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#922855 - 01/23/05 07:22 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Rick Clark Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/04/03
Posts: 1810
Loc: North County San Diego CA
Truly, this party is destined to be a 'classic' for many reasons such as the hospitality of our gracious hosts the Ashmans and the many wonderful surprise visits from industry people and of course the guest of honor Frank Baxter.

I was slightly staggered (in a good way) when Rich Galassini mentioned that he checked out his computer files to realize that he and I have "known" each other (over the internet) for 10 years now, going back to R.M.M.P. days. Yet it was only on Saturday night when we finally got to meet in the flesh. And it was a great, happy meeting, like long-lost brothers.

But there is another special thing about the party that I wanted to mention, and that is the generosity of John Elliott from Geneva International who unfortunately was tied up (working like a dog) and couldn't make it to the party, but made a quite generous donation to the ends of furnishing the party with many of the needed supplies. It was a sumptuous spread from food to beverage and many attendees and our hosts made great contributions to the spread, but a lot of it was from John Elliott and Geneva International (U.S. distributor of the hosts' wonderful Petrof III) - something most of the partygoers didn't know. This was very gracious of John and Geneva, I think. I just wish he could have been there.


Rick Clark
Rick Clark

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Piano & Music Gifts & Accessories (570)
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#922856 - 01/23/05 07:49 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
kenny Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 7051
Thank you John.
It was a very elaborate and scrumptious table or two of decadence.

Hmmmm. . .
That gives me an idea.
I wonder if Cecil has a spare CC or two laying around to show off at my next piano party?????

#922857 - 01/23/05 08:32 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
cathys Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/03
Posts: 917
Loc: Virginia
It sounds like a memorable evening for all and quite a houseful!! Can't wait to see the pics.


#922858 - 01/23/05 08:46 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Palindrome Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/01
Posts: 3917
Loc: Chicago, IL USA
Well, the best I can do is a shot of the way my car looked in the O'Hare remote parking lot at 6 AM Sunday morning, when I got back.

But seriously, folks, it was a great party. Thanks, Joy, for arranging it, thanks, Jackie and Phillip, for hosting it, and thanks to the Geneva International (Petroff wholesaler) folks for their help!
There is no end of learning. -Robert Schumann Rules for Young Musicians

#922859 - 01/23/05 08:55 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Joy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 550
Loc: Encinitas, CA

Brian (BriGuy65) was among the first to sample Jackie's wonderful Petrof grand.

While Brian played Chopin, the kitchen was a beehive of activity. Rick (aka "the Continental") surveys the unfolding of our movable feast. That's our hostess Jackie checking her lasagna while JohnC and Palindrome look in on Penny's preparations.

Among the goodies were pork and leek dumplings with hoisin sauce, sesame egg noodle salad with black mushrooms, chives and cilantro, beef roll-ups, chow fun with white fish, chili, Penny's Sensation Salmon-and-Canteloupe Creation, empanadas, spanokopita, green beans with garlic, crudities, fried crispy noddles, plus fabulous desserts. Obviously, JohnC (clutching Czech beer in homage to Jackie's Czech piano) and Palindrome came to the right place.

#922860 - 01/23/05 09:18 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Joy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 550
Loc: Encinitas, CA

Time to eat! Here's BriGuy, Larry Fine (one of our surprise guests), Mynor (Penny's spouse), and Philip Ashman (Jackie's spouse).

It's great to see so many of our regulars in person. Here's Del Fandrich, Rich Galassini, Frank Baxter, and me. Rick says 'Watch the hand, Frank!'

The salmon was marinated in teriyaki sauce before it was grilled and skewered into the canteloupe.

#922861 - 01/23/05 09:46 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Joy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 550
Loc: Encinitas, CA

More surprise guests: Steve Cohen checks out the California Shiraz with Ori. There was a wide array of wines, beers, soft drinks and bottle water to complement our multicultural feast.

We were all happy to welcome Jonathan Finger (Klavierbauer) to our So Cal fold.

Rich Galassini spoke on behalf of all of us in expressing our appreciation to Frank Baxter for all his efforts in creating Piano World. Then he presented Frank with a special gift put together by the So Cal group and other friends of the Forum.

