more helpful the answer.You can ask the techs about build qulaity and any historical trouble spots. You can ask everyone about the offered price. You can sample people's opinions of whether the brand's long-term future is viable in the face of the indsutry consolidation that is inevitable in the next decade. You can pay for a technical inspection even if the piano is new. You can ask some musician buddies to play it and give their impressions. If it's almost dialed in in your estimation, but not quite, you can communicate what it is you find lacking and see if the shop technical staff can get it there.

In this post you're basically saying" This is so tough.Help me". The only thing you'll gain from that is more uncertainty and confusion.

When you're choosing a washing machine or a dishwasher, You can't take your soiled clothes or dirty dishes to the shop to audition the machine. You have to rely on others if you want to get beyond appearance and specs. That's not the case with a piano regardless of its price range.

Keep it simple. Trust yourself to know what you want more than you trust others to know what you want.

_________________________
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#2305706 - 07/23/14 01:11 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Paul678 Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/13
Posts: 686
If Lang Lang fails to prop up the piano industry in the future, which
he apparently has at the moment, and not just in China, then you'll
see more musicians like me doing DIY work, especially the basics like tuning.

Agreed with Turandot: Trust your own ears!

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#2305746 - 07/23/14 03:44 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 864
Originally Posted By: Markarian


Myself, I am more influenced by film music and more adult contemporary stuff like Yanni, Jim Brickman, and David Lanz. My dream is to write for film and I've already scored a couple of indie shorts.


Well, that's the problem. Millennial's aren't listening to Yanni, David Lanz, or Kenny G. Maybe their [grand] parents.




Edited by michaelha (07/23/14 03:44 AM)
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#2305749 - 07/23/14 03:58 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Paul678]
JohnSprung Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/11
Posts: 1439
Loc: Reseda, California
Originally Posted By: Paul678
... you'll see more musicians like me doing DIY work, especially the basics like tuning.

Agreed with Turandot: Trust your own ears!


I do some regulation and repair, but tuning is something I wouldn't risk trying to DIY. It's just too easy to get bored and get on the wrong pin and break string.
_________________________
-- J.S.

Knabe Grand # 10927
Yamaha CP33
Kawai FS690

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#2305754 - 07/23/14 05:02 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
wimpiano Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 1386
Loc: The Netherlands
Come on guys.. this is so lame..
There has never been a big public for classical or at least serious (good) music. Ok, there where some hypes but no, the common man never went to conservatory. In reality a lot of music before NOW was crap, also in the 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's.

And yes, there's plenty of young people "Millenials" (who invents these words, seriously?) who know quite a bit of music and play it using real instruments.

Just a couple of weeks ago there was a little concert during lunch in our company restaurant by students part of the VU (university) Orchestra in Amsterdam. Those were not people actually studying music for a career, they play it because they like it. And yes there were hipsters including the beards among them.

It was fun, the average age of the public was around 35-40 meaning it also included quite some younger people. They played Schubert and so on.

Every generation thinks they're better than the generation after them.
Always the melancholy: Oh this is lost.. oh that is lost, oh this was better, oh that was better.. Give me a break..



Edited by wimpiano (07/23/14 06:29 AM)
_________________________
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#2305756 - 07/23/14 05:18 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: JohnSprung]
Paul678 Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/13
Posts: 686
Originally Posted By: JohnSprung
[

I do some regulation and repair, but tuning is something I wouldn't risk trying to DIY. It's just too easy to get bored and get on the wrong pin and break string.



Get Tunelab Pro, and it's pretty easy to tune your own piano, once you get the hang of using the hammer and setting the pins, so your tuning is stable.

If you have a reasonably young piano, with young strings, you probably won't break a string if you are careful. It does happen, but then you should learn to replace strings anyways.....

thumb


Edited by Paul678 (07/23/14 05:30 AM)

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#2305784 - 07/23/14 07:44 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: wimpiano]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: wimpiano
Come on guys.. this is so lame..
There has never been a big public for classical or at least serious (good) music. Ok, there where some hypes but no, the common man never went to conservatory. In reality a lot of music before NOW was crap, also in the 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's.

And yes, there's plenty of young people "Millenials" (who invents these words, seriously?) who know quite a bit of music and play it using real instruments.

Just a couple of weeks ago there was a little concert during lunch in our company restaurant by students part of the VU (university) Orchestra in Amsterdam. Those were not people actually studying music for a career, they play it because they like it. And yes there were hipsters including the beards among them.

It was fun, the average age of the public was around 35-40 meaning it also included quite some younger people. They played Schubert and so on.

Every generation thinks they're better than the generation after them.
Always the melancholy: Oh this is lost.. oh that is lost, oh this was better, oh that was better.. Give me a break..


That's not the issue here. The issue is the lack of jobs for working musicians. Each city used to have dozens, in some instances hundreds of clubs featuring live music. Today they're all gone. I can easily name 50 cities where I used to play that today have not one regular live venue, for ANY kind of music.

I have friends in Vancouver, Victoria, New York City, Chicago, Detroit, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Amsterdam, Montreal, Saskatoon, Regina, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Boston, Seattle, and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, NONE of whom are working as full-time professional musicians any more. The clubs are all closed, gone out of business, the whole entire scene is kaputsky.

It's usually cyclical, but this time it's different. In the 70's, brass musicians were running all over North America like chickens with their heads cut off, chasing rumours of work. When it finally dawned on them that there wasn't any, they settled where they were, hung out their shingle, and taught for a living. That's why in the late 60's, early 70's, I had trumpet teachers like Bobby Hilton, Bobby Herriot, Joe de Bruyker, Len Whitely, and so on. The only reason I had them as teachers was because there was no place for them to play any more.

At that time, the bar band thing took over and replaced the dance and club thing.

But this time, the bar band scene has come to an end with NOTHING to replace it. THAT's the difference. It's not that things have changed this time. It's that the scene itself is gone.

The kids coming along aren't playing live venues. They're making videos.

The computer/video/Interweb scene is sucking the life out of both live music and the television industry. Television itself is on the way out. There are times when our local television stations are putting on public-service commercials because there are no paid ads to fill those slots.

The Interweb is the last big venue, and it is anathema to live ANYthing.

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#2305787 - 07/23/14 07:54 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
wimpiano Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 1386
Loc: The Netherlands
I agree in that respect that the working musician is replaced by a DJ.
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#2305835 - 07/23/14 09:52 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8564
Loc: Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: wimpiano
I agree in that respect that the working musician is replaced by a DJ.

This may be a little OT, but on occasion I will get invited to play the piano for an event at the small community college where I work; not that I'm all that good on the piano, but what little I can play is legible to an extent (people can recognize the song/tune).

I get a lot of comments from the audience that they enjoyed my playing and that I was good on the piano. Fact is, I'm not really all that good on the piano, but the audience is not used to hearing someone playing live music at an event, as a general rule. So, although my playing is mediocre at best, they still find it somewhat entertaining and enjoyable.

Where is the new blood? My 10 year old granddaughter is taking piano lessons (though not from me smile ) and there will always be an interest in the piano in particular and the arts in general.

Rick
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Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel

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#2305844 - 07/23/14 10:05 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/12
Posts: 2189
Loc: Seattle, WA USA
There are young people starting careers in piano service in the USA. Probably enough to meet demand for some time. But probably not if everybody with a serviceable grand piano gets it tuned twice a year.

We are seeing a reduction in piano service support at most universities and colleges. There are signs of price competition among service providers. That should tell you something about the demand/supply curve.
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In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible

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#2305846 - 07/23/14 10:10 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Steve Cohen]
Piano*Dad Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/12/05
Posts: 10385
Loc: Williamsburg, VA
Originally Posted By: Steve Cohen
Originally Posted By: Piano*Dad
My tech is around my age, so I'm probably OK for a while. grin


I didn't think techs kept working beyond their 80s.


