Frank's New Piano

Posted by: Piano World

Frank's New Piano - 09/05/11 04:09 PM

For all of you who have been patiently waiting for me to reveal (admit?) the brand of my new piano, this is the thread.

For those who insisted they already know what it is, and couldn't resist telling everyone, shame on you for trying to ruin our fun. For those who claimed to know (and the few who actually did) and chose to go along with the game, thank you for playing along.

For those who were reasonably sure they guessed right, the answer will be revealed shortly in this thread.

And finally, for those who have no clue what I'm talking about, I've been stringing people along (pun intended) for quite some time now. Mostly because the game was fun, but also partly because I just didn't have the time to put this together correctly. Now Kathy and I are making the time.

I will start with pictures of my piano in its new home in my music room. I will then backtrack and share with you pictures and details of my adventure selecting the piano.

Here she is sitting at the far end of my music room...


A full length shot viewed from tail to front


A long side view (before I moved it around)...



Shot at night, Kirby the Wonder Dog Guards the New Piano...



And now for the shot you've all been asking for (and yes, those are my hands)...
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.



And a View Under the Hood showing the signatures of Dr. Indrek Laul, his Dad Venno, and the head of piano production at Laul Estonia Pianos in Tallinn, Estonia (story to follow)



And with her blanket on...



(throw is available in our Online Store if you're curious)

Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/05/11 07:05 PM

And now for the story behind the story (or as Paul Harvery used to say "And now for the rest of the story").

It all began at the NAMM show in Anaheim (Jan. 2011). I was making my usual rounds saying hello to friends old and new, and playing pianos whenever I got the chance.

We (Kathy and I) had stopped by the Estonia Piano booth, which as everyone who attends NAMM knows not only contains lovely pianos, but also the most comfortable chairs in the show:-)

I sat down and played one of the Estonia pianos for a while. When I stopped Indrek (Dr. Indrek Laul, owner of Estonia Piano company) came by to chat. He complimented me on my playing, I mentioned that it was somewhat of a challenge for me to play a real grand as I only have a digital piano at home.

He couldn't believe "Mr. PianoWorld" didn't have a real (acoustic) piano at home. He said that just didn't seem right, I agreed. We talked more about it and how we might fix the problem. Bottom line, we came to an agreement that worked for both of us, and meant I'd finally get to have a real piano in my home.

Here we are enjoying the Estonia Booth comfortable chairs...


On top of that, Indrek knew we were planning a European Piano Tour with a group of forums members for June 2011, so he invited us to visit the Estonia piano factory in Tallinn before starting our tour.

Kathy and I accepted, and my sister and her husband agreed to meet us over there (they were joining us on the tour as well).

And so the adventure begins.

On May 31 Kathy and I boarded a plane in Miami, 22 hours 3 plane changes, and 4 airports later we landed in Tallinn, Estonia. My sister Barbara and her husband Larry left a day earlier because they fly standby, and beat us to the hotel in Estonia (but not by much).

Indrek picked Kathy and I up at the airport and took us to our hotel, pointing out some of the sights as we drove.

Thursday June 2 we made our first visit to the Estonia Piano Factory where they had 3 pianos all ready for me to try.


Arriving at the Estonia Piano Factory (that's Indrek's Dad Venno waving. Venno by the way is a famous choir conductor and instrumental in getting a beautiful music school constructed in Tallinn)



Chatting with Venno Laul (Indrek's dad who overseas factory operations).


Indek Laul telling me I have 3 pianos to choose from, and that they are going to leave me alone to make my choice.


The View Outside the Estonia Factory Window...


Me trying out the pianos...


The three pianos...


Frank & Kathy with the Chosen Piano


Indrek, Frank, Venno (Indrek's dad), and the head of Production...


Kathy, Frank, Barbara (Frank's sister), Larry (Frank's brother-in-law)


Indrek & Frank with chosen piano



CONTINUED BELOW....
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 01:28 PM

Touring the Estonia Piano Factory...





Stringing Area


Winding Bass Strings


Brace Yourself


Rims with Braces


Plate Home (plates are curing)


Lid, note there are no seams where the veneer curves over the edges.


Additional factory pictures will be posted later.
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 01:39 PM

While we were in Tallinn, Estonia we toured the area courtesy of Indrek and his Dad.

They were very gracious hosts, and obviously quite proud of their country and their city. Thanks to their connections we got to see some behind the scenes sights, experience wonderful live music performances, and tour the old city with a private guide (Indrek's cousin, a professional guide and interpreter) who did an amazing job.

I'm posting a few pictures below, I'll try to follow up with more pictures and stories of our visit to Estonia soon.
I can tell you all four of us would go back in a heartbeat if we could.

Part of the huge wall and fortification surrounding the hill overlooking old Tallinn. Built in medieval times (as was much of the old city).



Old Town Tallinn




















Additional pictures of Tallinn and Estonia Piano later.
I will also post some videos of me playing the new piano.

After our visit to Estonia we headed for Hamburg, Germany where
we met up with the rest of our European Piano Tour Group








Posted by: PianoWorksATL

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:10 PM

Cheers! Thanks for all the wonderful photos and story.

I'll be sending that $1 very soon. smile
Posted by: ChatNoir

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:14 PM

Congratulations on your wonderful new grand. Imagine, an Estonia. I would never have guessed......
Great pictures from the factory and Tallinn, I never got to see it in sunshine, but even in the pouring rain, it was delightful.
May you enjoy your fine instrument for many, many years to come.
Posted by: Keith D Kerman

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:18 PM

Congratulations!

