I am a piano technician, that means I tune, repair, rebuild & have gone to school & furthered my education about pianos. How they are built, who built them, when was the Golden age of piano building in this country. Initially I learned piano tuning & Repair as a way to work my way through college (I had a stepfather who was a piano tech). By the time I could make a living at it I had a family & a going business that I enjoyed. Unlike most of the others in my business I am NOT a musician. I play some guitar & sing well but have never done either professionally. That made it much more difficult to build my business because I had no professional contacts to build on. When I initially had the idea it hadn't occurred to me (I was 18) that I would need professional contacts. So I advertised in all of the weekly newspapers surrounding my area which brought me zero results! I was working other jobs that allowed me time to tune. Eventually I got a job, well a position as tuner-tech for a music store. Position because I was a private contractor which after a few months became a commissioned sales position. I did that for about 18 months then began tuning more than selling. I got busy doing work for another store that helped me get a school contract. I was able to turn that school contract into a gold mine, they needed several pianos repaired over the summer. They gave my name to locals who called looking for a tuner & I was still tuning for that store. About then I began tuning for another store, the first store was in a small town about 40 miles from the large city where the 2nd store was/is. The first store closed about 6 months later, I had been tuning full time for 2-3 years at that point. I spent another 8 years doing shop work in my basement before I was able to build a garage an oversized garage that had room for my piano shop. I then had room to rebuild which includes completely dismantling grand & some upright pianos for new pinblock, re-stringing, replacement of hammers & action parts, in some cases total replacement of all action parts. I will be 70 the 26th of this month & I have no plans to retire, cut down on my tuning schedule perhaps but only to spend more time in the shop!
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