Payback ….. is …….. coming.

.
.
.
.

grin
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#2305847 - 07/23/14 10:11 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
BrainCramp Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/09/12
Posts: 259
Loc: USA
Markarian, some of what you're seeing is simply demographics in the US. It crosses many occupations and industries. The baby boomers are a big population, and for a variety of reasons they aren't retiring at the age and in the numbers that earlier generations did.

Originally Posted By: gsmonks
The classical music scene croaked at the same time as the avante garde jazz scene, in circa 1963. By the early 70's, all the big-name composers had died off, and as in the jazz world, there simply was no new generation to take over.

This isn't to say that no one is writing jazz and classical any longer- they are. But they're a generation of wannabees and wankers who aren't breaking any new ground, aren't doing anything original, and are more taxidermists and weekend-warriors than real musicians.

gsmonks, it sounds like you don't know anything about classical music.

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#2305875 - 07/23/14 10:50 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Beacon Chris Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/06
Posts: 448
Loc: Moscow, ID
I can only speak as a classical guy, but the big change I've seen is with commercially recorded music. Now that everything is shared on youtube, there's absolutely no reason to buy recorded music (I'm not saying this is right - it's just the way it is). However, the great opportunity as I see it is to use youtube as a promotion vehicle for live performance. My impression is that the demand for live performance is just as solid as it's ever been with young people driving the trend. I think the trick is giving the audience something that has both quality and originality - even with the trusted war-horses of music.

Only my opinion - I hope I'm right!

BC
_________________________
Musician, Singer, Teacher, Humorist, Dad...

“I never had much interest in the piano until I realized that every time I played, a girl would appear on the piano bench to my left and another to my right.” - Duke Ellington


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#2305929 - 07/23/14 12:37 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 864
Originally Posted By: gsmonks

That's not the issue here. The issue is the lack of jobs for working musicians. Each city used to have dozens, in some instances hundreds of clubs featuring live music. Today they're all gone. I can easily name 50 cities where I used to play that today have not one regular live venue, for ANY kind of music.

I have friends in Vancouver, Victoria, New York City, Chicago, Detroit, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Amsterdam, Montreal, Saskatoon, Regina, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Boston, Seattle, and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, NONE of whom are working as full-time professional musicians any more. The clubs are all closed, gone out of business, the whole entire scene is kaputsky.

It's usually cyclical, but this time it's different. In the 70's, brass musicians were running all over North America like chickens with their heads cut off, chasing rumours of work. When it finally dawned on them that there wasn't any, they settled where they were, hung out their shingle, and taught for a living. That's why in the late 60's, early 70's, I had trumpet teachers like Bobby Hilton, Bobby Herriot, Joe de Bruyker, Len Whitely, and so on. The only reason I had them as teachers was because there was no place for them to play any more.

At that time, the bar band thing took over and replaced the dance and club thing.

But this time, the bar band scene has come to an end with NOTHING to replace it. THAT's the difference. It's not that things have changed this time. It's that the scene itself is gone.

The kids coming along aren't playing live venues. They're making videos.

The computer/video/Interweb scene is sucking the life out of both live music and the television industry. Television itself is on the way out. There are times when our local television stations are putting on public-service commercials because there are no paid ads to fill those slots.

The Interweb is the last big venue, and it is anathema to live ANYthing.


I don't know if there are less opportunities today for musicians then 20 years ago, but you can't say the system is broken because it's changed and you've stayed the same. "Making videos" - you mean YouTube, is a wonderful medium and those who know how to leverage it have created opportunities for themselves that probably wouldn't have been possible without it. There are many "YouTube Stars" that I know of, some I follow. Kyle Landry as an example, Sal Kahn (not a musician though), Hiromi Uehara I believe also got a lot of great exposure through YouTube. Even Rickster here seems to have a good following on YouTube, and I'm guessing he was born after 1980 and doesn't qualify as a millennial (if I'm wrong, please forgive me).

The bar band, EDM, these are all evolutions of music. They're not any less, though some will disagree.

The Internet is sucking the life out of those who refuse to adapt and learn new things. Everyone can make YouTube videos these days, even on your iPhone. Give it a try, maybe you'll get 300,000 views and be the next Justin Beieber!
_________________________
Casio CDP-100
2012 Kawai RX-5 BLAK

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#2305962 - 07/23/14 01:23 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8564
Loc: Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: Michaelha
The Internet is sucking the life out of those who refuse to adapt and learn new things. Everyone can make YouTube videos these days, even on your iPhone. Give it a try, maybe you'll get 300,000 views and be the next Justin Beieber!

Well, I'll never be a Justin Beiber, but one of my YouTube music videos has over 650,000 views! smile

It has certainly surprised the heck out of me...

Just goes to show that entertainment and musical proficiency are not the same thing. (Musically proficient I'm not smile )

Rick
_________________________
Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel

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#2305966 - 07/23/14 01:29 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Markarian Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 325
Loc: Seattle Area
Okay, a couple of things:

First off, I'm one of those kids making videos. I have one original song with 20,000 views. Not really much to brag about if you consider some more popular musicians out there, but still I think more people than I will ever meet in my lifetime. The song was even translated into Russian and performed live in Russia.

Which brings me to my next point, gsmonks. I have almost zero interest in live performance. I do not feel confident in my ability to play consistently enough for it to be worth the stress. There is a live music scene, at least in Seattle, I've been invited to many gigs, but have turned them down because I have confidence problems. I'm comfortable sitting in front of my workstation with a MIDI controller and Kontakt open, or playing my Steinway at 3AM with only the neighbors and my partner as my audience. Even with acoustic panels, the former have said they can hear the piano clear as day. Luckily, they have expressed enjoyment, rather than annoyance. Let's see how long that lasts.

I do lament that all those big bands of the 30s and 40s are gone. I adore that sound and yes, you have now met the former 28 year old who at one point played "40s on 4" and "Cinemagic" XM channels constantly in his car on the way to class.

As for demographics and terminology, the people who come up with these terms are marketing gurus, who write books on how to sell to a particular group of people. "Millennials" or "Echo Boomers" or "Generation Y" are generally considered those born between 1980 and 1994, depending on who you ask. Some of us caught a glimpse of the Berlin Wall falling down and all of us are old enough to remember 9/11. We were raised on the Internet, have an unshakable sense of entitlement, and we are searching for authenticity in an artificial world, whatever the crap that means.

The point of this thread is not to ask for help, not to complain. I did NOT want my piano buying experience to be a journey, but that seems to be the expectation here, something to aspire to. I just wanted a F-ing piano that fit my needs and I think I found it and can hopefully get back to my life. The point of this thread is to express concern that every piano industry person I have encountered, both in sales and service, are many years older than I and it makes me worry that I will not have sufficient resources to support my instrument as I go forward as a musician.
_________________________
2012 NY Steinway Model B | Kawai MP11 | Korg Kross 61

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#2305975 - 07/23/14 01:52 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
Reading many of these threads has become a safari, rather than a journey.

wink
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Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2305981 - 07/23/14 02:12 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Paul678]
JohnSprung Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/11
Posts: 1439
Loc: Reseda, California
I have a 1929 Knabe 9 ft. grand. It has small diameter wire wound strings fairly far up the scale, and if I break one, it would be a special order, and it might not sound exactly like the rest.
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Knabe Grand # 10927
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#2305994 - 07/23/14 02:27 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7219
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Markarian

I did NOT want my piano buying experience to be a journey, but that seems to be the expectation here, something to aspire to. I just wanted a F-ing piano that fit my needs and I think I found it and can hopefully get back to my life.