I was on the phone with Indrek Laul while you were choosing your piano. It took all of my will power to keep my pie hole shut!
Posted by: Monica K.

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:20 PM

Congratulations, Frank! The reveal was worth the wait. Your photos were lovely. It makes me wish I could visit Estonia some day.

If you have the chance, I'd love to hear more about how you decided among the three possibilities. Were they very similar and it was basically a matter of very slight preferences? Or did you perceive a bigger difference that made it easier to choose?
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 02:20 PM

An inspiring, intriguing, interesting and wonderful thread, Frank!

Thanks for posting the pictures along with the narration (the rest of the story laugh ).

Congratulations again on your most excellent Estonia grand piano! I’ll look forward to the videos of your playing the piano. thumb

All the best! smile

Rick
Posted by: terminaldegree

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 02:24 PM

Congrats, Frank - nice piano!
Posted by: JimF

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 02:32 PM

Congrats, Frank. As a very happy Estonia owner I know you will love your new instrument. I also went straight from a digital to the Estonia and can assure you after a month you won't believe how different it feels. Enjoy.

(oh, and I think I guessed right - er... well, at least one of my guesses :grin )

Edit to add that I too would enjoy hearing about choosing among the three. I spent almost all day at Cunningham going back and forth between two L190's and still couldn't decide which I liked better even though they were clearly different. Three would have driven me mad!
Posted by: Lluís

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 02:40 PM

Finally! Congratulations! Now its time to change your signature!
Posted by: Piano World

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:41 PM

Originally Posted By: Keith D Kerman
Congratulations!

I was on the phone with Indrek Laul while you were choosing your piano. It took all of my will power to keep my pie hole shut!


Thanks Keith,

Indrek mentioned he had been on the phone with you.
I told him I thought you'd be fine keeping my little secret :-)
Posted by: lilylady

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:53 PM

FINALLY!

Such a great adventure for you and Kathy to find the piano of your dreams.

I now no longer need to find an enticement to visit hot and steamy Florida - I found it!

May you enjoy your Estonia forever!
Posted by: Steve Cohen

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:57 PM

Originally Posted By: Piano World
Originally Posted By: Keith D Kerman
Congratulations!

I was on the phone with Indrek Laul while you were choosing your piano. It took all of my will power to keep my pie hole shut!


Thanks Keith,

Indrek mentioned he had been on the phone with you.
I told him I thought you'd be fine keeping my little secret :-)



I spoke to Indrek at NAMM and again in New York a month or so later. He told me of your decision. (He was deservedly quite proud that you chose an Estonia.)

Keeping the secret was a challenge. The only person I told was Larry Fine and I swore him to secrecy!

Congrats on a great instrument and a great series of threads!
Posted by: Pianolance

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:57 PM

Geez Frank, and I thought it was a Rippen. Boy was I off! Seriously, congratulations on what appears to be a stunning instrument. Nice job on the photo essay by the way.
Posted by: lilylady

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 02:59 PM

Oh - and what is the story behind choosing THE ONE OF THE THREE?

WHY THAT ONE?

edit -

if it took this long to find out the ONE, I am sorry to ask, WHY was it THIS ONE....this might takes months to hear the answer!

giggle giggle!





Posted by: apple*

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 03:07 PM

Originally Posted By: Piano World
.
I can tell you all four of us would go back in a heartbeat if we could.



do you mean the five of us? smile
Posted by: apple*

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 03:09 PM

Frank you are such a gracious host to keep all of us piano lovers together and have so many topics to discuss. You deserve this wonderful piano and I am ecstatic for you.

Enjoy yourself and thank you! (now that I am getting paychecks again I'll renew my membership).... after I get my piano tuned.
Posted by: TeriLyn

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 03:25 PM

Wonderful! My gut feelings proved correct, at least this time anyway! blush

Enjoy...........I for one understand why Estonia was your choice, they make a fine instrument!

Best wishes, Teri
Posted by: piqué

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 03:27 PM

congratulations frank!

and to think it all began with you fooling around with building a website 'way back in the dawn of the internet age.

see where following your passions gets you? smile

may you and your estonia have many happy years together.

and the factory and scenes of talinn look wonderful. what a dream to get to visit there.
Posted by: Axtremus

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 03:58 PM

Congratulations on the new piano! thumb
Posted by: Thrill Science

Re: New Piano - 09/07/11 04:05 PM

Congratulations! Great photos, a beautiful piano, and a cute dog.

But those curtains! laugh
Posted by: master88er

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 04:12 PM

Congratulations Frank! It just proves you are indeed a man of discerning taste smile
Posted by: mikeheel

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 04:20 PM

That's a really cool story. Thanks for that and the pictures. I'd also be interested in what you thought playing the three different Estonias and why you chose the one you did.
Posted by: Plowboy

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 04:39 PM

That's a nice piano, and a way cool way to pick one out.
Posted by: MrMagic

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:03 PM

I have to admit that I was a bit put off by the endless non-information, however I congratulate you for your new piano!

Searches for "our" pianos often make interesting stories, but what a wonderful opportunity to choose it right at the factory, especially in an exotic land such as Estonia!

I played many many pianos in my search, and the Estonia was the most wonderful sounding piano I have played - ever!

Here's wishing you many years of playing bliss!
Posted by: casinitaly

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:17 PM



Congrats on your new piano - it is a beauty for sure! May you have many happy years of making music together!!!

And thanks for the pics - It was fun to see the various stages of piano building, and to see shots of Tallinn, what a beautiful town.

p.s....I too am curious to hear the story behind choosing 1 out of the three!
Posted by: markjpcs

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:19 PM

Congratulations Frank!

