I bought this piano in September of 2000, and to this day it's still the best investment I've made. Haven't had one single problem with it. Eventually I'd like to own a baby grand piano, but this is more than adequate for now.
I took piano lessons for about a year as a kid but never maintained them because I had other priorities at the time. This is my biggest regret in life. I pretty much stopped playing until the Summer after my freshmen year in college (1997) when I saw a cheap Casio keyboard at Walmart, and decided to pick it just to pass the time.
One day I heard the first movement of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata and was instantly drawn to it. Immediately I visited a local music store and bought the sheet music. The next year in college I spent a considerable time in the public piano labs playing that song and messing around on the uprights. One of the instructors who was walking by at the time heard me and asked if I'd be interested in taking lessons. So the next semester I enlisted in a general piano class.
After the semester ended my instructor asked if I'd be interested in taking private lessons, and before I knew it I was back in the swing of regular playing. From there I went on to perform in over 20 recitals, including 2 duets with a flute player and an honors recital. I'm actually a really crappy performer and I hated that aspect to it. My hands would shake at the keyboard because I was so nervous and not used to all the attention. I was known as the Beethoven kid because that's mainly what I played...that and just free-form jamming. I actually spent a ton of time during college wandering down to the piano labs and jamming for hours at end. It was one of my favorite things to do when I was really wasted and everybody used to make fun of me because of it, haha. One day my instructor actually asked if I'd be interested in doing improvisational acts at a local bar for money, but I immediately shrugged it off because I despised performing in front of people.
Beethoven is still one of my biggest musical inspirations, and there's no describing the feeling you get when playing his music. He has a certain style to him which I just find magical. I still own the key given to me by my instructor which unlocks the grand piano practice rooms in Oswego, and every now and then when I'm visiting that town I'll stop by and jam for a bit on them. Doing so always brings me back to those 4 wondrous years I spent in college...a time which revitalized a passion in me I'll be carrying throughout my life.