Now, them is words I can understand. cool

Quote:
The point of this thread is to express concern that every piano industry person I have encountered, both in sales and service, are many years older than I and it makes me worry that I will not have sufficient resources to support my instrument as I go forward as a musician.


The resources you will need to support your instrument consist of one skilled and honest technician and a fallback position if that individual is indisposed. At least in my neighborhood there are many popular techs under 50. One thing you should take into account though is that as piano ownership continues to decline, top-notch tech services will continue to increase in pricee.

Heaven forbid that you will need industry people of the sales variety to support your craft. The only thing they can possibly do for you is convince you that your current instrument falls short of your talent and that you need an upgrade. First-time buyers of brand new pianos are so scarce that selling upgrade fever is essential to keeping things going.

The reason that you encounter so many mentally and physically old and fatigued individuals in sales is that like most industries on the decline, the piano industry fears unconventional thinking. That is true at the manufacturing level, the marketing level, the distribution level, and the retail level. Fear of change seems perverse when you consider how badly the industry has slipped, but even at the higher levels, individuals who have failed elsewhere are recycled into new positions. A distributor may leave one company in shambles, only to be re-incarnated at another. Salesmen of the 'closer' variety whose approach to selling is a complee disconnect for current consumer behavior wander from dealership to dealership trying to recreate the world of fat commissions they knew 20 or 30 years ago.

The reason for the many inquiries here about piano quests is that the majority of members here are into classical music and many of those classically-inclined members are at least as much into the instrument as the music one can make on it. They equate the perfect piano to the Holy Grail that the Crusdaers wee supposedly questing after. Some actually become footsoldiers of particular retailers carrying their banners from thread to thread. On top of all that there are a disproportinate number of AWMB's in residence here. Hence the romantic quest, journey, adventure stuff.

What the hey? In the end they get their pianos and live happily ever after at least until the upgrade itch starts. Most of the real Crusaders had less pleasant outcomes to their quest.
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#2306004 - 07/23/14 02:44 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: turandot]
Plowboy Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2332
Loc: SoCal
Originally Posted By: turandot
AWMB

What's that??

Anyway, your remarks on piano buying are spot on. I've learned the hard way. Heraclitus said you can't step into the same river twice. Similarly, you can't play the same piano twice. Yeah, you can check to make sure the serial number is the same, but the piano you buy at the shop will not be the piano that shows up at your house. Nor will it be the piano you play the next day. Pianos are organic. They are in a state of constant change. Find a good one that you can afford, stop analyzing and hand wringing and buy it.
_________________________
Gary

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#2306014 - 07/23/14 03:12 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Plowboy]
iLaw Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 01/07/10
Posts: 237
Loc: Chicago
Originally Posted By: Plowboy

... Find a good one that you can afford, stop analyzing and hand wringing and buy it.


... then start practicing.

A great performance on an old Story & Clark beats a ham-fisted performance on a Steingraeber E-272 every time.

Larry.

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#2306041 - 07/23/14 04:18 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Beacon Chris]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7219
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Beacon chris
Now that everything is shared on youtube, there's absolutely no reason to buy recorded music (I'm not saying this is right - it's just the way it is). However, the great opportunity as I see it is to use youtube as a promotion vehicle for live performance.


Hi Chris,

I'll respond to your hello here because I've had no requests from people to write apologies for them, so I'm out of that business.

Anyhey, It's nice to chat. Let's talk about Pianomadam. thumb

To be serious for just a moment, I think the opportunities in classical music are the greatest when the artist dedicates time on a regular basis to communite directly with fans. It's true that you can push the professional critics off of your stage if you let people hear your stuff for free so as to make up their their minds. But in the world of classical piano there are two camps

1) Lisitsa
2) All the rest

A slew of piano artists have gone youtube, some direct, some through proxies. But Lisitsa is the only one to use her youtube channel to regularly chit-chat with her fan base. She also reaches out directly to them on other social media. Let's face it. This is the Facebook era and everybody wants face time with those they admire. An artist who responds to little-old-me in person is hard to resist (except in your case grin) .

The phenomenon is even stronger in the visual arts. Not on youtube of course, but on Facebook and even Linkedin. People put a piee up for feedback and then get inquiries about a direct sale. Forget the number of likes. Money talks!

In June my wife was contacted by a Museum in Berlin and a curator at the San Francisco Main Public Library. Both inquiries were about purcha$ing one of her pieces. Both inquiries came through Faceobook. She got another from a museum in Moscow through Linkedin. People are linke in in Moscow? Who knew?

It's a different world out there, a little awkward for me, and my wife is a reluctant convert. But you can't argue with succe$s.

Now abou your blatant self-promotion on the apology thread

Pure gold..............no
Pure eveil.............no
Pure brass _ _ lls....yes
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#2306072 - 07/23/14 05:06 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Ha-ha . . . I hope you're prepared for a long wait.

It's good this topic has come up, because there ARE things we could be doing.

For example, back in the 70's, the guys I was playing with, and I, decided to play it smart instead of grinding it out in the bar-band scene. At some point we decided to put on our own gigs by renting halls, community centres, repertory cinemas, what have you, hire security, get a liquor license, got our friends and spouses involved, billed most of our gigs as seasonal parties (New Year's, Hallowe'en, Christmas, Easter . . .), worked it out so that we had at least one per month, and we ended up making a LOT more money. No agent, handled our own advertising, made a lot of mistakes but corrected along the way and got good at it.

A young concert pianist, whose name I can't remember off-hand (I think his last name started with a "B"), rented Carnegie Hall and promoted himself at that time, releasing his first album on which he played Mussorgsky's Pictures At An Exhibition. He went on to have a pretty good career. Michael Beroff? Something like that?

The Mnozil brass organisation is worth studying from a business standpoint. They're very popular right now, becoming even more popular as word gets around.

The point being that you have to pretty much make your own work these days. There's no venue, so you have to create one.

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#2306084 - 07/23/14 05:37 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: turandot]
Beacon Chris Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/06
Posts: 448
Loc: Moscow, ID
Turandot,

Li$it$a = gold...(perhaps green) grin

Seriously, I've not had time to do what Lisitsa has done (to that extent), but I began improving my website and youtube channel these past couple of years, and my upcoming season is much better because of it. Also, writing about music and giving pre/post concert chats that help people get to know how I'm uniquely relating to the art really works. I don't know if you've checked out Jeremy Denk, but he's the gold standard in this respect. His NPR videos are great. My take-away is that classical music is thriving in many, many places - especially mid-level community orchestras and opera companies. It's really interesting to see - also exciting.

Great to hear about your wife! That is incredible news - I'd love to see her work.

Now for Pianomadam... blush It's all Pianoworld lore now - along with the First Act superstore. cool It's a goofy biz sometimes, huh?

OK, now back to our regularly scheduled "new blood" thread! (I bow, exit stage right)

BC
_________________________
Musician, Singer, Teacher, Humorist, Dad...

“I never had much interest in the piano until I realized that every time I played, a girl would appear on the piano bench to my left and another to my right.” - Duke Ellington


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#2306198 - 07/23/14 09:48 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
phantomFive Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/11/14
Posts: 1495
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Markarian
The point of this thread is not to ask for help, not to complain. I did NOT want my piano buying experience to be a journey, but that seems to be the expectation here, something to aspire to. I just wanted a F-ing piano that fit my needs and I think I found it and can hopefully get back to my life.

If that's how much you care, go find yourself a Yamaha or Kawai and be done with it. Fine pianos, not too expensive, you won't have to worry about much.
_________________________
Poetry is rhythm.