Now you can be a full member at Estonia World!

http://www.estoniaworld.com/

What model is that gorgeous hunk of piano?
Posted by: jazzyprof

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:27 PM

Frank, what a lovely piano and what a wonderful production with all those pictures! Congratulations on your new Estonia. May she (and Kathy!) bring you many years of great joy.
Posted by: apple*

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:45 PM

Originally Posted By: markjpcs
Congratulations Frank!

Now you can be a full member at Estonia World!

http://www.estoniaworld.com/

What model is that gorgeous hunk of piano?


please wait 3 months for the answer
Posted by: Strings & Wood

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:46 PM

Great story Frank! It is easy to see the family resemblance in you and Barbara. I loved the shot of the group with the "Head of Production" to the right. His demeanor clearly shows the pride and determination of his position. Beautiful setting and city.

I am happy that you were able to find your instrument and the journey ranks at the very top of all of the "Piano World" piano selection stories.

Looking forward to hearing a bit more of the selection process...I know, we are pigs about such stuff! smile
Posted by: Jebaraj Samuel

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:48 PM

Congratulations Frank on the Piano. Lovely photos of Estonia and your family.
Posted by: Piano*Dad

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 05:49 PM

Way to go, Frank! May you have many years of enjoyment.
Posted by: squonk

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 06:03 PM

Delurking long enough to say CONGRATULATIONS to Frank!
Posted by: Legal Beagle

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 06:05 PM

Congratulations and best wishes. May you savor every note.
Posted by: AimeeO

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 06:25 PM

Frank, congratulations! She's beautiful.

AimeeO
Posted by: DanLaura Larson

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 06:47 PM

Congratulations on your wonderful new piano.
Posted by: Rotom

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 07:02 PM

Yes!!!!!!

Well done, you really dod keep us waiting! laugh

Congratulations, it's a beauty! Make music to your hearts content!

(BTW, what's it like inside a piano factory?) I've always wanted to know...
Posted by: Stephen Lacefield

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 07:02 PM

I thought it was the world class E11enburg...
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 07:05 PM

Thank you for the kind words everyone. It was quite an adventure I can tell you that.

Over the years Indrek and I've become good friends, by the time we left Estonia I felt like we'd become family.

This was my first trip to Europe too, but I certainly hope it won't be my last.

Now ... a few more Tallinn pictures, and a little more to the story.

Catherine the Great's Summer Palace in Tallinn, Estonia


An inside shot


Indrek Laul playing an Estonia piano inside the palace


I play "Kathy's Song" inside Catherine the Great's summer palace (a piece I wrote for Kathy based on us playing together as kids, losing touch around age 12 or 13 and finding each other again a couple of years ago). For which I got a standing ovation from guests touring the palace (mainly because there was no place to sit).




Some more of Old Tallinn (note there are no cars in the old town section. I love that).
















Posted by: JeanieA

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 07:33 PM

Oh....those shots inside the palace took my breath away! What a wonderful journey, both literally and figuratively, to your new piano. Congratulations!
Posted by: sleepingcats

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 07:55 PM

Congratulations! Your Estonia grand is beautiful and so is the country. Great photos and story, with a happy ending, the way it should be.
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 08:05 PM

Thanks for the pics. Enjoy, Estonia is an excellent choice.
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:13 PM

Now I'll try to answer the question many people have been asking. How I chose "the" one.

It was not an easy choice by any stretch of the imagination.
First because I'm quite frankly not that good of a pianist, second because all three pianos were wonderful, and third because I'm used to playing a digital piano, so this was all new territory for me.

I considered asking Indrek to play them for me, but decided against it until the very end. He's an accomplished concert pianist and a top 100 graduate of Julliard. I'm a mostly self taught old rock and blues player with sketchy technique and near zero theory knowledge.

I had the luxury of knowing we weren't being rushed and that I had my support group with me (Kathy, my sister, and my brother-in-law).

Weeks prior to our arrival Indrek had asked me what type of sound I was looking for, and how I wanted the piano(s) voiced.
I've never been asked that before because I've never been in a position that would warrant asking me, not even when I had my own music store.

It isn't an easy question to answer. I compare it to trying to explain to someone how you want something to taste.
I did the best I could. It's one of those things you can't necessarily explain, but you know it when you hear it :-)

I like a bell-like tone in the upper register, a full-bodied round tone in the middle, and a rich but not intrusive depth in the bass section. And oh by the way, I'd like sprinkles with that.

Indrek made note and passed the information on to the people at the factory. He then made sure he arrived a few days before me to make sure everything was set.

Now this being the Piano World Piano Forums, many of you have experienced the pleasure of trying new pianos as you search for the one. In spite of my 40+ years associated with the piano industry, and being the founder and host of Piano World, this was my first time!

It was very exciting, but also a bit nerve racking.

I tried to remain calm, moving methodically from piano to piano playing the same pieces with the same expression.
No problem, I like them all. Just send me all 3 and I'll send back the two I don't want :-)

Within the first hour I'd pretty much narrowed it to two pianos. Not because there was anything wrong with the third one, but it just didn't "speak" to me.

The other two were a different story. It was like trying to choose your favorite child.
After a couple of hours Indrek and his dad came to check on us. They wanted to show us some things in Tallinn (including getting us front row seats to some incredible concerts). So we decided there would need to be a day two.
Which is why the pictures in the factory show me in different clothes.

