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We have a new neighbor in our rental building. She is a violinist -NOT professional, and I believe a student. She practices from (at least) 6pm - 8pm+ every night and we can hear every (very loud) note in our apartment.
We have introduced ourselves and explained that while we understand she needs to practice, her practice is interfering with our ability to watch TV at a reasonable volume, or talk on the phone, or read a book. Since she is a student, we suggested she practice during “work” hours, as our apartment building is otherwise empty during the day. She seems not to be interested in this suggestion. We have also learned that she is now giving lessons to little kids out of her apartment. And if we thought her practice was annoying, the screeching from the lessons is 10X worse.
We want to be friendly neighbors, but this kid is driving us nuts. What is reasonable in terms of noise for someone practicing their instrument? Is it legal to give music lessons out of an apartment?
talk to the LL...I bought a treadmill not realizing it made noise to the apartment below me and I made arrangements with my neighbor when I would use it...if the student doesn't want to work with you the LL will send her a letter. If you can hear the noise through your wall than it's not reasonable noise.
give her reasonable hours to play (and be generous). If she is unwilling to be reasonable, then do what I did with my neighbor who apparently thought he was Luciano Pavarotti. Just follow the instructions.
1.) Take your stereo speakers and put them directly up against the common walls.
2.) Turn on Pearl Jam. (something like Dissident will work)
4. No I mean LOUD.
5.) Knock on her door and ask her if she likes Pearl Jam.
6.) Ask her again politely if she would consider a reasonable compromise.
7.) If not, repeat steps 1 thru 4 just prior to leaving for the weekend.
This worked. I promise.
Unless your neighbor's apartment is zoned for office/commercial use, it's totally illegal for her to give lessons. It's time to get the LL after her. Also, try calling 311. They may have suggestions about recoursive actions and/or writer her a letter about the complaint.
I suggest you hire her an instructor. Clearly she's not getting better. Be part of the solution!
pearl jam...thats awesome
She is within her legal rights to practice her choice of musical instrument until 10PM every night. As for the musical lessons - she is allowed to do that as well (e.g. home business, as long as a certain number of foot traffic/customers per day isn't exceeded.
dissedent! nice! brings back great memories.
1OneWon: curious is you have a source for that 10PM fact
Problem is your involved in a negotiation with no leverage.
Buy a drum set, or cheaper, a guitar and amp(can get a cheap set for $150), "practice" at 7 am.
If you want to spend a lil' extra money, get the Line 6 effects pod, suggested setting, purple haze.
We appreciate that she is "allowed" to play her instrument, but not as long as it interferes with our ability to live peacefully in our apartment.
The Pearl Jam solution would be a real riot.
We will definitely say something to our LL about this and start a paper trail.
try Plush by STP if dissident doesnt work
word to the wise: forget 311. forget reaching out to your landlord. forget buying a drum set or guitar and amp. you have leverage: she needs her space to be more void of external noise than you do. You just have to have faith that your problem is really HER problem. If you blink you lose. And, speaking of blinking, I'm also partial to Tool or put Chariots of Fire on REPEAT. totally.
What is "Pearl Jam"?
Or loop and leave on repeat the ride of the valkyries scene from apocolypse now.
Or record some really loud chinese people on the phone and playback. Anyone trapped on an elevator with....knows there is nothing more annoying than really loud chinese talk.
sorry, I meant Mookie Blaylock for you purists.
There's always the frame job, print up fliers and post them all over the building, "Violin Lessons in apartment XX. First 5 lessons free."
"sorry, I meant Mookie Blaylock for you purists."
I took years of violin lessons over in stuy town. My teacher made all of his students use a mute. She can easily do that!
I remember seeing the 'Pearl Jam' skirmish at work in the building where I used to live--guy downstairs played a cello and guy upstairs would crank his speakers against the floor to try to smoke him out. It was a bitter battle that never seemed to have a winner.
That said, we did something similar in our current rental--had a pair of Carmine Gotti lookalikes living next door who liked to blast the TV, talk loudly on the phone and play tacky techno tunes at all hours... After speaking to them a couple of times we would gently remind them that the wall worked both ways by blasting our alarm at 4am when my husband got up for work. It did the job beautifully.
Ha. I am sure the neighbor would love if I started making a bunch of noise when I get up and out at 5am.
Indeed, if she's up at 5, may be taking a nap at 6 pm instead.
