Thelonious Monkfish & Yoko Miwa In Search of a Piano
The Yamaha C6X is in the house, on stage and ready to be played by illustrious pianists of worldwide eminence! In fact, Herbie Hancock will be tickling the ivories on a weekly basis: he’s even bought a palatial condo in Cambridge to facilitate his residency here. Yeah–because we can afford his usual stipend of $100,000 per performance, no problem. KIDDING!
My friend Yoko Miwa–pianiste extraordinaire–and I saw some exquisite pianofortes at well-known shops in the greater Boston area, but the customer service couldn’t compare to Roger’s Piano in Natick. We purchased the piano there because Carol and Roger placed creating friendship with us above the sale. This is how I like to approach business as well: People first, money second! (Though I do love money. In fact, I love to bathe in bitcoin–it creates more bubbles than cold hard cash.)
Roger brought Yoko and me around to several pianos that he felt would work well for us. Yoko first played a Yamaha C2X and felt that it was lacking in volume. Next, she tried a six-foot Schimmel and seemed to enjoy the quality of its sound, but thought that its action was too light to the touch. Roger suggested a Yamaha C3X, since he said that the C3X on up through the C7X really benefitted from changes made after Yamaha bought Bosendorfer. Of course, these improvements are most evident in th
eir hand-made CFX series, but they’ve trickled down to their conservatory series and that’s what counts to me. Yoko enjoyed the C3X and declared it a possibility.
“But you’ve got to try this Steinway!” Roger declared. “It’s a 1960s Hamburg A rebuilt in Hamburg!”
Yoko played it and loved it. It really did resonate with a depth of sound not evident in the others we had tried! Alas, it wasn’t meant to be.
One factor that discouraged us from purchasing the Steinway was price. Sad to say.
Besides, companies that rely more on their giant marketing machinery than on the quality of their products irritate me! (Do you hear me, Apple??????? Ahem. I’m sorry. I digress.)
Steinway has relied heavily on its marketing for years. “Oh, you’ve got to have a Steinway. There is no piano like it!” I’ve heard many times. “Really?” Tell that to the makers of C. Bechstein, Blüthner, Bösendorfer, Fazioli, Grotrian, Sauter and Steingraeber & Söhne—all European manufacturers of outstanding pianos! And there are others who insist that Mason & Hamlin is the better of the two preeminent American piano makers.
Now the piano sits on our stage, waiting for someone to come play it. Will it be you?