I mentioned that I was down to two, but one of them had a couple of bass notes producing odd overtones on sustained notes. Any of you who have hung around the forums any length of time know new pianos are often prepped by the dealers when they get them, much like new cars.

The pianos I was playing were freshly minted and although they were certainly set up and tuned, they hadn't been subjected to the fine adjustments a good dealership will make.
Indrek called a technician into the room, they both listened and agreed they heard what I described. The piano would be worked on that night.

Day two back in the factory, the odd overtones were gone.
I played one piano, then the other, then the first one.
I had my sister play them both while I listened with my eyes closed, not knowing which one she was playing.

I played them with the lid open, and the lid closed.
Played hard rock and soft ballads, my one classical piece (1st movement of the Moonlight Sonata), a little jazz, ragtime, some blues, and my own pieces.

I was pretty sure I'd decided. That's when I picked up the house phone and dialed Indrek's office, I asked him to come up to the room. When he and his dad arrived, I asked Indrek to play the two pianos I'd narrowed it down to.

He played a few minutes on each, it was still the one I had decided upon earlier. The decision was made.

I had Indrek, his dad, and his head of production sign the plate.

Model L-190 # 7326 now lives in my music room.
Welcome home baby!
Posted by: piqué

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:24 PM

what a beautiful city! and what a great story. kudos to indrek for righting a great wrong--mr. pianoworld was long overdue for a real acoustic piano.

frank, how long did it take to get it shipped? and did you set it up at home yourself? or did you call in a tech?
Posted by: sophial

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:25 PM

Congratulations, Frank!! I'm sure it was worth the wait. Wishing you many happy hours and years playing your beautiful new Estonia.

Sophia
Posted by: Plowboy

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:27 PM

Nice. What I'm thinking here is that a double wide with an Estonia, is far, far better than a mansion without!

Good priorities, in other words. thumb
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:37 PM

Originally Posted By: piqué
what a beautiful city! and what a great story. kudos to indrek for righting a great wrong--mr. pianoworld was long overdue for a real acoustic piano.

frank, how long did it take to get it shipped? and did you set it up at home yourself? or did you call in a tech?


Thanks pique'.

It arrived in the states July 20, about seven weeks after I chose it.
Then had to make its way down to Florida, where it arrived at the movers on July 29.
They delivered it Aug. 1. The movers put it together.

I removed the action packing, checked the regulation, and tuned the piano myself.
So far it hasn't needed any regulation. I brought it to concert pitch on the first tuning, played it for a couple weeks and tweaked it again. I'm having some guests over Sept. 18th so I'll tune her up again before then.

At this point I don't think it will need any voicing, but we'll see after a few more months.
Once the tuning has settled in (it holds nicely now, mainly minor unison tweaks) and the piano is fully acclimated I'll decide if it needs any voicing. If so, I'll have to bring someone in, I'm a pretty good tuner, but I'm no voicer.

As it is now, I keep looking at it and reminding myself it's really mine.
I get up in the morning and go to the music room (ok, after I walk Kirby). I say good morning to her and play a few tunes.
The last thing I do before bed is play it again.

Now I just need to get people to drop by to see/hear/play her.
To me half the fun is sharing, and anyone who knows me knows I love to play for people.
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:37 PM

Originally Posted By: Plowboy
Nice. What I'm thinking here is that a double wide with an Estonia, is far, far better than a mansion without!

Good priorities, in other words. thumb


Well said Gary, and I'd agree :-)
Posted by: AlphaTerminus

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:44 PM

Wonderful, congrats, Frank. You deserve it!
Posted by: piqué

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 09:45 PM

Quote:
Now I just need to get people to drop by to see/hear/play her.


so when is the inaugural piano party? smile
Posted by: HwyStar

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 10:54 PM

Congrats Frank! The Estonia's I have played have sounded wonderful and I am sure they set you up with the best of the best!

It's Time to update your signature!
Posted by: liszt85

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 10:58 PM

Awesome! Congratulations.
Posted by: TX-Dennis

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 10:59 PM

Congratulations, Frank! I suspected from the recordings that it was an Estonia, but wasn't certain. I have yet to play one of these wonderful instruments, but I have heard quite a few recordings. Yours has that Estonia sound. An excellent piano for an excellent player. Thanks for posting all the wonderful photos of Estonia. They are beautiful.
Posted by: RickG1

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 11:16 PM

Frank, Congrats!!! I got to play an Estonia at Rich's store in Philly a while back. A beautiful piano. Many, many happy years of playing.
Posted by: apple*

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 11:37 PM

pianos do settle and i think become what you want to become by how you play them.. hard to describe.
Posted by: Pauljk

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/07/11 11:46 PM

Congratulations, Frank! It's beautiful! Thanks for sharing the photos and story.

May you make many years of beautiful music together. :-)
Posted by: Ken Knapp

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 12:05 AM

Congrats Frank! What a wonderful piano. You deserve it!
Posted by: ChickGrand

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 01:47 AM

Quote:
...I got a standing ovation from guests touring the palace (mainly because there was no place to sit)...


grin

Congratulations, Frank! thumb
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 04:02 AM

Hi Frank,

'Frank Bruster, Baxter or something like that' also bought an Estonia piano they told when I was over at the factory on July 22nd ....they did not say what model though.

At the spot I did not realize what 'Frank' that might have been: some famous American pianist I did not know, a well known media figure like Jay Leno ...as I did not want to disclose my ingnorance to Venno and Indrek I did not ask any further!

