First of all, I am VERY tall, 6 foot 7 1/2 inches. So, don't be scared when a giant man comes to your door. And you don't have to apologize for being curious about it. I get questions every day of my life! (Oh, and yes, Carl Grapentine, of classical radio and Michigan Marching Band fame, is my brother.)
I began piano lessons at age five, but after five years I was also playing the oboe and Little League Baseball, which left no time for the piano. So I quit my piano lessons...the biggest mistake of my life! I thought I was going to be a doctor, but I ended up going to the University of Michigan School of Music, getting Bachelor and Master of Music degrees, and became a professional singer and voice instructor. Better piano skills would have helped!
So now I spend my life tuning and fixing pianos for others who can play. I have been tuning pianos for over 30 years now, having studied with Frank McKowen of Lansing, a Registered Piano Technician in the Piano Technicians Guild. I do enjoy taking a piano that has "problems" and having it sound and play better when I leave. My goal is always happy customers giving each one the best workmanship and the best value possible for the care of their instruments.
In addition to my work as a professional musician, I am a recently retired ordained minister, having served as the pastor at Northside Community Church in Ann Arbor for eleven years. I have served numerous churches over the past 40 years as pastor, associate pastor, director of Christian education, choir director, youth leader, and even janitor, so I understand the workings and needs of the religious community. I have cared for the pianos at numerous churches, large and small, of many different denominations. (Baptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Roman Catholic, Assemblies of God, Mormon, etc.) It is especially gratifying to be able to offer my services to churches at a reasonable price since I know how stretched church budgets always are!
I have also taught voice & music classes, conducted choirs, and led a drama program on the college level and have been married to a public school teacher for 40 years, so I am well aware of the difficulties of keeping a school piano in good condition. From elementary schools to high schools to colleges, pianos get moved around, left unattended, battered, banged on, and sometimes have the strangest things dropped inside them! I can work with you to reduce the stress and strain on your instrument with proper moving equipment, locks, covers, humidity control systems...whatever your piano needs to stay in the best condition possible. And, of course, I can tune your school's pianos.