#922862 - 01/23/05 09:59 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Joy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 550
Loc: Encinitas, CA

Frank was very moved as he read our gift card. Some of the signatories included people who were unable to attend the party.

Looking on as Frank read the card aloud were Mrs. Fandrich, Larry Fine, Del Fandrich and Ori.

Time out for some magic! "Watch me turn this diamond into a ruby to match your dress!" Steve Cohen announces. And he DID!

#922863 - 01/23/05 10:17 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Jeff Bauer Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/03
Posts: 1740
Loc: Los Angeles
A very special thank you to the Ashmans for hosting the party. You have a wonderful home in a wonderful town (I know, I used to live there... I do miss that part of Orange County). The piano was a well oiled machine ready for any and all that would play on it.

Another special thank you to Joy for personally inviting me and for bringing other esteemed guests as well.

I arrived around 7:30 and feel very privileged to have visited with almost everyone at the party. When I first arrived, I must have knocked on the door for about 2 minutes. I saw people through the large glass door, but I didn't want to just walk in (which is what I ended up doing). I think I walked in mostly unnoticed, and managed to settle in for a minute before meeting everyone...

Rick Clark was the first person I met at the party, and we got a chance to speak for quite some time. The moment I started speaking with Rick, I felt right at home. Terrific guy.

John C and I discussed his B and and his wandering long A (recently spotted on Ebay). I will make sure to mention our conversation to DH and look for that backstage pass in the mail.

I enjoyed hearing about Ori's side of the business, especially being so close to Steinway Hall.

Frank B gave me some insight to how this website came about, and his previous involvement with the retail side of music. I was amazed to hear that he doesn't own an acoustic piano, but you would never know this the way he played on the Petrof III.

Steve Cohen is a really talented magician, but was almost made by a 2 of hearts and an (5?) year old. I didn't get enough time to speak with Steve, but the few times we spoke gave me the impression that he is a really charismatic and genuine individual.

Del was a blast to speak with. I learned about his (almost involuntary) involvement with an infamous 12 ft. piano, and the stun on the Pearl River rep's face to whom he told about it.

Jonathan and I shared a few retail war stories. I thanked him for teaching me to create an ö on the keyboard. A real treat to meet you Jonathan.

Rich Galassini was extremely friendly and wonderful to chat with. I didn't know much about Cunningham Pianos, but I tend to put them on a pedestal in my mind now that I have met Rich. 17 years... wow.

Larry Fine was also a joy to speak with. I got the skinny on the origins of his book. I wish I had more time to talk with him (for free that is).

Joy was exactly as her name sounds. She is a real socialite. It was a pleasure to meet with you Joy and I look forward to doing so again.

Penny told me about an interesting correlation between her father and my boss' sister (no, it's not what you think). I didn't realize she was a T.O. resident prior to moving to O.C. It was very nice meeting with you Penny.

I was surprised I hadn't met Kenny before given how close he lives to our stores. Very down to earth, and I enjoyed our conversation very much. Kenny, I do hope you visit our new OC store when it opens. Stop by the Santa Monica store sometime if you are ever in the area.

Briguy played the piano very well, and I was shocked to hear he only took it up 3 years ago (I hope I got that right, so many people, I may have this mixed up now).

I don't recall meeting Palindrome, which is a shame. I would have really liked to have spoken with him.

To everyone at the party, I had a wonderful time. I look forward to the next meeting!
Jeff Bauer | Keyboard Concepts

Yamaha | Schimmel | Bösendorfer | Knabe | Restored Steinway

My soundcloud page

#922864 - 01/23/05 10:47 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Joy Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 550
Loc: Encinitas, CA
Don't go away—there's more!

Jeffrey (Gearhead) wowed us with an original composition. Although he has attended our piano parties before, this was the first time he shared his music. He followed up that piece with an arrangement of "Love Story." We look forward to hearing more at future So Cal parties.