It was only when you opened your thread on the forum and you showed a picture of the demo room at the factory that I realized they were talking about 'the' Frank Baxter of PWF and that I posted "I know this room, I've been there" without saying I was at the Estonia Piano Factory in July.

Anyhow, enjoy your 190 for many years to come! smile

Btw, you could have saved me a lot of hassle taking all those pictures from the old town Tallinn should I have known you have shot so many nice one's!

schwammerl.
Posted by: jens4711

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 06:01 AM

Congratulations, great piano! You certainly deserved it.

And it was also worth the wait for us to see smile
Posted by: Mark R.

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 06:04 AM

Frank,

I'd like to add my name to the long list of congratulants (here's hoping this is an English word... wink )

By the way, looking at the factory pics, it pains my woodworker's eye to see all that beautiful veneer plastered over with black or white paint... But that's another story, not for this thread.

Wishing you many hours, days (nights), weeks, months, years of happy playing!

Mark
Posted by: Bunneh

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 07:46 AM

Congratulations and many years of joy from me as well! smile
Posted by: Hop

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 09:41 AM

Congrats on your new Estonia! Many others here have praised it, and I hope you like yours just as much or more.

Hop
Posted by: wouter79

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 02:35 PM

Congratulations Frank and thanks for the nice pics and story!

Can we also hear it somewhere?
Posted by: Jethro

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 03:25 PM

Ha ha hah! Never in a million years would I have guessed it would be an Estonia!

As I said in your last thread, you really deserve it and if Indrek Laul gave you a great deal on a 190, you run with it and don't look back. It is an exquisite piano with a wonderful tone. While I'm sure the circumstances surrounding your choice is all just one lucky coincidence wink it IS what you deserve given all your site has done for revitalizing the Estonia Piano brand name.

As for Indrek Laul, he looks like a really nice guy and a shrewd business who knows what he's doing. I'm about 1 month away from opening up a private practice and I am indeed shaking hands with important people and the movers and shakers of my industry- because that's what smart businessmen do. As they say, "it is what it is".

Congratulations again Frank and have many many years of enjoyment with your new piano!
Posted by: gryphon

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 05:55 PM

Originally Posted By: Jethro
Never in a million years would I have guessed it would be an Estonia!
Some of us would have (and did). laugh

Nice piano, congratulations!
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 07:57 PM

Frank, congratulations to your new Estonia grand!

A very special piano - for a very special guy!!

Norbert thumb
Posted by: BeeLady

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 08:46 PM

Congrats on the new beauty!!! What a wonderful story to go with!!! Enjoy it in good health!
Posted by: Ori

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 08:51 PM

Originally Posted By: Piano World
Touring the Estonia Piano Factory...








Lid, note there are no seams where the veneer curves over the edges.




Frank,

Congratulations on your new beautiful Estonia! thumb
As I mentioned, the floor at the Estonia factory's selection room was an unmistakeable giveaway.

Interestingly, the pictures you took above were of a special veneered Rosewood Estonia piano that was being made for me (yes, I checked with Indrek to make sure this was indeed the piano I recived).

You'll be pleased to know that this piano also arrived safely in the states and already found a loving home with a wonderful family! smile
Posted by: DFW

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/08/11 10:13 PM

WooooHooooo!!!!!! Congrats!
Posted by: Glenn Treibitz

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 02:26 AM

Congratulations Frank.

I knew this secret and kept it all of this time. If you remember we were in the Estonia both together at NAMM. I could see the glint in your eyes as your were playing the Estonia pianos. This is a glint that those of us who sell pianos know well.

May you have many years of joy from your new piano!
Posted by: Mark R.

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 04:04 AM

Originally Posted By: Ori
Interestingly, the pictures you took above were of a special veneered Rosewood Estonia piano that was being made for me (yes, I checked with Indrek to make sure this was indeed the piano I recived).


Ah, I sigh in relief. That veneer wasn't plastered over with paint after all. My bad for making that assumption! Thanks for clearing this up.

Do you have a picture of the finished piano, perhaps? I'd be very interested to see how it turned out from its raw state... (I'm a total sucker for beautiful veneers.)
Posted by: Bunneh

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 04:45 AM

Originally Posted By: Mark R.
Originally Posted By: Ori
Interestingly, the pictures you took above were of a special veneered Rosewood Estonia piano that was being made for me (yes, I checked with Indrek to make sure this was indeed the piano I recived).


Ah, I sigh in relief. That veneer wasn't plastered over with paint after all. My bad for making that assumption! Thanks for clearing this up.

Do you have a picture of the finished piano, perhaps? I'd be very interested to see how it turned out from its raw state... (I'm a total sucker for beautiful veneers.)
I 2nd that, would love to see some pictures of this beauty!
Posted by: R_Dorothy

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 05:14 AM

An Estonia, huh? They're okay I guess.....

Haha just kidding! Congratulations on an amazing piano! Piano recordings now, please!
Posted by: Rotom

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 05:48 AM

Uh, I think frank has already posted a fair few recordings of his piano, both on YouTube and PW. Sounds really good, though laugh
Posted by: Kevin_dup1

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 09:50 AM

Congratulations -- and what a wonderful story!

Kevin
Posted by: apple*

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 10:05 AM

Originally Posted By: Glenn Treibitz
Congratulations Frank.

I knew this secret and kept it all of this time. If you remember we were in the Estonia both together at NAMM. I could see the glint in your eyes as your were playing the Estonia pianos. This is a glint that those of us who sell pianos know well.

May you have many years of joy from your new piano!



it's because they are so incredibly resonant. I get quite irritated at the pianos I play on weekends because they just don't 'ring'.