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#2306239 - 07/24/14 12:08 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: turandot]
Plowboy Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2332
Loc: SoCal
Quote:
AWMB


Austrian Wine Marketing Board?
_________________________
Gary

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#2306260 - 07/24/14 01:28 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
phacke Online   content

Gold Supporter until November 11 2014


Registered: 10/18/12
Posts: 549
Loc: CO, USA
Originally Posted By: gsmonks

I know musicians all over the UK, Europe, Canada and the US. We're all in pretty much the same boat.

There is still some work out there. I'm in the process of buying a 23-passenger bus & trailer, the trailer to be converted into a portable stage. This, for playing the Folk, Fringe and Jazz Festivals from coast to coast. The money's poor, you only get to play part of the year, but it's that or play only a few gigs a year.

And that's pretty much what's out there.


Greetings -

It sound like you have a plan. That's good.

Two thoughts, and I am trying to be constructive here, while admitting low probability of being useful.

1) All those guys working the oil sands the next province over probably could use some entertainment.

-looking at the other side of the coin-

2) Michaelha mentioned Hiromi Uehara on youtube. But she also tours like crazy.
http://www.hiromimusic.com
And click tour.
I noticed in the major population centers of Europe, it is difficult not to miss a tour stop. Hardly anything at all in the central swath of the American continent. I take that as an indication of where the biz is.

Much like an academic marketing study, one must identify the market & customer, provide the product they want in a manner that is supported by your specific competencies.

Best wishes-
_________________________
phacke

Steinway YM (1933)
...Working on:
G. F. Händel: Suite in G minor (HWV 452)
J. S. Bach, Sonata No. 1 in B minor (BWV 1014) duet with violin

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#2306269 - 07/24/14 02:15 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: phacke]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 864
Originally Posted By: phacke

Greetings -

It sound like you have a plan. That's good.

Two thoughts, and I am trying to be constructive here, while admitting low probability of being useful.

1) All those guys working the oil sands the next province over probably could use some entertainment.

-looking at the other side of the coin-

2) Michaelha mentioned Hiromi Uehara on youtube. But she also tours like crazy.
http://www.hiromimusic.com
And click tour.
I noticed in the major population centers of Europe, it is difficult not to miss a tour stop. Hardly anything at all in the central swath of the American continent. I take that as an indication of where the biz is.

Much like an academic marketing study, one must identify the market & customer, provide the product they want in a manner that is supported by your specific competencies.

Best wishes-


Didn't mean to imply that YouTube was a substitute for live performances at all, simply that YouTube is a great way to get exposure, marketing, etc. I mean, who's going to spend money on a ticket to a live show for someone they've never heard of they're there for other reasons.

I actually believe that live performances is critical to a successful music career. Gone are the days when recording artists could make one good song, put it on the radio, and everyone had to blindly buy the whole CD with 10 other "filler" songs for $15. People either illegally download MP3's these days or listen to it for free on Spotify, etc.

Hiromi did tour the US. I saw her here in San Francisco at the SF Jazz Center I think in March or April. She toured something like 5-10 North American cities. I think she's touring a lot of Europe now because of all the summer jazz festivals. But I might agree that people in Europe do appreciate real music more than Americans, and know how to enjoy life more in general.
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#2306270 - 07/24/14 02:36 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Dara Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/18/09
Posts: 1035
Loc: west coast island, canada
There is dynamic current music happening, in all genres and new explorations.
And there are upcoming excellent piano technicians and tuners,
some of them prefer to stay in the background,
still learning their craft.

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#2306279 - 07/24/14 03:34 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: phantomFive]
Markarian Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 325
Loc: Seattle Area
Originally Posted By: phantomFive
Originally Posted By: Markarian
The point of this thread is not to ask for help, not to complain. I did NOT want my piano buying experience to be a journey, but that seems to be the expectation here, something to aspire to. I just wanted a F-ing piano that fit my needs and I think I found it and can hopefully get back to my life.

If that's how much you care, go find yourself a Yamaha or Kawai and be done with it. Fine pianos, not too expensive, you won't have to worry about much.


I don't want a Yamaha or Kawai. Just because I'm impatient and frustrated doesn't mean I don't have specific tastes. I have already bought and paid for a new instrument.
_________________________
2012 NY Steinway Model B | Kawai MP11 | Korg Kross 61

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#2306283 - 07/24/14 03:50 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: michaelha]
wimpiano Offline
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Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 1386
Loc: The Netherlands
Originally Posted By: michaelha
People either illegally download MP3's these days or listen to it for free on Spotify, etc.

I am not sure that's true.
1. I use Spotify (a lot) but it's not free (10 bucks a month) and is supposed to provide artists a steady income.
2. Illegal MP3 downloading is a hassle, especially for classical music. Itunes and comparable online stores sell quite a lot of music.
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#2306311 - 07/24/14 06:42 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
ando Online   content
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Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3604
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: Markarian


I don't want a Yamaha or Kawai. Just because I'm impatient and frustrated doesn't mean I don't have specific tastes. I have already bought and paid for a new instrument.


You have? What is it?!

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#2306342 - 07/24/14 08:35 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Piano Practice Offline
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Registered: 04/18/14
Posts: 28
Loc: MADISON, MISSISSIPPI
I may have missed it in the replies above and hopefully I’m not falling off into the weeds when I ask this… Aren’t elementary school age kids in countries in Asia, such as Japan, required to take piano? (Emphasis on the word "required".) Thus, instilling in the kids music theory, piano skills, which produces, down the road, a strong skillset for mathematics, analytical/reasoning, etc. for future engineers and doctors, plus spurring on future techs/tuners, too? I wish we had this same emphasis here in the US… Just compare our math & science scores to other industrialized countries, I believe we need some help…
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Piano Practice
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#2306344 - 07/24/14 08:38 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: phacke]
gsmonks Offline
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Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: phacke
Originally Posted By: gsmonks

I know musicians all over the UK, Europe, Canada and the US. We're all in pretty much the same boat.

There is still some work out there. I'm in the process of buying a 23-passenger bus & trailer, the trailer to be converted into a portable stage. This, for playing the Folk, Fringe and Jazz Festivals from coast to coast. The money's poor, you only get to play part of the year, but it's that or play only a few gigs a year.

And that's pretty much what's out there.


Greetings -

It sound like you have a plan. That's good.

Two thoughts, and I am trying to be constructive here, while admitting low probability of being useful.

1) All those guys working the oil sands the next province over probably could use some entertainment.

-looking at the other side of the coin-

2) Michaelha mentioned Hiromi Uehara on youtube. But she also tours like crazy.
http://www.hiromimusic.com
And click tour.
I noticed in the major population centers of Europe, it is difficult not to miss a tour stop. Hardly anything at all in the central swath of the American continent. I take that as an indication of where the biz is.

Much like an academic marketing study, one must identify the market & customer, provide the product they want in a manner that is supported by your specific competencies.

Best wishes-


You're right- the central US (and Canada) are a vacuum in terms of venues, but that's exactly the reason we should be playing them, especially the classical and jazz venues.

You might be surprised how well-attended classical and jazz venues can be in the most unlikely places. The Royal Winnipeg Ballet and the Winnipeg New Music Festival are great examples. Your first impressions is, "How on earth can this exist HERE, of all places?"

I live in rural Saskatchewan, and old-timers have often surprised me with their knowledge of classical and jazz artists who used to go out of their way to tour here. The trumpet player Mendez, for example, used to tour the prairies.

We should also be playing lesser- and least-known venues because often the people living in them are starved for something besides pop and country.

Also, if we ignore such places, we risk losing those people forever.

Bottom line- you either build a market or lose it.

