[JPL] good career move

Jim Wilke jwilke123 at comcast.net
Tue Jul 11 23:50:28 EDT 2006

Well, it's not exactly a first.  I was at a performance a few years ago 
when a well-known pianist was playing a lesser-known venue (both shall 
remain nameless to protect the hardly innocent!).   About midway 
through a tune, the pianist abruptly stood up from the 5' baby grand 
and announced,  "I'm sorry, I'm a pianist and this is not a piano.  See 
(the owner) and he'll give you your money back." and left the stage.   
- Man, talk about a real show-stopper!

More surprisingly, the pianist has since played for the same management 
again, but now on a decent piano. (Probably would have settled for 
6'10" Steinway B)

One has to have a certain amount of sympathy/empathy for touring 
pianists who with rare exception play a different instrument nearly 
every night and never know what they'll be dealing with until they get 
to the gig. There are a few in the very top echelon who have been able 
to tour with their own piano, or in the case of Steinway artists, have 
specially prepared artists' pianos provided in major cities.

It's not always just the piano, though.  During a long series of live 
radio shows from a local club we had Ahmad  Jamal, Gene Harris, Kenny 
Barron, Hamp Hawes, Horace Silver, Wynton Kelly, Oscar Peterson and a 
dozen other pianists play the same piano with good results. But when 
Bill Evans sat down and played the first couple of chords and a run, my 
head snapped around so fast I nearly knocked my headphones off.  It 
sounded so rich I thought they'd put in a new piano since last week.   
Nope.... just a new piano player.

Jim Wilke
Jazz After Hours, PRI

On Tuesday, July 11, 2006, at 08:14  PM, Tom Reney wrote:

> Pianist cancels Regattabar gigs
> July 8, 2006
> Grammy-winning pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba canceled his two-night stint 
> at the Regattabar only hours before the first of two sets last night 
> because he objected to the room's piano, a 6-foot, 10-inch Steinway 
> Model B.
> ``He's just not happy with this piano," said Greg Herbst, the 
> Regattabar general manager, who found out Rubalcaba's four gigs 
> weren't happening just 25 minutes before show time.
> Herbst said there had been a request to bring in another piano, but 
> ``[Rubalcaba's] management was supposed to handle that."
> Last night, 130 ticket holders for the 7:30 p.m. show were turned 
> away, their money refunded. Herbst said ticket holders for tonight's 
> two shows will have their money refunded . For more information, call 
> 617-395-7757.

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