• Rachel Anne Baer


#childhoodmemories #pianola #greatmusicians #playingpiano

Inspired by my last post, I do remember being extremely good at playing this instrument. For several years we had this enormous version of a piano.

I am sure my dad acquired it at an antiques shop or maybe an estate sale, he still loves going to those and poking around even all these years later, you never know what treasures you will find. It must have taken so much work to get it home, pianos are incredibly heavy and this piece of furniture must have been a real challenge to move. As always I hung around carefully watching my dad as he worked to give it a good clean, tested it out and set it running. Before long he had found a piano stool for me to sit on and pretend to play. I loved standing on the stool and watching the little dots on the paper move around as the pianola did it's magic. Our version of the instrument had the paper rolls up above the keys, or at least that's how I remember it.

I am not sure my mum felt quite so fondly about this monstrosity coming to take up such a large space in our home. At the time we lived in a large Victorian home, this particular house was blessed with a very wide hallway/entryway which was the landing place of the pianola. I loved this contraption, I could sit for hours (which I did) my fingers moving across the "keys". In my mind I was a great musician, playing so beautifully I would get totally lost in the moment. The sound to me was magical, I guess young children generally have such good imaginations. Every now and then my dad would change out the rolls of music so I could play a different tune.

It was a sad day several years later when a large truck and some removal men came to take it away, I was sad to see it go, I had enjoyed my hours "playing" music so well. I guess my parents wanted more space in the house, I imagine it had been sold to a friend of a friend or advertised in the local newsagents shop on one of their many for sale postcards they had in the window. I would love to see one again now to see if it does still bring back such lovely memories.

If you're interested here's a link that describes a pianola

Here's another link where you can hear it playing, use your imagination to picture a young girl lost in the moment pretending she's a great musician.

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