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#2306346 - 07/24/14 08:43 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: BrainCramp]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: BrainCramp
Markarian, some of what you're seeing is simply demographics in the US. It crosses many occupations and industries. The baby boomers are a big population, and for a variety of reasons they aren't retiring at the age and in the numbers that earlier generations did.

Originally Posted By: gsmonks
The classical music scene croaked at the same time as the avante garde jazz scene, in circa 1963. By the early 70's, all the big-name composers had died off, and as in the jazz world, there simply was no new generation to take over.

This isn't to say that no one is writing jazz and classical any longer- they are. But they're a generation of wannabees and wankers who aren't breaking any new ground, aren't doing anything original, and are more taxidermists and weekend-warriors than real musicians.

gsmonks, it sounds like you don't know anything about classical music.


I've been studying, writing and writing about classical music, probably a lot longer than you've been alive. I began composing in the 1950's.

You're probably not old enough to know how the classical world has changed since 1963. Most orchestras today are amateur organisations that keep the genre going, but like jazz musicians are enthusiasts without being the real deal.

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#2306354 - 07/24/14 08:53 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: wimpiano]
gsmonks Offline
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Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: wimpiano
Come on guys.. this is so lame..
There has never been a big public for classical or at least serious (good) music. Ok, there where some hypes but no, the common man never went to conservatory. In reality a lot of music before NOW was crap, also in the 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's.


That is simply not true. Caruso's recordings, from 1902 to 1920, were hugely popular, for example, next only to recordings of John Philip Sousa's band music. Artists like himself were a huge draw back then. What's even more telling is that most orchestras at the time were professional organisations, not subsidised like they are today.

Jazz was the popular music of the day in the 1920's (aka The Jazz Age or Era). It remained big, with thousands of professional big-bands on the road, until the end of WWII. Classical music was likewise a big seller until the mid-1970's. Across the board, the mid-70's is considered the high-water mark for recording as well.

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#2306379 - 07/24/14 09:25 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
BrainCramp Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/09/12
Posts: 259
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: gsmonks

I've been studying, writing and writing about classical music, probably a lot longer than you've been alive. I began composing in the 1950's.

You're probably not old enough to know how the classical world has changed since 1963. Most orchestras today are amateur organisations that keep the genre going, but like jazz musicians are enthusiasts without being the real deal.

gsmonks, I'm baffled as to why you'd make assumptions about someone's age based on no information. Believe it or not, some of us on these forums do remember the 1950s and 1960s.

You may have been writing about classical music for a long time. But given that you referred to all contemporary classical composers as "taxidermists", I'd say you haven't been writing about it very intelligently.

Maybe things look different in Saskatchewan than they do here in Boston...

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#2306392 - 07/24/14 09:51 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
KurtZ Online   content
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Registered: 03/13/10
Posts: 922
Loc: The Heart of Screenland
Markarian stated his age in post #1
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#2306404 - 07/24/14 10:30 AM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
adamp88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/24/09
Posts: 155
Loc: Omaha, NE
While it may not be a tidal wave of young people entering the field, I think the piano technician community actually does have a pretty good influx of young blood. I'm 35 and know quite a few technicians around my age, and even a few quite a bit younger. The North Bennett Street School in Boston has an excellent piano technology program, the Chicago School for Piano Technology has had a great nine year run (although sadly this is its last year in operation), there's a great school in Ontario and Florida State has a piano technology program as well.

Of the people I graduated with, all are at the very least working successfully part time in the field, a few are primarily doing rebuilding work, and several others have established university jobs and are affiliated with the local Steinway stores.

If you look at the major classical music festivals (Tanglewood, Aspen, Interlochen, etc), while the head technicians are well established, the majority of the maintenance work is handled by young techs who are relatively new to the field. In addition, these young techs are making their way into the manufacturers' factories. I know that Steinway has in the past couple years brought on at least two techs both in their 30s, one as a concert tech and one in a more technical role to help spur improvements. Mason & Hamlin, being so close to NBSS, have a host of young techs working there.

There's hope out there. smile
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ASB Piano Service
Omaha, NE

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#2306459 - 07/24/14 01:07 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: wimpiano]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 864
Originally Posted By: wimpiano
Originally Posted By: michaelha
People either illegally download MP3's these days or listen to it for free on Spotify, etc.

I am not sure that's true.
1. I use Spotify (a lot) but it's not free (10 bucks a month) and is supposed to provide artists a steady income.
2. Illegal MP3 downloading is a hassle, especially for classical music. Itunes and comparable online stores sell quite a lot of music.


Spotify is a good model and hopefully it will start to reverse the trend. Although it has a very high conversion rate of paid subscribers (20%) relative to other freemium models which are typically 1%-10%, still 80% of it's users just deal with the ads. But I suppose Spotify shares the ad revenue with the artists.
http://press.spotify.com/us/information/

But this shows the record sales in the US.

1973-2009
http://www.businessinsider.com/these-charts-explain-the-real-death-of-the-music-industry-2011-2

2007-2014
http://www.statista.com/statistics/273308/music-album-sales-in-the-us/

Perhaps the ratio of paying users is much higher in the "real music" crowd since we might appreciate the artists' efforts more and/or realize they have a much smaller base than a Rihanna or Katy Perry.

For me, I listen to it for free first, if I like it I usually buy the MP3's on Amazon.
_________________________
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#2306465 - 07/24/14 01:31 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
ando Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3604
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: gsmonks
Most orchestras today are amateur organisations that keep the genre going, but like jazz musicians are enthusiasts without being the real deal.


Gsmonks, would you like to explain this remark? Suggestion: make it good.

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#2306467 - 07/24/14 01:37 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Piano Practice]
Del Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/03
Posts: 5316
Loc: Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted By: Piano Practice
I may have missed it in the replies above and hopefully I’m not falling off into the weeds when I ask this… Aren’t elementary school age kids in countries in Asia, such as Japan, required to take piano? (Emphasis on the word "required".) Thus, instilling in the kids music theory, piano skills, which produces, down the road, a strong skillset for mathematics, analytical/reasoning, etc. for future engineers and doctors, plus spurring on future techs/tuners, too? I wish we had this same emphasis here in the US… Just compare our math & science scores to other industrialized countries, I believe we need some help…

Yes.

The majority of pianos being built today are -- by a significant margin -- being sold in the Chinese market.

ddf
_________________________
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(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon

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#2306468 - 07/24/14 01:44 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: michaelha]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: michaelha
Originally Posted By: gsmonks

That's not the issue here. The issue is the lack of jobs for working musicians. Each city used to have dozens, in some instances hundreds of clubs featuring live music. Today they're all gone. I can easily name 50 cities where I used to play that today have not one regular live venue, for ANY kind of music.

I have friends in Vancouver, Victoria, New York City, Chicago, Detroit, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Amsterdam, Montreal, Saskatoon, Regina, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Boston, Seattle, and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, NONE of whom are working as full-time professional musicians any more. The clubs are all closed, gone out of business, the whole entire scene is kaputsky.

It's usually cyclical, but this time it's different. In the 70's, brass musicians were running all over North America like chickens with their heads cut off, chasing rumours of work. When it finally dawned on them that there wasn't any, they settled where they were, hung out their shingle, and taught for a living. That's why in the late 60's, early 70's, I had trumpet teachers like Bobby Hilton, Bobby Herriot, Joe de Bruyker, Len Whitely, and so on. The only reason I had them as teachers was because there was no place for them to play any more.

At that time, the bar band thing took over and replaced the dance and club thing.

But this time, the bar band scene has come to an end with NOTHING to replace it. THAT's the difference. It's not that things have changed this time. It's that the scene itself is gone.

The kids coming along aren't playing live venues. They're making videos.