What's a So Cal Piano Party without our trademark Piano Pile-Up Portrait? Left to right, here are Jackie's close friend (who checked in to see what a success the party was), Jackie and Philip Ashman, Kenny, Jonathan, Penny, Frank B, Quetzal, Brian, JohnC, Angeleno Jazzer (I can't believe how he slipped in quietly and blended right in, chatting everyone up. Look at how relaxed he is here! He gets my vote for El Socialite Supremo ), Rick, me, and Mynor (standing behind Rick).

Sorry we missed corraling Palindrome (who had to catch a Chicago plane), Jeffrey, Klavierbauer, Steve C, Ori, Rich G, Larry Fine, the Fandrich's and several others under the piano ---- but next time, we WILL!

\:\) :p \:D ;\)

#922865 - 01/23/05 10:57 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
JohnC Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/02
Posts: 1672
Loc: Lower Left Coast
I too would like to express my thanks to the Ashmans for opening their beautiful home to us all. It was a terrific evening.

It was really great getting to meet all the out of town clebrities! We all know traveling on business can keep one busy. Thanks to all of you for taking time out of your busy schedules to be there. Your are a great bunch of folks. I sure hope to get to see you all again some time.

It was of course great to see some of the old faces again and a few new ones (Gearhead and Jeff aka AJ).

And lastly I can't tell you how badly I wanted to ask Larry Fine why he didn't bring Moe and Curly, but I bit my lip and didn't. \:D But Larry, if you're reading this would you please bring them next year? Nyuk, nyuk,nyuk! ;\)
There are few joys in life greater than the absence of pain.

#922866 - 01/23/05 11:02 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Ori Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/20/04
Posts: 1729
Loc: Stamford CT, New York City .
It was great meeting EVERYONE at the party!!!
All that "performed" did so beautifully, although my favorite was the short "comic relief" and Steve's magic show.
I was "snowed in" as my flight was cancelled due to the storm back east and was quite down...I never imagined that after arriving to the party I'd be happy to have stayed another day \:\)

Frank, Rich, Steve and I came straight from the NAMM show, where we "abducted" Larry Fine.
There was never a question about him coming with us as he was simply surrounded and dragged out of the show (Rich is a big guy) ;\)
Driving back, Larry said that he too had a great time...and since he isn't posting here I thought I'd let everyone that attended the party know.
I guess we are simply as nice a bunch as anyone could expect from a group of Internet oddballs ;\)

Special thanks to the Ashmans for hosting, and to Joy and Penny for organizing.
I also must apologize for leaving in a hurry, especially to Penny that was playing at the time.
Please forgive me for leaving in the middle of your performance, but the "guys" were running out and with my flawed navigational skills and lack of local roads knowledge I could have ended up in Mexico (actually it doesn't sound so bad...oh well, maybe next year) \:\)
Ori Bukai - Owner/Founder of Allegro Pianos - NY and CT.

One can usually play at our showroom:

Bluthner, Steingraeber, Estonia, August Forster, Haessler, Kawai, Steinway, Bosendorfer and more.


#922867 - 01/23/05 11:14 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Axtremus Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/03
Posts: 6195
Great pictures!

Nice to put a few more faces to PW screen names. \:\)

Joy... I was expecting to see a long hair/pony tail guy in the pictures... what happened? ;\)
www.PianoRecital.org -- my piano recordings

#922868 - 01/23/05 11:28 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Piano World Offline

Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 6070
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Just got back, need sleep:-)

The party was fantastic!
Our hosts and the organizers did an incredible job, couldn't have asked for better.

And yes, the card and gift from the members floored me.

It was wonderful to finally meet so many friends.

Many thanks to Penny and her family for allowing me to crash at their beautiful home, and for those "worlds best" pancakes:-) And to Kenny for the ride to the airport (and the backup plan if I got stuck).

I'll write more after I've had some sleep.


- Frank B.
- Frank B.
Founder / Owner / Host
Find Us On:
Skype: PianoWorldDotCom
My Keyboards:
Estonia L-190 w/ ProRecord, Yamaha P-80, Estey 1895 Pump Organ, Harpsichord (kit), Clavichord (kit), Bilhorn Telescope Organ c 1880
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
Invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!

#922869 - 01/24/05 06:22 AM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Fan of the Bösendorfer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/17/04
Posts: 176
Loc: NYC
Looks like great fun--Frank, you've really created a true community! A wonderful thing.

