top of page

Nomadic Ivories -
Nathanael Schaeffer

Composer, Performer, Piano Tuner

When a sleepy, disorganized piano's harmonics start ringing in harmony, I am at peace.

For several years I travelled around North America and Europe hunting public pianos.  I looked at playing in public as a practice room where I could also share my music. Often the pianos were in rough shape so I started tinkering. Regularly the tuners would come around and get the pianos sounding their best. I would watch, listen, ask questions. Eventually one gave me a set of his old tools and I started touching up a note here and there. Soon I was tuning for friends and family. I realized this could be a way to make money within music without drawing on the same well I needed to preserve for writing/performing. When I was ready, I started making classified listings and began tuning for strangers. Early 2019 I did an online tuning course to become “certified”. By the end of 2019 I was burnt out from my musical adventures. In January 2020 I was in New Zealand and suffered a nasty concussion. I returned home to the world shutting down for the covid days. It seems life was trying to tell me to slow down, but until I listened it would bang me over the head. I pivoted, and since January 2021 I have been traveling around Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast in my van building a piano tuning business. I haven’t counted, but I am currently somewhere around 1000 pianos tuned. My customer list has grown deep enough, that I know I can take chunks of time to go into artist mode, and on return my calendar will be full of tunings (Generally spring and fall are tuning season). Artist mode has been gradually coming back as my head recovers, and I am blessed to be finding a balance as an artist with a way of funding myself, while deepening my connection to pianos.

Tuning Inquiry

Reviews - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (2)

Guest
Jun 07

Nomadic Ivories (Nathaneal, or Mr. Ivories, as I prefer to call him) came to do another tune-up job on my upright piano - the instrument sounds so incredibly rich when Mr. Ivories completes his work! I am not a piano player, although I consider myself a musician, and I usually play music in the bass clef, so I have a natural affinity for bass notes. Nathaneal tunes the whole piano, of course, but I just love the deep, rich, basal tones that now lift the hairs on my arms when my piano-playing buddy lights them up! It's been great to get know you, Nathaneal, and despite your nomadic moniker, I am looking forward to a long term relationship where provide my piano with the care it needs, regularly!

Like

Guest
Jun 07

Nate does a fantastic job with our old piano and keeping her tuned up. He stays in regular touch so I don't have to remember to get in touch with him, which I appreciate. He is also a very talented musician and so I feel lucky to get to hear me play in our living room for a wee little concert while tuning.

Adria

Like
bottom of page