There's another side to this conversation that I've been considering writing about for some time. But, I've been hesitant to say anything because I felt it might be construed as 'tooting my own horn'. However, facts are facts. The fact is, there has been a marked increase in the number of younger piano technicians who have made the decision to get involved with player pianos. They've told me, either directly or indirectly, that the information at Player-Care, and most especially the videos, helped them to understand that they have the skill sets and most of the tools required to work on player pianos.
In a sense, the videos are like the mentor showing the apprentice 'how it's done'. When I started shooting videos to demonstrate various things, I adopted the technique used by Craig Brougher. Basically speaking, he turned the camera 'on' and let it run, mistakes and all. And, to a large extent, he didn't do any editing. His thought, which he states in more than one of his videos, was that if he made a mistake, the viewer was most likely going to make a similar mistake. So, by leaving that mistake and his explanation of how to handle that mistake in the video, the viewer gets two benefits. One, how to deal with the mistake. Two, and more importantly, that even a highly skilled professional makes mistakes.
Here's my suggestion and offer. To those who are concerned about the future of our respective trade, start shooting videos while you're working. They don't have to be fancy. As you're working, talk to the camera as though you were talking to an apprentice who is standing right there watching you work. Explain why you're doing what you're doing, and give the 'apprentice' your insights. Then, upload those videos to YouTube. That's my suggestion. My offer is this; If the video has to do with player pianos, send me the link to the video along with your permission to use the video in a webpage at Player-Care. If you'd like to have specific text in the page, send that too. If not, I'll watch the video and determine how it can best be used as a teaching tool, and I'll link it to other similar information that's already at the site. If you'd like to include still pictures, that's fine too. (I have well over 100 gigabytes of unused space at my server. So, there's plenty of room for thousands of pictures.) Naturally, unless you would rather not be identified as the creator of the video, you will be given full credit for the video. Also, I can include any other information you'd like included in the webpage, i.e., that you're retired, that you're accepting new jobs, that you're willing to assist others, that you'd like a link to your website, etc., etc.
The goal is to get what you know into the hands of those who need the information. You don't know how many times I've heard from professionals who have said to me, "Gosh John, I wish the information you have at Player-Care had been available when I started working on players." Realistically, there aren't a whole lot of things we can leave behind when we die that have any real lasting value, but one of those things that do have lasting value is information. Help preserve the trade by preserving what you know.
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Since "Player-Care" is an internet business, I prefer that we correspond via E-Mail (click here to fill out the 'Request Form'). However, if I'm not in the middle of some other activity, you can reach me at 732-840-8787. But please understand that during the hours from 8AM-5PM EST (Mon-Sat), I'm generally quite busy. So, I probably won't answer the phone. If you get the answering machine, please leave a detailed message stating the reason for your call. Also, repeat your name and phone number clearly and distinctly. By necessity, I prioritize everything in my life. And, if you call and just leave your name and number, and ask me to call you back, it might be a day or two before I return your call. Why? Because I don't know why you want me to call and I might not be prepared to assist you in an effective and efficient manner. If you leave me an E-Mail address (which I prefer), spell it out phonetically. The more you do to help me, the more I can help you in return. Don't rush. You have four minutes to record your message.
407 19th Ave, Brick, NJ, 08724
Phone Number 732-840-8787