(and i guessed too).
Posted by: Pam T

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 11:58 AM

It's beautiful!!! Congratulations - I know you will enjoy it!!!
Posted by: MrHazelton

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 12:10 PM

Congratulations Frank!
Posted by: Aliwally

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/09/11 01:44 PM

I always would say to myself, "Well, Frank uses a digital." I can't say that again. Super Nice Piano. Congratulations!!!
Posted by: Terrytunes

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 12:26 AM

where are my tissues... I'm so choked up with happiness for you! After all these years a musical dream comes true for such a deserving person. This has to be the best story of a piano purchase on PW!! Congratulations to you, my friend!! Wishing you many years of musical happiness in your new acoustical world!!
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 02:22 AM

Frank:

After your recent trip to Europe, who would have been the runner up?

Norbert
Posted by: Joe Chicago

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 04:33 AM

Congratulations on a beauty of a piano. What a great experience you've had. Thoroughly enjoyed the thread.
Posted by: Artur Gajewski

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 09:55 AM

Frank,

Too bad I didn't know you are coming to Tallinn, as I am from Helsinki I could have gone to Tallinn to meet you smile

About the piano factory in Tallinn, is is possible to visit it for tourists or what is a special deal? I would love to visit the place next time I go to Tallinn.
Posted by: kathyk

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 01:35 PM

What Terry said! I am so, so happy for you, Frank. It's like a fairy tale. And now, about that piano party . . . whistle
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 01:46 PM

Thanks for the kind words everyone, I'm loving my new piano.

Terry & KathyK, any chance you'll be at the Cape party?

Speaking of piano parties, we're having a very informal (few local friends) party next Sunday (18th). But I'd love to have some piano forums piano parties.
All depends on who can get here.
Posted by: BB Player

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 02:30 PM

Really beautiful piano Frank, appreciate both the back story of its selection and the beautiful pictures.

Estonia just got added to the list of places I'm going to visit.
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 03:08 PM

Originally Posted By: BB Player
Really beautiful piano Frank, appreciate both the back story of its selection and the beautiful pictures.

Estonia just got added to the list of places I'm going to visit.


Thanks Greg.
We can't wait to go back to Tallinn.

I'm hoping to put together another piano tour for 2013 (if we get enough interest).
Would love to have it include Estonia and Italy, it's a matter of logistics and expense.
Posted by: KeysAngler

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 03:09 PM

That's a beautiful musical instrument ... I'm glad for you!
Posted by: Carol I.

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 08:20 PM

Congratulations, Frank, from both John and me. It's a fabulous piano.
Posted by: piqué

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 09:25 PM

Quote:
All depends on who can get here.


hmmmm. make it for late january or early february when it is 25 below here and i bet i can find a good excuse. wink
Posted by: gerg

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/10/11 10:14 PM

He couldn't believe "Mr. PianoWorld" didn't have a real (acoustic) piano at home. He said that just didn't seem right, I agreed. We talked more about it and how we might fix the problem. Bottom line, we came to an agreement that worked for both of us, and meant I'd finally get to have a real piano in my home.

Yes, I'll say that's wrong!

This is a treasure that you've snagged, and this problem has been fixed in spades... Absolutely fantastic, gorgeous, wunderbar!

My heartfelt congratulations, Frank. Your own private "Piano Row"! wow

Now go practice! laugh
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 01:03 AM

Quote:
Now go practice!


Frank is a far better pianist than is willing to admit or leads up to!

I've seen him play Moonlight sonata, Blues and Boogie - all at once! [or in short sequence...]

Norbert
Posted by: Arctic_Mama

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 04:37 AM

Lovely piano! I'd adore having an Estonia, they are beautiful instruments. It is a wonderful pictorial and story, too!
Posted by: Rotom

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 08:59 AM

Are you going to change your ******* line in your signature anytime soon?
Posted by: Frito

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 09:40 AM

Congratulations! Wishing you many, many years of happiness and enjoyment with your new Estonia!
Posted by: Bob Newbie

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 10:36 AM

It's a Beauty Frank!..with the lid up the wood blends perfectly with the oak floors...and now for the bad..
Frank "Jergens Lotion" for the hands will work wonders...
smile (just kidding!)
Posted by: stephano88

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 05:22 PM

wow what agreat story so cool. i love how connected to this piano you are and the visit to the factory and autographs is so cool

how very very cool
is your music room also set up for recording ?if so what kind of recording set up do you use.
Posted by: j&j

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 07:26 PM

Congratulations Frank! It's beautiful. So you chose the one furthest from the camera, but which model is it? I can guess which size you bought but it would be great to let us know for sure and you will have to post some full length recordings on the new baby. It would also be fun to know why you chose the one you chose.

Congratulations again, many of us are green with envy!
Posted by: NFexec

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 10:08 PM

Originally Posted By: j&j
Congratulations Frank! It's beautiful. So you chose the one furthest from the camera, but which model is it? I can guess which size you bought but it would be great to let us know for sure and you will have to post some full length recordings on the new baby. It would also be fun to know why you chose the one you chose.

He answered all that in an earlier post - try backing up to his more recent posts and you'll see the answers!
Posted by: Gary Allen

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/11/11 11:12 PM

Congrats on your new Estonia "Big Boy" Model Piano and welcome to the Estonia Fraternity! All of us Estonia owners are now standing just a little taller and prouder that you have seen fit to join us! 50,000,000 Elvis Fans can't be wrong and neither can you--Great Choice...Enjoy It!
Posted by: EltonRach

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/12/11 11:27 AM

MrPianoWorld - great to see a piano lover, a pianist and a lovely instrument come together. Choosing your instrument at the factory is really special indeed.

