Why Your Retirement Community Needs a Piano

Why Your Retirement Community Needs a Piano

Retirement – or life in a retirement community – is a fact of life for many of us as we age.  The question is – how can we make retirement life better?  25 years ago this month, my grandfather passed away from Alzheimer’s. While modern medicine has made great strides in Alzheimer’s research and treatment, I often wonder what else could have extended his life or at least slowed the Alzheimer’s process.  Through my passion for music, I believe I have found one possible answer.

read more…

Premium Player Piano:  Disklavier vs. Spirio

Premium Player Piano: Disklavier vs. Spirio

When it comes to player piano systems – especially on the higher-end where there are really only two choices – Yamaha’s Disklavier Enspire Pro (also available on Bösendorfer Pianos) and Steinway’s Spirio system (only available on select Steinway pianos), piano shoppers often feel a bit confused. Both of these systems are factory installed by experienced technicians; both offer high-resolution MIDI sensors; and both claim to offer the most authentic representation of a living, breathing piano performance.  …but they are vastly different in price.  That leaves many asking us “What’s the difference and how do they compare?”  Well, if you’re considering a premium player piano, you’ll find all the answers you need here in our in-depth comparison.

read more…

The Truth About Piano Scams

The Truth About Piano Scams

piano scam email

This is an actual email one of our staff received from a piano scammer. Click the image to read it in full size.

Those of us who play the piano know the joy it brings. We love pianos, but we may not always have the budget for the instrument of our dreams.  We WANT that feeling of satisfaction and joy we get when we play a truly excellent instrument and we so want to believe in finding that “once-in-a-lifetime” deal. That is what makes falling victim to a piano scam so easy.  They prey on our emotions and envelop us in a web of plausible lies until they get what they’re really after:  our hard-earned money.

Piano scammers are tech savvy, experienced, heartless and clever.  They know how to hook us with emotion and how to weave a shockingly convincing (but completely untrue) story that can cost us hundreds – even thousands – of dollars if we fall victim.

…but how do we avoid falling for these fraudsters?  What are the warning signs?  How can we tell a “great deal” apart from something that is literally “too good to be true?”

Well, after decades in the piano business, I have seen all kinds of piano scams and – though avoiding them can be tricky – there are some simple things you can do to protect yourself.  Let’s take a look at the most common piano scams and the simple tools you can use to avoid them.

read more…

Top 5 Best Bluetooth APPS for Your Digital Piano

Top 5 Best Bluetooth APPS for Your Digital Piano

In 2009, Apple informed us that – no matter what we want to do – “There’s an app for that.”  …and WOW were they right!  Today almost every product has its own accompanying APPlication.  Kids can scan their Happy Meal toys and incorporate them into custom-made video games.  Folks can walk around hunting imaginary monsters with their smart phones.  We can even play along with our favorite bands whenever we want!  There’s an app for everything!  …but, especially since Bluetooth technology has simplified and stabilized the connections between devices, it’s easy to drown in available software.  …so here’s a list of the our favorite Bluetooth Apps for your Digital Piano:

read more…

Come See Us at AMEA!

Come See Us at AMEA!

As one of Arizona’s premier music education partners, Riverton Piano Company is honored to once again supply the Arizona Music Educators’ Association (AMEA) with all of the pianos they need for their two-day conference at the Mesa Convention Center.   From February 2-3, 2024, music educators from all over Arizona will converge for two days in Mesa to learn about new music education concepts and curriculum, share ideas, network with each other, and – of course – make great music together.

read more…

Why Steinway Piano Owners Trade Up to Bösendorfer Pianos

Why Steinway Piano Owners Trade Up to Bösendorfer Pianos

Due to recent changes in Steinway’s distribution model, it has become quite difficult for today’s consumer to compare new Steinway pianos and new Bösendorfer pianos in the same room.  That – combined with the fact that Americans are more generally familiar with the Steinway brand because Steinway & Sons is an American company – puts those who are unfamiliar with other premium piano brands (like Bosendorfer) at a big disadvantage.  Unfortunately, too many buyers purchase a Steinway before they’ve ever had a chance to experience a Bosendorfer piano in person.  …and – in a nutshell – that is why discerning piano owners so often trade their Steinway pianos up to Bosendorfer pianos.

As a piano expert with decades of experience selling premium pianos (including both Steinway and Bosendorfer) – and as a piano industry veteran who has personally toured both piano factories – I’ve compiled a detailed comparison to make piano shoppers aware of the key structural differences, differing design philosophies, and subtle performance variances that separate the two brands and make Bösendorfer the most sought after premium piano brand in the world.

 

read more…

Do Pianos Get Better with Age?

Do Pianos Get Better with Age?

do pianos age like fine wine?Well, they don’t age like wine… but – now that I think about it – that may be a good analogy.  To correctly age wine, you need to keep it between 50 and 60 degrees and at about 60 percent humidity. You need to store it on its side. You need to keep the bottles away from light and vibration. You also have to start with a fine wine. You’re not going to be able to transform a grocery store brand into Château Lafite Rothschild. If you do all of this, then you can mature it for decades and enjoy a really amazing wine.

On the other hand, if all you do is just put it in your pantry for decades – when you open it, you’re probably going to have a bottle that tastes like vinegar.

Just like wine, if you purchase a fine instrument – and then properly care for it – your piano can perform better for a limited amount of time. However, neglecting things like proper temperature and humidity and failing to provide regular maintenance can turn your piano into a “PSO” (piano shaped object) that is no longer enjoyable and – in some cases – no longer even playable.

Let’s look at how pianos age.

read more…

See World-Renowned Swing Pianist, Judy Carmichael LIVE!

See World-Renowned Swing Pianist, Judy Carmichael LIVE!

You’re invited to an unforgettable evening with internationally-acclaimed, Grammy-nominated swing pianist, vocalist, radio host, and author, JUDY CARMICHAEL,   Continuing her world-wide promotional book tour with a series of live recitals and concerts in the Phoenix area, Judy will conduct an intimate recital, book/cd signing party and “meet and greet” event at Riverton Piano Company Peoria’s recital hall Thursday, September 7 (7pm) as part of Riverton’s “Piano Education Partnership” community outreach program.

read more…

The Truth About Boston and Essex Pianos

The Truth About Boston and Essex Pianos

Boston Piano Silent Salesman

From the beginning, Boston pianos were advertised as completely “Designed by Steinway & Sons.” Many of the features Steinway emphasized turned out to be common on most similarly-priced pianos.

As one of the most – if not the most – expensive pianos made in America today (with uprights starting over $50,000 and baby grands starting at $87,000), Steinway & Sons pianos are simply not accessible to a majority of piano buyers.  Making matters worse for Steinway is increased competition from high quality – yet more affordable – piano brands like Yamaha and Baldwin.  This is why a company surrounded by romance and global esteem has seen such a catastrophic drop in piano sales from around 6000 pianos per year in the 1920s to an estimated 1000 or fewer pianos per year today.  Faced with these sobering numbers, Steinway & Sons was forced to diversify their offerings and increase their appeal among piano shoppers.  Thus, in 1991, Steinway introduced its first line of “mid-priced” pianos.  Boston was born.

read more…