The computer/video/Interweb scene is sucking the life out of both live music and the television industry. Television itself is on the way out. There are times when our local television stations are putting on public-service commercials because there are no paid ads to fill those slots.

The Interweb is the last big venue, and it is anathema to live ANYthing.


I don't know if there are less opportunities today for musicians then 20 years ago, but you can't say the system is broken because it's changed and you've stayed the same. "Making videos" - you mean YouTube, is a wonderful medium and those who know how to leverage it have created opportunities for themselves that probably wouldn't have been possible without it. There are many "YouTube Stars" that I know of, some I follow. Kyle Landry as an example, Sal Kahn (not a musician though), Hiromi Uehara I believe also got a lot of great exposure through YouTube. Even Rickster here seems to have a good following on YouTube, and I'm guessing he was born after 1980 and doesn't qualify as a millennial (if I'm wrong, please forgive me).

The bar band, EDM, these are all evolutions of music. They're not any less, though some will disagree.

The Internet is sucking the life out of those who refuse to adapt and learn new things. Everyone can make YouTube videos these days, even on your iPhone. Give it a try, maybe you'll get 300,000 views and be the next Justin Beieber!



There are many times less opportunities for musicians today. In 1978, a kid could take a few bass lessons and could be gigging, full-time, within a month, because the demand for bass players (especially GOOD bass players) was so high.

You can't tell me that anything resembling this demand exists today.

Yes, you can make YooToob videos. So what? That doesn't automatically translate into money. Regardless, people don't pay to view YooToob videos.

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#2306470 - 07/24/14 01:45 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Rickster]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: Rickster
Originally Posted By: Michaelha
The Internet is sucking the life out of those who refuse to adapt and learn new things. Everyone can make YouTube videos these days, even on your iPhone. Give it a try, maybe you'll get 300,000 views and be the next Justin Beieber!

Well, I'll never be a Justin Beiber, but one of my YouTube music videos has over 650,000 views! smile

It has certainly surprised the heck out of me...

Just goes to show that entertainment and musical proficiency are not the same thing. (Musically proficient I'm not smile )

Rick


Wonderful. And how much money has this translated into?

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#2306471 - 07/24/14 01:48 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Markarian Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 325
Loc: Seattle Area
Gsmonks,

With all due respect to your obviously extensive experience in music, you've kind of hijacked this thread and turned it into a nostalgic digression into the decline of live music over the last century, with the obligatory "You young'uns don't know what real music is!" You've provided a lot of insight, albeit with some questionable blanket statements, and I would kindly invite you to start a separate thread about it. I can't help but recall the opening lines to the theme for "All In the Family."

This thread is specifically about my worry that there are simply not enough new piano technicians and rebuilders entering the field to replace the huge slew of older techs who will at some point need to retire.

Adam, you raise a good point and I was going to mention the NBSS and the young people who are getting into their PT program! It does give me hope, but it would be nice to see these awesome techs and rebuilders with young apprentices in tow on their calls. And no, I am not volunteering--I'm far too impatient and fidgety to be a tech.

I was also going to mention the Asian market and how it is changing the industry. Most of buyers at my local dealership where I bought my original Steinway are well-to-do Chinese families, buying for their children. I have been told by several older people in the industry that East Asia is literally keeping the entire industry afloat right now. That may be true, from a retail perspective. So who is going to service these brand new Hailuns and Kawais in 30 years? Who is going to know enough about pianos to sell them to these little kids' own children in that amount of time? How will pianos be sold in the future?

Ando, I got another B. It will be here this weekend so I am understandably quite excited.
_________________________
2012 NY Steinway Model B | Kawai MP11 | Korg Kross 61

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#2306472 - 07/24/14 01:51 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8564
Loc: Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: gsmonks
Wonderful. And how much money has this translated into?

Not much, but more than I had before I posted the music video on YT... smile

Rick
_________________________
Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel

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#2306480 - 07/24/14 02:00 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
ando Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3604
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: Markarian

Ando, I got another B. It will be here this weekend so I am understandably quite excited.


Brilliant - hope you have a trouble free run with the new one. Congrats, and enjoy!

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#2306534 - 07/24/14 03:26 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
wimpiano Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 1386
Loc: The Netherlands
@Markarian: Congratulations!!

@gsmonk, let's see this from another perspective:

This might sound a bit sauer but: In the Netherlands our generation, "the Millenials", are paying for the generations before us. For example: Some recent calculations have shown that the average person born in 1980-1988 will have a nett loss of 180,000.00 EUR on taxes and pensions as apposed to the soixante huitards which have a nett profit of an equivalent or higher amount.. Everybody born before 1960 receives, everybody after 1960 pays. And still the older people are complaining that they're getting not enough pension and that there's not enough tax money going to culture and so on while they are the very wealthiest group in the Netherlands. They even founded a political party called 50+ which has only one argument: more money to people older then 50. They're the same generation that invented national debt, which we have to pay since the EU doesn't allow growth of national debt anymore.. (Nor would I want that)
This isn't exaggerated, maybe I haven't shed enough light on all aspects of the situation (yes there are also poor older people) nor do I want to make this all political but you get the point.

So, maybe it's a question of economics. One DJ per 200? 1000? 50000? people is a lot cheaper then a jazz band in a small venue. It is just economically not feasible to have so much people in entertainment..

BTW. This situation applies to the Netherlands, I don't know how it is in the US or elsewhere.

On music: They liked Caruso back then, Pavarotti was a big hit quite recent, there will always be hypes.. And I hate to say it but there is also a lot of Jazz music that I simply do not enjoy and think is crap from a musical point of view. There has always been bad music as has there always been good music.

On modern music such as atonal music: luckily the genre is dying.. It is great from an art point of view but my personal opinion is that it doesn't have anything to do with music (my personal taste).

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Schimmel 116 S ..

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#2306535 - 07/24/14 03:27 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Paul678 Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/13
Posts: 686
Originally Posted By: Markarian
Gsmonks,

With all due respect to your obviously extensive experience in music, you've kind of hijacked this thread and turned it into a nostalgic digression into the decline of live music over the last century, with the obligatory "You young'uns don't know what real music is!" You've provided a lot of insight, albeit with some questionable blanket statements, and I would kindly invite you to start a separate thread about it. I can't help but recall the opening lines to the theme for "All In the Family."

This thread is specifically about my worry that there are simply not enough new piano technicians and rebuilders entering the field to replace the huge slew of older techs who will at some point need to retire.

Adam, you raise a good point and I was going to mention the NBSS and the young people who are getting into their PT program! It does give me hope, but it would be nice to see these awesome techs and rebuilders with young apprentices in tow on their calls. And no, I am not volunteering--I'm far too impatient and fidgety to be a tech.

I was also going to mention the Asian market and how it is changing the industry. Most of buyers at my local dealership where I bought my original Steinway are well-to-do Chinese families, buying for their children. I have been told by several older people in the industry that East Asia is literally keeping the entire industry afloat right now. That may be true, from a retail perspective. So who is going to service these brand new Hailuns and Kawais in 30 years? Who is going to know enough about pianos to sell them to these little kids' own children in that amount of time? How will pianos be sold in the future?

Ando, I got another B. It will be here this weekend so I am understandably quite excited.



Don't worry so much about the future.

Live in the present. Here and Now.

The techs will be there, and if not, they will
learn quickly, and on the job. It ain't rocket science.....

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#2306541 - 07/24/14 03:31 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
wimpiano Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/13
Posts: 1386
Loc: The Netherlands
Oh and @Markarian, I do not have a single doubt that there will be enough techs and tuners in 30 years. It might be more expensive but I don't think the demand will completely die, so the supply won't either..
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Schimmel 116 S ..