For those of us who don't have the time, or the money, or the freedom to do what you did - we share the joy vicariously through your lovely stories and photos.

To me it's really special that the maker of the piano saw fit to put right MrPianoWorld's acoustic piano gap in his life. That alone - makes the piano maker special. That it's a top quality instrument as well is sheer bonus.

Please put up some YouTube clips of your playing on that instrument when you're settled.
Posted by: MonticelloDreams

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/12/11 10:52 PM

Thanks for sharing the story and all those fantastic Pictures... The piano is just gorgeous, Congratulations! wow
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/13/11 03:31 PM

Questions asked earlier: Do I have a recording setup in the room?
Answer: no. All I have right now is an HD Q3HD Zoom recorder (it's pretty good for a small handheld though).

Question: What model is it?
Answer: It is an Estonia L-190 in hi-polish ebony.


A few new pictures of the Music Room as it slowly comes together (having the first small gathering this Sunday).


And before anyone jumps on me about the sunlight pouring in, I only opened the curtains to shoot the pictures.
There are actually two layers of curtains (the ones behind the color curtains are room darkening/heat blocking), and behind them are light blocking shades. The windows themselves are tinted double pane argon gas filled (keeps out heat and harmful rays).









Again my thanks to everyone for their kind words.

I hope to see some of you at the Mason & Hamlin Piano Factory tour in October, and/or at the Cape Cod Piano Party (Oct. 8).
Others I'll catch up with at NAMM in January, or at another gathering, party, or tour.

And if you're down this way (soutwest Florida, between Tampa & St. Petersburg), let me know.
Posted by: Rich Galassini

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/13/11 06:05 PM

Dear Frank,

A Hammond XK-3 AND an Estonia 190??

(You are officially my new hero) laugh
Posted by: Strings & Wood

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/13/11 06:57 PM

That is a nice setup, Frank. The expansion looks good. thumb
Posted by: mikewu99

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/14/11 12:21 PM

Originally Posted By: Rich Galassini
A Hammond XK-3 AND an Estonia 190??

Frank:

You need to re-arrange so that the piano keyboard and the Hammond/digital keyboards are facing each other so you can do the full Keith Emerson and play both at once...

BTW, what about the mysterious set of numbers you gave as a hint in the original thread? Some of us apparently figured out the latitude/longitude part correctly (or close enough), but what about the rest of the numbers?
Posted by: Brad

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/14/11 12:36 PM

Originally Posted By: mikewu99

You need to re-arrange so that the piano keyboard and the Hammond/digital keyboards are facing each other so you can do the full Keith Emerson and play both at once...


Then all you need is a "Monster Moog" to do the full Emerson!

(Great pics and thanks for the story)
Posted by: ZoeCalgary

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/14/11 04:45 PM

Congratulations on the beautiful new piano! Thanks for sharing all those pictures and the story. I sat in awe reading/looking! I am happy for you!
Posted by: Clavier Übung

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/15/11 12:47 AM

Excellent!

After an agonizing wait, it is indeed a pleasure to peruse this wonderful thread of the "Great Reveal" at length. What a beautiful piano, and a charming story to boot! The pictures are magnificent, and help to tell the story so well.

I hope you are proud of your new piano- it is a fine instrument, and a well-deserved one at that. Congratulations!
Posted by: novelinda

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/15/11 09:46 PM

Frank and Kathy,

Congratulation!!

Your new Estonia is Beautiful. How do you get anything else done with such an instrument in the house?

Are you planning on bringing some Flip videos to the CC party so that we can all hear it as well?

Loved all the stories and pictures leading up to the final choice.

Linda
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/16/11 12:13 AM

Thanks Linda,

Who said anything about getting anything else done? :-)

Yes, I hope to make a couple of videos before we head up for the Cape Cod party.

Speaking of which, I need to catch up with Ed & Roberta, they haven't answered my email yet.

See you in October!

Best,

Frank B.
Posted by: Gorm Laben

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/16/11 12:50 PM

Nice, Frank. Congrats! Looks like a fun trip to Eastern Europe. I also enjoyed the video of you meeting Indrek at NAMM.
Posted by: A441

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/17/11 10:17 AM

Frank and Kathy

Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful adventure and making us feel as if we were there with you all.
Your new Estonia....aint it grand!!!

ps Roberta and Ed are due back today from their cruise.

Best wishes
Jerry
Posted by: Dara

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/18/11 11:57 PM

Congratulations on your new piano Frank!

Hopefully you've already been able to get in some serious playing smile on your beautiful new instrument.

I imagine it to have a wonderful sound and touch. I really liked the ones I was able to try out in my piano search. I was offered a great deal on a new one but it was still far beyond my budget when I was on my piano search 3 years ago. I also imagine it is great to experience going to the country of origin and witness the factory and manufacture, picking out your own piano while there, developing friendship with Indrek and family, and meeting so many interesting people along your piano journey and adventures.

I'm sure you have some very interesting stories to tell.
Best wishes and joy with this new beauty in your life.


Cheers, Dara
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/19/11 02:00 AM

Considering Estonia was the new brand we adopted some 14 years ago at a time we were laughed out of town.

Yesterday a new customer and now proud Estonia owner of this piano told us he saw a 14 years old Estonia used as 'repellant' by someone else in town.

Of course we all know it's Frank who's got the final laugh in this matter.

*Repellants* don't seem to do such good work or last forever.

