Your memories of music and lessons

Remember when I shared Jo’s family sheet music collection and her stories about how the family took music lessons?

I received several other great comments on that topic by mail and email. It almost makes me want to dig out the saxophone again or dust off the piano keys!


Treva McMaster of Manchester wrote, “The discussions on music in the York area reminded me of my childhood in the 1960s, taking accordian lessons along with my sister, Wendy, at the Plymire Studios on West King St. in York. There was also a dance studio there. We were in the accordian band, which played at numerous small parks in the York City area and Williams Grove Park. There was a lot of memories of being in the accordian band. I also remember a LeRose Accordian Band? Anyone else remember?”

She continues, “My mother would drop us off for lessons and go to Franklin Discount on West King St. shopping. It was a good time back in the 1960s to be a kid, what happened to the accordians? They taught us a lot of discipline studying and practicing those things.”

I also heard from Dianne Bowders of York Township. Many of you are familiar with longtime commenter Dianne. She writes, “Miss Dorothy Emig, a Peabody graduate, lived on Madison Avenue and taught me piano for many years, until I later majored in music at college. Miss Emig had two baby grands in her back parlor. I continue to play music in several venues.” (Wow! I had no idea about that when I started thinking about this topic!)

Dianne also notes, “I’ve got several boxes of old sheet music (1910-1920), too. If you’re looking for a particular piece, Johns Hopkins is one of many schools that has a searchable sheet music collection.” She shared a link to that at I checked it out just briefly but could have gotten lost for hours!

Steve Raffensberger wrote in with a question about music. He said, “I am looking for the name of a music store in the 800 block of East Market St. back in the 60’s. It was on the same side as the York bank. It sold musical instruments. Any help would be appreciated.”

Well, his question was pretty quickly answered by Connie Morningstar, who wrote, “It was called Keyboard Studios at 830 E. Market St. I took many lessons there.”

Ben Lightner commented as well. He said, “I too took music lessons. I have been playing trumpet since I was 9. I am honored to say my teacher was Harry Kahler for 8 years. He was the music director for York City Schools. With his guidance I was able to play at many local churches, made the district band, high school all star band and others. My favorite memory was when I was in high school and was lucky enough to make the William Penn Serenaders. I continue playing to this day. I march every year with the York High Alumni band in the York Halloween Parade.”

Ben’s memories brought up good thoughts for me. First, I love alumni band performances! Remember this one I was in? And I also am honored to have been the student of a great band director, Dover High’s George Bradshaw.

Speaking of band directors, I hear another local legend, Tom Eyster at West York, is retiring this year after 34 years of service. If you were a West York alum, leave me a comment; I have some folks trying to get in touch!

Thank you all for the fun memories. I’ll keep an ear out for more. I’ll stay in tune with the subject. I’ll drum up some more stories. I’ll … quit with the puns, at least for now!

About Joan

My name is Joan and I'm a lifelong Yorker. Throughout high school and college, I swore I was getting out of here as soon as possible. Now, a few years later, I can't think of anywhere I'd rather be. I love my town, and I hear every day from readers who love their towns, too. So please, connect with me and let's share what makes life in York County great. I'm here to help you enjoy this place as much as I do!
This entry was posted in Local memories. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Your memories of music and lessons

  1. Blake Stough says:

    When I was growing up, all of my siblings took piano lessons from Miss Nace. We lived in Spring Grove, so she may have been local to that area. I was the baby of the family, and my lessons only lasted 1 month or so. The piano wasn’t my thing, and I soon started taking drum lessons from Dave Hershey in West York.
    My older brother and 2 sisters also took piano lessons from Miss Nace. Each stopped taking lessons over time, but my brother ended up playing percussion for the York Symphony, Harrisburg Symphony, and the Spring Garden Band.

  2. James Goodling says:

    I took piano lessons in the late 40’s and 50’s from a Miss Miller who came to our house for the lessons. In about 1953 I started lessons above Julius Music House, which then was on West Market St., (not sure of the address.) I took lessons from a Dick Gruver, who also played in a local band.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *