We thought our Artisan Piano Services customers might be interested in learning a little more about the instrument that they hold so dear! We built this business based on our passion for the piano and it’s unparalleled sound. With our staff of highly trained technicians, we carry on the time-honored tradition of music, art and craftsmanship.
The piano has been around for quite some time. It all began in Padua, Italy in 1709, in the shop of a harpsichord maker named Bartolomeo di Francesco Cristofori (1655-1731). Many other stringed and keyboard instruments preceded the piano and led to the development of the instrument, as we know it today.
Mankind’s knowledge that a taut, vibrating string can produce sound goes back to prehistoric times. In the ancient world, strings were attached and stretched over bows, gourds, and boxes to amplify the sound; they were fastened by ties, pegs and pins; and they were plucked, bowed or struck to produce sounds.
Eventually, a family of stringed instruments with a keyboard evolved in Europe in the 14th century. The earliest of these was a dulcimer, a closed, shallow box over which stretched wires were struck with two wooden hammers. The dulcimer led to the development of the clavichord, which also appeared in the 14th century. These were followed by the spinet, virginal, clavecin, gravicembalo, and finally, the harpsichord in the 15th century.
The harpsichord, however, was limited to one, unvarying volume. Its softness and loudness could not be varied while playing. Therefore, performing artists could not convey the same degree of musical expression as that of most other instruments. The artistic desire for more controlled expression led directly to the invention of the piano, on which the artist could alter the loudness and tone with the force of one’s fingers.
The harpsichord was a particularly important development leading to the invention of the piano. Its ability to project sound more loudly than its predecessors, and refinements in the action (or touch) inspired many more musicians to compose for the keyboard and thus, to perform keyboard works. First exhibited in Florence in 1709, Cristofori’s new instrument was named gravicembalo col piano e forte (roughly “soft and loud keyboard instrument”). Eventually, it was shortened to fortepiano or pianoforte, and finally just piano. His earliest surviving instrument dates from 1720 and is on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Our customers are very passionate about their pianos as is our team here at Artisan Piano Services! Angela, our office manager, has been playing the piano for over 25 years and is our resident piano guru. James, a field technician in our Bellevue location has been a pianist for most of his life, and enjoys playing classical and jazz, along with composing music of his own. Joshua, the lead technician in Bellevue has always loved the piano because it blends music and mechanics in such a unique way. He has been trained by some of the Pacific Northwest’s industry leading technicians such as David (Founder/Owner.) David and Artisan Piano Services’ philosophy has always been the same: to bring old world craftsmanship and care to the modern world of piano service.
Today, Artisan Piano Services has become one of the top piano servicing companies in the Pacific Northwest, with locations in Oregon and Washington and a strong desire to bring quality and craftsmanship to the piano industry, just like the piano builders of the past.
“Time remembers those master artisans whose commitment to tradition and quality gave us a legacy of beauty, art and music. Like piano builders of old, we take great pride in continuing this time-honored tradition of simplicity, elegance and integrity. Our technicians are not only skilled piano tuners, but are also full-service rebuilders and consultants, doing whatever it takes to bring your piano back to its fullest life and potential.”
David Hayes, Founder Artisan Piano Services
Servicing Oregon and Washington
Sources include: History of the Piano. Ontario Pianos Inc.
Josh Mayfield, our lead technician in our Bellevue, Washington location, had a unique opportunity this week. While doing a cruise ship tuning on board the Zaandam, one of Holland America’s luxury cruise ships, a King 5 Seattle news crew came aboard to do a news story on what the cruise industry does for the local economy and small business like ours at Artisan Piano Services.
Josh explained, “As chance would have it they caught me tuning one of several pianos on board the ship and asked if they could get a few shots of me tuning and ask some questions. I was bit caught off guard but had a great time with them.”
[See Josh starting at about 2:15 minutes]
Josh has been providing tuning and piano repair services on cruise ships almost every week for a number of years in Seattle. With all of the constant movement, changing atmospheric conditions and the amount of use the pianos get, Josh needs to regularly be using his years of expertise to keep them playing and sounding their best.
Whether it’s at home, in a church, a school or on a massive cruise ship, Artisan Piano Service has you covered in both the great Seattle, Washington and Portland, Oregon areas. Let us know if you need your piano tuned or other services! We even do complete piano restoration.
Angie’s List Press Release
Portland, Oregon and Bellevue, Washington, January 1, 2018 – Artisan Piano Services is proud to announce that it has earned the home service industry’s coveted Angie’s List Super Service Award (SSA). This award honors service professionals who have maintained exceptional service ratings and reviews on Angie’s List in 2017.
“The service providers that receive our Angie’s List Super Service Award demonstrate the level of excellence that members have come to expect,” said Angie’s List Founder Angie Hicks. “These pros are top-notch and absolutely deserve recognition for the trustworthy and exemplary customer service they exhibited in the past year and overall.”
The Artisan team of highly trained technicians and customer relations staff have been providing outstanding piano tuning, repair, cleaning & appraisals, and even complete piano refinishing and restoration throughout the greater Portland and Seattle areas.
Award reflects company’s consistently high level of customer service
Angie’s List Super Service Award 2017 winners have met strict eligibility requirements, which include maintaining an “A” rating in overall grade, recent grade and review period grade. The SSA winners must be in good standing with Angie’s List, pass a background check, record a current trade license attestation and abide by Angie’s List operational guidelines.
“We are just thrilled to be recognized as a Super Service Award winner every year we have been listed with Angie’s list,” said David Hayes, the owner of Artisan Piano Services. “Our teams in both Portland and Bellevue have done a marvelous job of focusing on the expectations of our customers and tailoring our technical expertise to the needs they have. We are grateful for all the support and excellent feedback we receive from our customers.”
Artisan Piano Services has been listed on Angie’s List since 2011 in Portland, Oregon and 2014 in Bellevue, Washington. This is the 7th consecutive that year Artisan Piano Services has received this honor.
Service company ratings are updated continually on Angie’s List as new, verified consumer reviews are submitted. Companies are graded on an A through F scale in multiple fields ranging from price to professionalism to punctuality.
For over two decades Angie’s List has been a trusted name for connecting consumers to top-rated service professionals. Angie’s List provides unique tools and support designed to improve the local service experience for both consumers and service professionals.
For over two decades, Angie’s List has provided trusted reviews and information to help millions of consumers make smart hiring decisions. Angie’s List offers more than 10 million verified reviews in over 700 service categories, providing its members a credible resource for researching and comparing local service providers. Angie’s List is based in Indianapolis, Indiana and is an operating business of ANGI Homeservices (NASDAQ:ANGI).
According to the Piano Technicians Guild, piano tuning varies according to manufacturers:
“While pianos generally fall into vertical and grand model categories, each manufacturer selects its own materials and utilizes its own unique scale and furniture designs. Every piano requires a different level of maintenance, depending upon the quality of materials used and the design and level of craftsmanship. Manufacturers can provide general advice on tuning frequency but your technician can give specific recommendations based upon your usage and locale.”
Here’s what some of the major piano manufacturers recommend:
Baldwin Piano Company (also Chickering, Wurlitzer)
Professional service is the key. In the first year, the National Piano Manufacturers Association recommends that you have your piano tuned four times. This is a period of environmental adjustment for a new instrument, and proper attention is important.
After the first year, the piano should be tuned at least twice each year, depending upon the frequency of use and atmospheric conditions. Contact Artisan Piano Services to schedule an appointment with our professional technicians to perform this service.
We just finished restoring a 100+ year old Hamburg Steinway & Sons model “O” piano. Fred Riley, of Classic Pianos, recorded this video of Ruby Hall playing Beethoven’s Sonata op.2 no.3 in our shop.
Artisan restored this piano for our partners,Classic Pianos, to showcase in their “Classic Collection.” The pianos that we restore for this collection are second to none in terms of quality of workmanship, materials and tone.
With a full piano restoration, we not only refinish the cabinet
…but also completely restore the belly, including new strings
…the keys and action are reconditioned
…and we even polish up and regulate the pedals!
Although we do all of our piano restoration work out of our Portland, Oregon location, we have had several come to us from the Seattle, Washington area, and from other parts of the United States and Britain.
We do shop tours daily, and would be delighted to show you around!
A little over a year ago Artisan Piano Services unveiled its new “Restoration Center.”
We are now proud to show the world “The Piano Shop”
In the video you can see our hard working and talented technicians completely rebuilding pianos in our remodeled and refreshed Piano Shop. We provide full piano restoration services, as well as less involved piano reconditioning services, including action rebuilding, refinishing, cleaning and re-stringing.
Artisan Piano Services is pleased to provide support this year for Pianos In The Park. Our very own Josh Mayfield has gone to several of the locations to tune and repair some of the various pianos. Click here to see an video about the development of this exciting arts and culture project!
We are pleased to announce the release of our new promotional video.
Many thanks to Miwaza Jemimah of Miwaza Productions for her great work on it!
Because Artisan Piano Services is always looking for ways to better serve our customers – We are pleased to announce that our customers can now schedule appointments online for piano tuning, repair, cleaning, appraisals or to estimate a full piano restoration!
Just press the button at the top right of every page of our website to be taken to an easy to use form. Our friendly staff will follow up with you right away!
To be sure – You can still just call or email us anytime!