Pianos: The Colour Purple

Pianos, I'm talking pianos. But permit me to share memories of my spring garden.

The pinky-red flowers made a showing for the first time, planted later to tussle it out in a race with the others as I strove to fill gaps. I don't care who 'wins' in the Brown Thumb Gardener's Stakes, as long as someone does.

There is just the merest hint of purple blooms visible above, but in reality purple is the dominant force. My first plantings were entirely purple. I added others lest I seem one-dimensional or obsessed.

No matter how or when I tried to photograph, I never felt able to capture the vibrant essence of the blooms. 

Early one summer morning I painted a purple feature wall. I activate about one per cent of my constant stream of seemingly wonderful daydreamy ideas. Perhaps it's just as well, a lot of them are probably rubbish. I figured that the purple I chose for the wall should be quite muted - a really vibrant purple en masse might be too much. Sensible and cautious, that's me. It still seems impossible to capture its colour, it is more vibrant to the eye.

I chose one of the few wrought iron thingies that I didn't find completely ugly and mounted it. In the long run I don't know why I was so fussy because the Chinese Jasmine grew vigorously and camouflaged it completely.

Little sculptural flowers delight, and the buds are even more architectural.

See what I mean? You can't see the wrought iron thingie at all. I have created a large foliage wall (inspired by a neighbour's similar effort) which put on its best display ever last spring. It is mostly purple, but the splashes of red and white add ever-changing interest.

More of mine? No. This house and garden (that of a piano tuning client) took my purple everything and raised it. Muted schmuted! Damn the decibels, we're cranking this thing up to eleven. I was in awe.

This purple house was the purplest house I'd ever seen, an utter delight. If only I had been that bold, I thought. On this glorious day the colours just exploded my eyeballs and could not be captured in my snapshots. It's a wonder my whole house isn't purple, but I am cautious and given to anonymity on the streetscape... 

A preponderance of purple, even the chimney. OK, it's time to stop papping the house and go to work. Well, in the true click-bait internet-speak of now, you're not going to believe what happened next. Don't tell me you've already skimmed ahead...

...well burger me...

A purple piano! I couldn't believe my eyes. But what about your ears? (I hear you cry). Could you believe your ears? Astonishing for me, was the detail of purple sharps (the 'black notes' - they'll always, well mostly, be purple flats to me - I'm a brass player). 

That's one of my idle daydreams (well outside the 1% activation zone) that if I had more money and time than sense, I'd procure or create a Prince-style purple piano - yes, even the sharps.

OK, I'll level with you. That was not the piano in the purple house. This is the piano in the purple house - a standard-issue robust and reliable Yamaha U1, but with the unusual feature of agraffes throughout.

The strings pass through brass agraffes between the speaking (sounding) and non-speaking sections.

This Crown piano from Chicago has purple felts and cloths inside. It sure makes a change from the usual eternally Christmassy seas of red and green...

...and a charming warranty decal underneath the lid.

P is for purple - and problems.

Possible purple, under the dust of decades.

I note and document an unusual method of attaching the hammers. The Billings Flange system has a continuous brass thingie with little sticky-uppy bits (see that little bit?) ready to somehow receive the hammer butts. Different, unusual. Not what you want to see, not your normal individual hammer flanges. More research is required before I would attempt any dismantling or repairs, and even then...

A purple hammer rest rail in a Beale Vader piano, with plenty of typical red and green still to be seen.

Is that what I think it is?

Yes. Oh my, should I call the RSPCP? A serious sidewalk sighting - or footpath finding. Actually, that looks almost like a driveway.

Free. Artists of the non-musical kind should probably be the ones to investigate this piano.

A free car. You can't go wrong at that price! Yes, you can. 

What's black, white and red (read) all over? It used to be a punny joke about newspapers. What papers? News whats? But seriously, a red stool is a medical emergency.

Speaking of pianos, I mean cars, I mean pianos - check out these intriguing retreads. Will this piano pass rego?

Reshaping hammers to restore their focussed striking points and the integrity of their shape is legitimate. The amount of times reshaping can occur is strictly limited by how small the hammers can realistically become and still do their job. This retread treatment in the bass range is quite the quirky work-around. 

An odd tuning pin layout on a bass bridge. Normally there's a pattern to the pins that is either sort of four rows, or two (as you see in the Yamaha U1 with agraffes). This pin layout with groups of three really messed with my head. I had something else to blame other than being slightly hung over when I encountered it.

Myriad items arrive as I tune an event hire piano. The space gradually fills with props and hubbub. Is that purple I spy under that wrapping?

I wonder who will sit on the purple couch, but I'm not curious enough to consider watching the show to find out.

A quadruped. 

This piano totes tidy court shoes for the office, but sneakers for the power walks from station to office. Who are you kidding Cazzbo? You have no idea what type of shoes office pianos wear - nor what it is like for a piano to catch a train to the office every morning.

Similar posts:

Cazzbo in Clunkerland

Goanna Roundup (pianos about town)

Pianistic peregrinations (or why pianos don't like sun, swimming, nor sheds)

How does my garden grow?

YouTube: The Brown Thumb Gardener strolls around the garden