One of my Monday students is a retired teacher who, like many of my adult students, decidedly underreported her piano abilities when she called me for lessons. She most certainly could have made a career of it, and in her retirement seems to be regretting not having done so. So part of my lessons involve traditional teaching, and the other part is usually me finding her chances to play either in public or with others. She's well up in her 70's and such opportunities aren't that easy to come by.
This past Monday she met me at the gate and walked me in as usual. When we got to her elevator, a kind of schlubby older couple was there also waiting for the elevator. They greeted her and talked about old-retired-people stuff of fixing the air conditioning and the like. When the elevator came, they pressed her same floor, and she commented on it. "I guess we should introduce ourselves then," my student said. The couple was Steve and Lani. They asked her, "Are you the piano player?" She was happy about that and said she was. Lani said, "I used to sing a bit and Steve played guitar." That's everyone's story in SoCal, land of the aging hippies, so I said, "Well, you guys should all get together some time." The couple seemed OK with that idea and followed my student into her condo to exchange contact information.
We all get to talking. The couple moved to SoCal from NY, as I did, so we start to chat a bit. It turns out they actually played music professionally in New York. "What kind of stuff did you do?" I ask.
"Well," Steve says, "Lani sang with Stevie Wonder. In fact that's her at the beginning of 'You Are the Sunshine of My Life.'"
"Lani" was Lani Groves. I found it almost confusing to be talking with someone who was so literally part of the soundtrack of my life. "Steve" was Steve Love of Stories. The schlubby "we used to play music too" couple who was trying to get their touchy air conditioning working right, was straight up music royalty.
Crazy little moment. Just thought I'd share.