Thursday, December 18, 2014

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NY1 examines the effects of Hurricane Sandy on the anniversary of the storm.

All Boroughs

Sandy One Year Later: Many Musicians Lost Instruments In The Storm

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TWC News: Sandy One Year Later: Many Musicians Lost Instruments In The Storm
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Musicians who lost their instruments during Hurricane Sandy are still singing the blues, and in most cases, insurance left them high and dry. NY1's Cheryl Wills filed the following report.

What do the Black Crowes and Lenny Kravitz have in common? They reportedly lost some of their most prized guitars during Hurricane Sandy, and they were not alone.

If you're a musician, you probably know Steve Pisani. He's worked in the music industry for more than 30 years and recently opened his own showroom in midtown called The GTR Store.

During the storm, Pisani's first thought was to save his priceless gear.

"Up and down the stairs I went. I got all the guitars up when the storm hit," he said. "The water came up, up, up, up, up into the basement, flooded the basement up to my waist. Unfortunately, I didn't get my amplifiers and drums out of there."

When it was all over, Pisani's phone didn't stop ringing with tearful musicians who unable to move their instruments to higher ground. Now, he's using his fancy new shop to make a difference.

"Now, what we're trying to do is help people replace them with similar instruments, or we look for replacements of the same year," he said.

It's music to the ears of musicians like Damien Paris. During the storm, he had a gig on The Late Show with David Letterman. When he returned to his studio in Brooklyn, his instruments were floating down the street.

"The Gowanus Canal took out my practice space, and it is the nastiest body of water on Earth," Paris said. "So cleaning it wasn't an issue. We just had to leave it."

Tom Beaujour is the author of "Guitar Aficionado: The Collections."

"For someone to lose an instrument that they've worked with that long, it's really tough on them," he said.

To add insult to injury, unless musicians had a rider on their insurance, many were not reimbursed for their losses.

Many musicians are still looking for that perfect replacement.

"Instruments, they're like family heirlooms. They're like best friends. People own guitars for 20, 30 years. They pass it along to the rest of their family," Pisani said. "And when they get damaged, it's real sad." ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP