As you can see from the paragraphs below, I've worked in some very swanky venues in the past but as you will also have seen from the picture on this page; also worked in some very real and surreal situations.
I've even worked in a windmill and a converted pig-shed, both in Norfolk; not too many of these to be found in London... These unusual venues are every bit as interesting and rewarding as those world-famous 'gigs' in The Capital and make the work especially delightful and intriguing.
John Bayles started out in his profession in London in 1989. In central London he worked in private homes, serviced three piano showrooms and worked in many venues, including Sadler's Wells, The English National Opera and The National Theatre, amongst various other world-famous venues.
In 1991 John Bayles took the plunge to become self-employed and now runs his own business in his home county of Norfolk in the United Kingdom.
Here's a wonderful example of what you can find when tuning. An early 1900's Bluthner grand with a retro-fitted, 3.5” floppy-disc, player mechanism.
The irony is that I hadn't even noticed it was there when I started to tune the piano. Most of the time, you're just so pre-occupied with tuning the instrument.
The customer builds organs around the world, so we had common ground – the player mechanism only came up in conversation afterwards. Of course! - we couldn't resist the temptation to have a little play, boys and toys...
The customer can be seen here, walking in and out of shot, proudly demonstrating the various functions of his player-grand. The impromptu and somewhat shaky camera work, came courtesy of an iPhone.