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#2306548 - 07/24/14 03:36 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: BrainCramp]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: BrainCramp
Originally Posted By: gsmonks

I've been studying, writing and writing about classical music, probably a lot longer than you've been alive. I began composing in the 1950's.

You're probably not old enough to know how the classical world has changed since 1963. Most orchestras today are amateur organisations that keep the genre going, but like jazz musicians are enthusiasts without being the real deal.

gsmonks, I'm baffled as to why you'd make assumptions about someone's age based on no information. Believe it or not, some of us on these forums do remember the 1950s and 1960s.

You may have been writing about classical music for a long time. But given that you referred to all contemporary classical composers as "taxidermists", I'd say you haven't been writing about it very intelligently.

Maybe things look different in Saskatchewan than they do here in Boston...


Both classical music and jazz jumped the tracks around 1963. Neither has progressed since then. There have been no movements in either field (which pretty much merged by ca 1963) since then.

Your average well-educated classical/jazz person of today is not the same animal as existed in ca 1963. In ca 1963 you were dealing with professional individuals who were part of musical movements. Today you are dealing with enthusiasts, part-time weekend warriors, who keep up their chops, write and play because they enjoy it, but are not part of any great social and academic movement- hence the term "taxidermists". The horse is dead, but they've preserved the hide, and with the help of animatronics, are "riding" off into the sunset, having convinced themselves that the horse is alive and well.

Here is a perfect example of the corruption and erosion of the academic world:

Back in the 60's, the canon was set by the composers, who were also the top academicians of the day. In 1960 Hindemith was still alive, as was Ligeti, Khachaturian, Shostakovich, Messiaen, and several others. Walter Piston, also a composer, was putting out his books on Harmony, Counterpoint and Orchestration. Piston was something of a fruit-loop, and as he got older, his publications, especially on Harmony, got nuttier and nuttier.

What kept him in check was other academics, many of whom were his fellow composers. But when they finally all died off, he gave his nutty-ness free reign, and out came his notions of "tonicization" and I 6/4 as appoggiatura, which it is not.

Piston's theory of secondary dominants was a brilliant teaching tool, but useful beyond that it was not. At some point he went overboard, bought into his own method (he should've got out more, but instead spent his final days committing intellectual incest), and pressed for nutbar theories which have done a lot of damage and which are still widely accepted today.

I've singled out the I 6/4 as appoggiatura example for the sake of brevity, but since the 1980's have had to break too many students of this mental bad habit to count. Where analysis is concerned, where every example of a possible I 6/4 as appoggiatura you can show as "evidence", I can dig up ten more examples where it does NOT act as appoggiatura. For Piston's theory to be true, I 6/4 would have to be hard-wired into the human brain, when it is demonstrable that listening habits are a matter of bias based upon familiarity, meaning it is a learned thing. It may SEEM true to someone immersed in 19th century and earlier Harmony, but one could just as easily come up with theories that are no less nutty, based on theories of everything from secondary sub-dominants to the secret order of those who look for meaning in patterns of substituted chords that imply a whole other kind of hidden Harmony.

Wind back the clock to ca 1963, pull everyone's head out of their arse, and you had real work being done by real theorists. Ligeti's Requiem and other works managed to cross the theory-to-practice barrier and are still widely known today. This was also the high-water mark for avante garde jazz.

There have been no big unified social and cultural movements that have occurred since then. The Interweb doesn't count because it's only a vehicle, and as a vehicle, its members are all working in isolation. The term "internet culture" or "web culture" is by definition an oxymoron.

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#2306647 - 07/24/14 06:12 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Markarian Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 325
Loc: Seattle Area
Gsmonks,

Thanks for ignoring everything I said. I am going to be charitable and assume you're very knowledgeable and a tremendous resource for someone who is formally studying jazz. That being said, I can definitely say that those who are being creative on the Internet are far from working in isolation. I scored a film in Seattle with a film crew in California while their CG effects person was in Bulgaria. The Internet has a culture, a vibrant and dynamic one, and I'm sorry you feel left out of it. You can decry the decline of academia all you like, but you are sounding fairly bitter and incoherent to me from across this particular generation gap. In either case, thanks for the responses from those who actually took the time to read my OP and for your continued help. For now, things are way off track and I'm outta here.

_________________________
2012 NY Steinway Model B | Kawai MP11 | Korg Kross 61

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#2306648 - 07/24/14 06:15 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
Now, let us all enjoy a performance of 4'33"
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2306692 - 07/24/14 08:15 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
Donzo Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 03/04/14
Posts: 64
Loc: British Columbia
Originally Posted By: Markarian


I can't help but recall the opening lines to the theme for "All In the Family."



Markarian,

With all due respect you are way WAY too young to have ever seen that show.

And even if you have watched it ironically a few times on YouTube in your hipster search for "authenticity" you don't really understand it because you didn't watch it the way it was DESIGNED to be watched. On a REAL 20" TV with a curved CRT that smelled of ozone, a manual channel dial,only 9 minutes of commercials per hour and absolutely NOTHING else to watch because there was only one. other. channel!

You Millenials just have no. frigging. idea. what it was like.




Just kidding, ok, abandon thread.
_________________________
Piano: 1905 Heintzman Upright
Time in: 17 months and counting
Currently working on:
People Ain't No Good - Nick Cave
A Pirate Looks at Forty - Jimmy Buffett
Scales and Arpeggios - from the Aristocats

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#2306983 - 07/25/14 01:25 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
gynnis Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/16/14
Posts: 133
Loc: Florida, Connecticut
There has been an interesting series on PBS about new classical music being written for video games. Some of it is pretty interesting. It's being done with the internet. The composers are often in multiple cities, the orchestra is somewhere else, and the game designers in another remote location. All are communicating over the internet and working interactively. No need for a venue!

There is plenty of young talent out there, they just don't show up much in the conventional old venues. When I was young Community Concerts sponsored student tickets for $1 at some rather unusual venues. Try getting a seat at any venue today for less than $40. Ticket prices are driving the venue shrinkage not the lack of talent.
_________________________
Seiler 206, Chickering 145, Estey 2 manual reed organ, Fudge clavichord, Zuckerman single harpsichord, Technics P-30, Roland RD-100.

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#2307054 - 07/25/14 04:07 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Minnesota Marty]
Retsacnal Online   content

Platinum Supporter until Feb 18  2015


Registered: 10/11/12
Posts: 595
Loc: Northern Virgina
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Now, let us all enjoy a performance of 4'33"


Can 4'33" be performed on a parlor grand, or is a full concert grand needed to truly do it justice?
_________________________
1950 Baldwin M

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#2307056 - 07/25/14 04:08 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Paul678]
S. Phillips Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 294
Loc: Forte Farm, Lexington, KY
Originally Posted By: Paul678
[quote=Markarian]Gsmonks,


The techs will be there, and if not, they will
learn quickly, and on the job. It ain't rocket science.....


Just wanted to reply to this remark. This thinking is extremely offensive to professional technicians who have worked for years to be proficient at concert quality tuning, regulation and voicing. It takes years to become a top technician. This is a huge problem because 30 years ago a young tech could work for dealers, and tune home pianos in the suburbs to get the experience they need to start to become proficient for concert work. Now most of the work is for much more discriminating clients who are professional musicians. On the job training is inadequate because the majority of the paying clients wouldn't want someone who was just starting to learn. With dealers becoming scarce, the sea of floor stock that needs servicing is just not there for the beginning tech who is sharpening their skills.