#922870 - 01/24/05 06:28 AM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
apple* Offline

Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
wow oh wow... it must have been a wonderful evening.. so happy for those of you who did attend
accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Ă•un (apple in Estonian)

#922871 - 01/24/05 07:44 AM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Nina Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/01
Posts: 6467
Loc: Phoenix, AZ
De hair, boss, the hair! It's gone! \:D \:D

Looks like a great evening. I'm bummed I couldn't be there.

Thanks for posting the pictures!


#922872 - 01/24/05 08:19 AM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
kenny Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 7051
Joy, great pics.
Tell Rick not to worry about that hand he can see.
Worry about the ones he can't see. \:o

#922873 - 01/24/05 08:45 AM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Terrytunes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 1249
Loc: Tewksbury MA
Thank you for the informative reviews and pic's! It certainly is enjoyable to see everyone having a grand time! Glad all of you had the chance to meet Richard, I mean, Frank!! (hehe)!!

Kudo's to Kenny and Frank for displaying their PW name tags!!

For those of you who plan to attend future gatherings/events and would like to forgo the self-stick image, in favor of a PW "keepsake" name tag, please PM me and I will gladly forward one of these little treasures to you.

How could anyone want to miss out on owning one of these little gems! \:D

#922874 - 01/24/05 03:17 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Rich Galassini Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 10404
Loc: Philadelphia/South Jersey
Better late than never,

Thank you for the hospitality from all. The party was a great time. Frankly, I felt like you were all old friends that I haven't seen in person for a while. I never once felt that uncomfortable "new people' feeling.

I know Keith Kerman and Norbert really wanted to be there - I hope they make it next time.

Jeffery (Gearhead) had better play more next time. Rick and Joy, it was a joy to spend time with you. Ori, Steve, Angelino, Del, Larry, and Frank, you are the reasons this industry is so much fun. Your knowledge and passion are unmistakable. I am learning from each of you. Jackie and Penny, great hostesses! And JohnC. and Palindrome - I wish we could have chatted more.

Kenny - I missed you totally! Come to Philly!

Also I am sorry so many of us left so early. I had a redeye to catch home and it was my fault. I wish we could have spent the entire evening there. That evening was not about business, it was not about obligation, it was not even about pianos. It was about spending time with friends who I have genuinely come to care about.

And Terrytunes - I want a tag! ;\)
Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
Check out the Science Channel's "How Its Made" featuring our piano restoration:

#922875 - 01/24/05 04:42 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10819
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Well!!! I hardly know where to begin.

I hadn’t planned to come to the party as I had a dinner appointment with a very close industry friend. He’s a Schimmel rep (I am not a dealer) and dumped me “just because” one of his best dealers invited him out! The nerve! \:D I ran into Rich G. about 5:00PM and he reminded me of the party and invited me to come with him. About 10 minutes later, we ran into Larry Fine, and Frank B. Frank, Larry and I didn't know each other but we immediately hit it off. What a treat! Great guys.

Rich (a long time buddy)had this neat rental SUV! It had a GPS (with what Rich kept calling a “sexy voice”) telling us where to turn)! We arrive just before 7.

Great party!! I got to spend a few minutes with almost everybody there….comparing have I had pictured them and the reality. Those who played the piano were wonderful. I had delightful conversations with so many people! It was a real blast. I even provided the “novelty” act!

Rich, Larry and I had just done three days at NAMM. Those of you who haven’t been there can’t imagine. It is exhausting at best! So, we had to leave early. Additionally, Rich actually got out on the red-eye out and into a foot of snow in Philly. But I’ll let him tell that one!

Thank you all!!! And a special thanks to Joy for being it together! \:\)

It was a magical night in more ways then one!
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.

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

#922876 - 01/24/05 06:09 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 15185
Loc: Surrey, B.C.

All you have to do is become an even greater[/b] Schimmel dealer!!

Then, at least you could dump him!![/b] \:D

Also we should send a plane next time to get Larry F. from down South, Cherokee country!

The man is overdue.

If Larry comes... I guarantee everybody[/b] will be there.

