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with conrad (from chris and conrad) By Caroline Lusk
Conrad from Chris and Conrad is what you might call a
“hands-on” kind of guy. And when it came to outfitting
their stage show with the coolest, best-sounding and
(relatively) portable piano, he took matters into his own
It all began with Craigslist, an old upright and some
time at home. Within a couple months, he had stripped
the upright of all the strings, bolts and soundboard.
Oh yeah—he ripped out all the ivories, too!
“Before I pulled the soundboard out, I just ripped all the
keys out,” Conrad says with a laugh. “That was fun. It was
like the demolition process!”
Soon, he had a shell of a piano ripe for the sanding and
painting. A week and a half later, the upright was nearly
unrecognizable in its new shiny white coat. Then, the real
fun began—the techie stuff.
With very finite dimensions to play with, Conrad had to do
quite a bit of investigation to find a keyboard that would give
him the sounds he needed and fit within the white shell. “You
want to make sure you have the right look without having to
make too many modifications,” he explains.
He found what he wanted—a Yamaha CP300. Sadly, it
was a bit too heavy.
Choice No. 2: A Nord Stage 88 just happened to be the
perfect balance of weight, length and sound. It’s red, too,
so it just happened to look uber-cool.
Add to that a custom set of LEDs under any surface
that would sit still and Conrad has arguably the coolest
keybard in the industry.
Lucky for the rest of us, he’s looking to start making
Interested? Hit him up at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the meantime, check out the sounds of his mad piano
skills at a summer festival near you. Log onto
www.chrisandconrad.com for a tour schedule and more!
Breaking it down
Instrument: Custom Upright Piano Shell fitted with Electronic Keyboard
Brand: Keyboard-Nord Stage 88 Calzone Custom Case with ramp 16 feet
of RGB flex LED lighting
Pros: : Light weight and completely self-contained. Roll it out of its
custom Calzone case and plug it in. The Nord Stage 88 is removed easily
for portability and fly dates. You can stand on top and moonwalk.
Cons: Can’t fly with it. Very heavy when it’s in the case.