….and I've got rocket scientists who pay handsomely for superior piano technical work.
_________________________
Sally Phillips
Piano Technician
One can always find something to improve.
2 Steinway Os, Steinway B & C, C. Bechstein A
Phillips Piano Tech
Contributor - Acoustic and Digital Piano Buyer
New Federal and State Ivory Regulations and Pianos
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#2307058 - 07/25/14 04:27 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: S. Phillips]
Rich Galassini Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 9285
Loc: Philadelphia/South Jersey
Originally Posted By: S. Phillips

….and I've got rocket scientists who pay handsomely for superior piano technical work.


Brava Sandy!

Discerning musicians are not necessarily professional musicians.
_________________________
Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
Dir. Line (215) 991-0834
rich@cunninghampiano.com
www.cunninghampiano.com

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#2307083 - 07/25/14 05:04 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: S. Phillips]
Grandman Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/18/12
Posts: 199
Loc: Usa
Originally Posted By: S. Phillips
Originally Posted By: Paul678
[quote=Markarian]Gsmonks,


The techs will be there, and if not, they will
learn quickly, and on the job. It ain't rocket science.....


Just wanted to reply to this remark. This thinking is extremely offensive to professional technicians who have worked for years to be proficient at concert quality tuning, regulation and voicing. It takes years to become a top technician. This is a huge problem because 30 years ago a young tech could work for dealers, and tune home pianos in the suburbs to get the experience they need to start to become proficient for concert work. Now most of the work is for much more discriminating clients who are professional musicians. On the job training is inadequate because the majority of the paying clients wouldn't want someone who was just starting to learn. With dealers becoming scarce, the sea of floor stock that needs servicing is just not there for the beginning tech who is sharpening their skills.

….and I've got rocket scientists who pay handsomely for superior piano technical work.


Agree wholeheartedly, Sally. And I do recognize and appreciate the skills and knowledge of an experienced and skilled tech, especially when they are as kind as you have been to me.

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#2307365 - 07/26/14 12:58 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Markarian]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: Markarian
Gsmonks,

Thanks for ignoring everything I said. I am going to be charitable and assume you're very knowledgeable and a tremendous resource for someone who is formally studying jazz. That being said, I can definitely say that those who are being creative on the Internet are far from working in isolation. I scored a film in Seattle with a film crew in California while their CG effects person was in Bulgaria. The Internet has a culture, a vibrant and dynamic one, and I'm sorry you feel left out of it. You can decry the decline of academia all you like, but you are sounding fairly bitter and incoherent to me from across this particular generation gap. In either case, thanks for the responses from those who actually took the time to read my OP and for your continued help. For now, things are way off track and I'm outta here.



Well, due to your sarcasm, I'm not going to be charitable. You've obviously either misunderstood all I said or ignored it.

There is no forward progress in music in "Internet culture". THAT's the difference. Yes, the Interweb as a thing unto itself is moving forward, but the music (to isolate that one aspect) is not.

The underlying structure of music across the board is at a standstill, and has been since ca 1963. You apparently haven't a clue as to the full import of what Academia is all about if you think you can dismiss it as unimportant or irrelevant in terms of the underlying structure of music itself. You evidently have even less understanding of social movements.

In terms of "new blood", this is just as important for music itself (the nuts 'n' bolts of what makes it go) as it is for piano makers and tuners. It would take only the emergence of a small handful of pianists to emerge as popular figures in the public consciousness to turn things around, big-time.

Case in point: rockabilly 3/4 basses with cool paint jobs are selling like hotcakes right now. They're not works of art in terms of craftsmanship and durability, but the mere presence of hot interest inevitably results in a climate in which more bass players exist, and simply by virtue of sheer numbers, a percentage of them are looking for quality, and are trying to broaden their knowledge of bass-playing, which sends them in search of better-informed teachers. In short, in some areas the acoustic bass is doing very well right now, which translates into lots of work for repairmen and technicians.

Clarinet sales were probably at their all-time peak while Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw were in their heyday. In other words, demand and public perception go hand-in-hand.

The piano just isn't a "cool" instrument right now. What it will take to turn things around is the piano-player's version of the Big Bang Theory, which inspired lots of kids to seek a career in physics.

One thing that HAS to change, in the public perception, is a shift in the notion that a grand piano is just a stage-prop for singers, something like a microphone that is just there temporarily for the purpose. There's a world of difference between that, and someone coming out on stage with a model of guitar that everyone suddenly just has to own. A good many people take a good look at the guitar and can identify it. The piano, however, for most people, is just a big, black piece of furniture. It could say "John Deere" on it for all they care.

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#2307379 - 07/26/14 01:51 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: gsmonks]
Paul678 Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/13
Posts: 686
Originally Posted By: gsmonks


The piano just isn't a "cool" instrument right now. What it will take to turn things around is the piano-player's version of the Big Bang Theory, which inspired lots of kids to seek a career in physics.

One thing that HAS to change, in the public perception, is a shift in the notion that a grand piano is just a stage-prop for singers, something like a microphone that is just there temporarily for the purpose. There's a world of difference between that, and someone coming out on stage with a model of guitar that everyone suddenly just has to own. A good many people take a good look at the guitar and can identify it. The piano, however, for most people, is just a big, black piece of furniture. It could say "John Deere" on it for all they care.



I disagree with this, due to the Lang-Lang Effect!

The piano is VERY Cool, at the moment! Tons of kids are taking lessons, and not just in China!

All these techs and tuners owe Lang-Lang some gratitude!

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#2307385 - 07/26/14 02:14 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Paul678]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 864
Originally Posted By: Paul678


I disagree with this, due to the Lang-Lang Effect!

The piano is VERY Cool, at the moment! Tons of kids are taking lessons, and not just in China!

All these techs and tuners owe Lang-Lang some gratitude!


I'm all for it if it helps more people get into the piano, even though I'm not a Lang Lang fan. One concern though is Lang Lang is a classical piano player, and classical music doesn't have much of a chance to go mainstream.
_________________________
Casio CDP-100
2012 Kawai RX-5 BLAK

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#2307392 - 07/26/14 02:53 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: Paul678]
gsmonks Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 638
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: Paul678
Originally Posted By: gsmonks


The piano just isn't a "cool" instrument right now. What it will take to turn things around is the piano-player's version of the Big Bang Theory, which inspired lots of kids to seek a career in physics.

One thing that HAS to change, in the public perception, is a shift in the notion that a grand piano is just a stage-prop for singers, something like a microphone that is just there temporarily for the purpose. There's a world of difference between that, and someone coming out on stage with a model of guitar that everyone suddenly just has to own. A good many people take a good look at the guitar and can identify it. The piano, however, for most people, is just a big, black piece of furniture. It could say "John Deere" on it for all they care.



I disagree with this, due to the Lang-Lang Effect!

The piano is VERY Cool, at the moment! Tons of kids are taking lessons, and not just in China!

All these techs and tuners owe Lang-Lang some gratitude!


Well, I wish that was true around here. There are two of us piano teachers out here in the sticks (rural Saskatchewan), and neither of us has a single student. This, in an area where almost every second home once had a piano, there were dozens of piano teachers, and three or four piano tuner/technicians. If it weren't for the piano-tuner/technician living in the next town, several of us would be in big trouble in terms of tuning and maintenance.

Kijiji is full of local pianos being given away for free.

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#2307475 - 07/26/14 07:14 PM Re: Where is the new blood? [Re: michaelha]
Paul678 Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/13
Posts: 686
Originally Posted By: michaelha


I'm all for it if it helps more people get into the piano, even though I'm not a Lang Lang fan. One concern though is Lang Lang is a classical piano player, and classical music doesn't have much of a chance to go mainstream.


Well, he's enjoying Rockstar-like status, so
that's not bad for a classical musician.

He's also recorded with Metallica!

That's about as mainstream as any classical musician can get!

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