Including California's own Mr.Schwarzenegger himself perhaps......

norbert \:D \:D
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642 www.eliteheritagepianos.ca Edmonton, Alta dealers for Estonia,
Brodmann 780-405-8908

#922877 - 01/24/05 09:10 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
GearHead Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/25/03
Posts: 91
Loc: Southern California
Originally posted by kenny:
Joy, great pics.
Hi Joy

Just like Kenny, many thanks for the great PICs.

Wished that some of us could stay longer for the traditional pile-up photo op especially the good folks who had to catch a flight out. In my case, my kiddo was getting so hyper and we needed to get her out before she starts creating a mess for Jackie.

Again, THANKS A MILLION for arranging this

#922878 - 01/24/05 11:56 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
Del Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/03
Posts: 5490
Loc: Olympia, Washington
Yes, it was a great party. Thanks to all of you who worked so hard to make it happen and make it successful. The food was delicious, the surroundings grand and the music superb.

It was nice to be able to connect a few names to faces.

Barb and I had a wonderful time — more than made up for one cancelled flight (a soft drink can flushed down the forward toilet), a broken-down rental car (and an 80 mile ride in the cab of the tow truck) and one missed flight (an impossible line at a badly managed and chaotic security checkpoint).

Thanks to all who worked so hard to bring it off.

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

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

#922879 - 01/25/05 12:44 PM Re: ~2005 So Cal NAMM Piano Party!~
KlavierBauer Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/06/02
Posts: 3773
Loc: Boulder, Colorado
Well, sorry I'm so late to the reviews section, but I didn't get back to the office (and the computer) until this morning.

I had a wonderful time meeting all of you.

Rich, it was a pleasure to put a name with the face. You are so friendly in person, and I got the impression that we would get along very well.

Steve, thanks for the magic show, and you too seemed very friendly in person.

Angelino, I enjoyed meeting you and swapping war stories as well.

Rick and Joy: Thank you both so much for the personal invitation to the party. You both made me feel very welcome there, and I sincerely felt like we were old friends meeting after a long hiatus.

Ori played wondefully (haven't played those variations in awhile, I might have to drag that music back out... you made it look so easy!) I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to meet you in person, but you played very well, and seemed to be smiling quite a bit so I'm sure we would've gotten along as well.

Kenny, it was so nice to finally meet you in person. You're someone who I feel like I've connected with on these forums because of the depth of some of the discussions we've had. I feel like we've never been able to fully understand each other partially because we've never met face to face. Well I really enjoyed meeting you, and truth be told was looking forward to it all night. Thank you for your conversation, and your beautiful playing (it was really very nice).

Jackie & Husband (I'm sorry I forgot his name already). Thank you both so much for opening your home to a bunch of potentially dangerous internet weirdos! You have a beautiful home, and a beautiful piano. I know we all enjoyed being there. You were both so down to earth, and gracious. It was truly a joy to meet you both, and I felt very comfortable with you both. Tell your husband he's got a connection next time he wants to come out for some skiing! \:\)

I know I've met you before at some point, but I haven't seen you recently and it was a pleasure to speak with you both at the show, and at the party. I'm glad you were able to make it!

Of course it was a pleasure meeting you, and you're just as I pictured you. Smiling, gentle, and playing agressively on the piano. I would like to second all of the thoughts and emotions from the card Rich read to you. Your forums are truly wonderful, and beneficial to us in many ways.
Thanks for giving us a reason to throw a party and grow friendships.
There were others that I met who I didn't know as well from the forums. But you were al so friendly, it was truly a wonderful evening and I enjoyed meeting EACH and EVERY one of you.
Penny, I really enjoyed finally meeting you, and thanks for helping to arrange such a fantastic party!
You're all welcome in Colorado any time, and I sincerely hope to see some of you on "my turf" sometime!

Whoever made those salmon-on-sticks-thingies rocks! They were Soooooo good!

Sorry I just keep going on and on, but I don't want to leave anyone out. I had a great time, and I'm sorry it took me so long to finally sit down and play something. Afterward I felt like I should've played a bit more since you were all so friendly... oh well, perhaps next time.

Thanks again!

I'll try to post the few pictures I have a bit later when I'm not "on the clock".
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