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Paul McCartney
© AP/ Paul McCartney
McCartney organizes Motown piano restoration


Paul McCartney has organized restoration work on a piano used by several Motown legends, after he tried to play the instrument during a trip to the record label's museum.

The former Beatle wanted to show off his musical skills on the 1877 Steinway grand piano during a visit to the Motown Historical Museum in Michigan over the summer after finding out it had been played by the likes of Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder.

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Officials told McCartney the piano was no longer worked, so he offered to help get the historical piece restored to its former glory.

The museum's CEO, Audley Smith, Jr., tells The Detroit News, "He was disappointed when we told him it didn't play."

McCartney then got in touch with restorers at Steinway & Sons, who have promised to fix the instrument.

Also: Early Paul McCartney letter offers drummer tryout

The piano is scheduled to be picked up Monday (Oct. 31) and shipped to Steinway & Sons' New York headquarters, where it will take four to five months to have it professionally restored.

Until Steinway assesses the piano, it's unknown how much restoration will cost. Steinway won't change anything on the outside of the historic piano; it's the guts of the instrument that will be restored, Smith told The Detroit News.

A spokesperson for the company says, "Steinway & Sons is honored to restore the historic Steinway piano that was used by such legends as Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder, and to do so in the very same New York factory where it was originally built in 1877.

"We're especially proud, as an American company, to help the Motown Museum in preserving the legacy of the Motown Record Company, whose artists and albums played such a vital role in one of the great eras of American music."

Nov 1, 2011 5:46PM

Its almost like Detroit doesn't know what they have in their own backyard. This is like Graceland for the Northeast.



Nov 1, 2011 7:38AM
I've always known that Sir Paul was a class act...
Nov 1, 2011 7:27AM
There's always a collinsworth in the bunch, never fails. 
Nov 1, 2011 3:18AM
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