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One of the exciting things about being in the business of tuning and reparing pianos is that I have an opportunity to promote piano playing. Often times I have encountered families with children who are considering taking up playing the piano. Also, I run into quite a few recently retired people who have time on their hands and are interested in the piano.Having played the piano for nearly sixty years, I find it a natural extension of the tune-up, to inject some excitement into a conversation by playing the customer's piano for fifteen or twenty minutes following the tuning. Also, it makes sense to make sure the piano plays and sounds right. I remember as a young child being very excited about learning to play. That is why it is important to me that I encourage anyone who is even thinking about learning to play. What better way than to play several different styles, finishing off with some Scott Joplin ragtime.

One question that comes up related to learning the piano is, "Do you know a good piano teacher you could recommend for me or my child?" For this reason, I maintain a list of piano teachers, so that when the question comes up, I can share it with my customers, when they ask. To me, it is truly exciting to watch (and hear) the progress of a new student as he or she gains more skill over the years.

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E-mail: jmharter@msn.com