The Gaitherization of Avery

I was piano shopping the other day. My first time. Who knew piano salesmen were so much like used-car dealers? At one point, my guy actually said to me (this was on a Sunday afternoon), “it’s so quiet in here you can hear the prices falling … whoa … help me now.” Ugh. I wanted to help him alright … Anyway, despite his smarmy unfunniness, he got his sale (though honestly the instrument sold itself more than its salesman).But it required a lot of test-driving of other models. About half-way through the ordeal, I happened to sit down and start pecking out some old hymn I’ve been tinkering with lately … “I Am Thine O Lord,” if memory serves. I slowed it down and repaced it so the gait was less gallop and more contemplative amble and brought out a few passing tones that congregational accompaniment has to play down. I was at a throwaway grand of some kind - one of those American brands with ampersands in the title that long ago shipped its production to Asia and promptly gutted themselves of all but tinniest and thinnest of sounds - and I heard my sales guy say to someone else in the store… “oh that guy [meaning me] sounds like something from one of them Gaither shows.”

Dear readers, has it come to this? Your earnest scribe, the (more or less) careful chronicler of the Gaither Effect, himself sucked into the vortex of Gaitherization? Alas, yes, I fear. Color me (and Avery) bemused.

Post script: lest you think this story a bit too pat for its own good, I should include what the salesman said a few beats later … “I hate Gaither.”

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