Norbert
Posted by: Plowboy

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/20/11 12:06 AM

That looks like a very happy music room!
Posted by: jollyroger

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/22/11 05:28 PM

Great thread and great pics Frank. Congratulations and all the best!
Roger
Posted by: apple*

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/26/11 09:07 AM

Mr. Piano World (I like that).... for not doing anything, someone sure is a good housekeeper.. your house is so neat.

Would you like to borrow several kids for a while?
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/26/11 04:46 PM

Originally Posted By: apple*
Mr. Piano World (I like that).... for not doing anything, someone sure is a good housekeeper.. your house is so neat.

Would you like to borrow several kids for a while?


Thanks Apple, but the advantage of living alone is that I can keep the place relatively neat. I have considered spraying Endust on Kirby though, considering he's like a four legged dust mop.

Kathy thinks I'm OCD and ADHD, which explains why I seem to always be straigtening things up but never seem to finish :-)
Posted by: apple*

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/27/11 10:25 AM

so that's NO on the kids?
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/27/11 10:49 AM

As much as I appreciate the offer I'm going to have to pass :-)
Posted by: apple*

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/27/11 11:04 AM

but the shoes and jackets... you'd get to pick them up and scrape off the mud. oh well. i love my kids.. i'd miss them if they were gone.
Posted by: Ken Knapp

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/29/11 11:21 AM

Originally Posted By: apple*
but the shoes and jackets... you'd get to pick them up and scrape off the mud. oh well. i love my kids.. i'd miss them if they were gone.


My middle daughter had the habit of leaving her socks wherever she decided to take them off. My wife cured that by putting them in her purse! laugh
Posted by: TX-Dennis

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/29/11 10:48 PM

Originally Posted By: Ken Knapp
Originally Posted By: apple*
but the shoes and jackets... you'd get to pick them up and scrape off the mud. oh well. i love my kids.. i'd miss them if they were gone.


My middle daughter had the habit of leaving her socks wherever she decided to take them off. My wife cured that by putting them in her purse! laugh


Getting a bit OT here . .. but . . . I wonder if that would work with my wife's shoes.

Nah, There are too many to fit into her purse. grin
Posted by: Jame334

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/30/11 03:18 PM

It's wonderful that you enjoyed our little country. Did you go to the tower of St.Karl's? An excellent view of Tallinn opens from there.

Fun fact:The windows that says "Noodid" is the only store in Estonia that specializes in music scores, to my knowledge.
Posted by: Piano World

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/30/11 03:50 PM

Thanks Jame334, we were quite mesmerized with Tallinn, particularly loved the old town.

Thanks to the generosity of our hosts we were able to take in a couple of wonderful concerts, one was in a huge old church in the old town section. I believe it is used primarily for concerts and events now.
Loved the acoustics.
Hope to get back to hear the organ there sometime. There was an organ concert series coming up but we weren't going to be there for it.

I even got interviewed by the local tv station. They were actually interviewing the musicians (from Russia) who had just put on the concert, but Indrek (Laul) mentioned who I was and why I was there, so they interviewed me for a few minutes, fun.

Of course the fact that I was there to choose my piano made it that much more exciting.

We will let you know when we return so we can meet.

Best,

Frank B.
Posted by: Hakki

Re: Frank's New Piano - 09/30/11 04:16 PM

Congratulations!!

I wish you many years of enjoyment with your lovely Estonia.

regards,

Hakki
Posted by: Newman

Re: Frank's New Piano - 10/01/11 12:55 AM

Congratulations on your piano. A great story.
Posted by: Publishing Guy

Re: Frank's New Piano - 10/01/11 10:18 AM

Congratulations Frank--I love Estonia pianos. I almost bought one myself a few years ago!
Posted by: analogdino

Re: Frank's New Piano - 10/01/11 05:06 PM

Great thread, read it all... and belated congratulations! (I don't get here often enough!)
One minor question, I'm speculating that your music room might be just a bit "lively" as I see many reflecting surfaces... a larger carpet and a few wall hangings might do wonders.
Another comment: your (old and orphan?) digital piano appears to have large speakers - good to see that. Audio has been a hobby horse of mine for years and I play a digital... but, of course, wooden grand pianos are the best if you have the resources (space, cash and good techs on call)... or the skill and diy.
Cheers,
Roger
Posted by: Plantmom

Re: Frank's New Piano - 10/03/11 10:52 AM

Congratulations! I love the story, the photos, and the new piano! May you make beautiful music on your new Estonia.

Bea
Posted by: NancyM333

Re: Frank's New Piano - 10/03/11 06:20 PM

The Piano World Newsletter alerted me to this great story, and I am really glad it did. What a wonderful piano--Frank, you definitely deserve this great instrument!

Nancy
Posted by: Calin

Re: Frank's New Piano - 10/15/11 07:46 AM

Hey Frank, congratulations not only for getting a nice piano, but also for having such a pleasant experience buying it. Travelling to the factory and meeting the people who make the instrument is always interesting.
Posted by: cscl

Re: Frank's New Piano - 11/18/11 07:44 PM

I just came across this thread and I'm glad I did. I went to all those places in May 2008, including the factory tour, the Catherine Palace, etc. That was a wonderful trip! It's good to be reminded and see the pictures of the factory, etc.

Enjoy the Estonia. I've had mine for 4 years and love it.

NB: I will offer slight correction. This was Catherine I's Palace, the wife of Peter the Great, not Catherine the Great. Catherine I also has the prettiest palace around St. Petersburg bearing her name as well.