When my Dad was regularly working parades and the like, he and his band, Uncle Sam’s Love Thy Neighbor Ragtime Band, would ride around on a float rockin’ classic ragtime tunes.
Obviously, one needs a piano for this.
So Dad D. and his friends would bring along an upright piano. This piano traveled town to town and, as one would expect, became much worse for wear. Still, when my folks moved into their home to settle down, Dad D. insisted that the piano come along as well.
Please note: This piano was not a thing of beauty.
Mom D. smartly advised that it go in the basement. The problem here is that the piano was HUGE. So Dad D. and his friends removed the stairs from the bulkhead entrance (otherwise it wouldn’t fit) and started lowering this massive 600-700 pound piano down into the basement.
They dropped it.
The piano slammed into the concrete floor making a sound that was probably somewhere between music composed by George Crumb (worth a listen) and the death cry of a Beholder. Still, the piano survived the drop and then sat mostly idly in the DiDonato basement. It survived the pounding fists of toddlers, basement floods aplenty, and 25-30 years of natural aging.
Finally, Mom D. decided it had to go. Dad D. and Dwane started dismantling it. The pedals were thrown out, as were the keys. The front legs went and so did the front wooden paneling. Finally, all that was left was the brutally heavy soundboard: The back of the piano where all the strings are mounted.
Check it out:
Upon setting my eyes on this, I knew I needed it. Yeah, it’s heavy and yeah, it’s huge. But it’s so beautiful! The plan is to either figure out a way to wall mount it (challenging given its weight: 500lbs-ish) or to build a frame and legs, cover it in plexiglass, and use it as a dining room table.
Adding to the awesome, when you strum the open strings it emits a thunderous tone. I’ll get some sound clips posted at some point. This is going to be so epic!