But the noise should be violin related so she gets the message.....maybe "Fiddler on the Roof?" Though that scratchy song would be even more annoying, is it "Miracle of Miracles?"
It's actually an interesting problem.
Violin girl does need to practice daily. One hour per day before 8pm in the house would seem reasonable.
Giving lessons in the apartment would be unreasonable.
Be clear with the parents.
One Hour and then it's Pearl Jam to the rescue!
Age might incline me towards Hendrix.
Purple haze all in my brain
Lately things just don't seem the same
Acting funny and I don't know why
Excuse me while I kiss the sky
Purple haze all around
Don't know if I'm going up or down
Am I happy or in misery?
Whatever it is that girl put a spell on me
Purple haze all in my eyes
Don't know if it's day or night
You've got me blowin', blowin' my mind
Is it tomorrow or just the end of time
Help me, help me
I don't know
Can't go on like this
TripleP, Violin doesn't project that much. Could be that your TV is heard louder on the other side than the unfortunate violin.. Imagine being captive to Fox News.
Difficult problem. As s parent to two string musicians, I sympathize, but wonder whether any reasonable stereo volume would be perceived even louder? Plan to inquire what YO YO's (or Yeou-Chengs) parents did to enable their kids' careers.
Earplugs, Flents, the white wax type. 6 packs. Work well against snoring and teeth grinding. This kid might be the next Heifetz. try to work it out?
falco: latest rumor: Hendrix murdered by his manager, says former aide
it's been widely reported lately. Who knows?
Clearly, a majority of the posters here haven't heard of the 10,000 hour rule. Practice, practice, practice....
Tappy knows he's telling lies. It didn't happen that way.
Jimi was a big, strong guy. Nobody could have forced him to drown in red wine.
Death by red wine water-boarding?!
(As if it would not have been investigated and supported by facts, until decades after Jimi's death.)
Jimi planned to see Eric Clapton, on the night of his death. Monika was with Jimi. She awoke to find him, O.D.'d on various substances. She called the ambulance. She also called a few of Jimi's friends.
Tappy is an opportunist. Everybody in the music biz knows that.
Who knows? We know.
Ta ta, Tappy.
ub ba tu bba:
Welcome to SE.
i have sympathy for both parties here. as someone who had to practice piano for hours every day and go to school it would have been very difficult to meet the needs of a neighbor (we lived in a house, so this wasn't an issue). and i'm wondering about the desire to decrease someone's income. if it is indeed legal, then it sucks but it is urban life.
suburban life has its ups and downs as well. we moved because of a barking dog (no joke, really, parents not too wise) to a much inferior school district when i was entering fifth grade. our new neighbors had two barking dogs, both of whom were louder than the last one.
Blast "The Orange Blossom Special".
It's the great challenge to any fiddle-player.
Only a fine fiddle-player can play it .
Lesser players are brought to shame; just hearing it.
one of my wishes for 2011 is that people stop quoting malcolm gladwell bs as if it's fact
Do any of you seriously think that the annoyance of a violinist practicing (a violinist at least competent enough to be giving private lessons to kids) is comparable to that of having loud rock music blasted through the walls by pushing speakers up against walls and turning the volume on full blast? Wow.
Of course not. One is great music played by professionals; the other is a bunch of amateurs with fiddles and sticks.
Wild, crazy guess: she's an Asian American adult, and you think she's a child who should do what she's told?
>this kid is driving us nuts
The noise may be annoying, but you're out of line here. Maybe first you need to figure out that you're not this person's superior. Then you can treat her properly, like an adult, when you discuss the noise issue.
>She seems not to be interested in this suggestion.
Smug locutions aside, what does this mean? DId she slam the door in your face? Or did she agree to play more softly but then didn't play softly enough for your taste?
> We have also learned that she is now giving lessons to little kids out of her apartment.
Cute phraseology, but is this really just a rumor? You're annoyed by a sound you can't even hear? Or are you guessing at this, based on the different sounds you're hearing? Or do you see kids coming to her apartment and handing her money in exchange for lessons?
I suggest you talk to the super or LL rather than resorting to ridiculous self-help. Also try talking to other neighbors & see if they, too, are bothered by this loathsome noise. Remember, any of your ridiculous 'retaliation' will be 'enjoyed' by the other neighbors, too. Ain't city living a bitch?
A few thousand dollars to soundproof a wall is easy to do. But, your a renter so, that's probably not an option.
I think the OP needs to chill out. Using very loud speakers against the wall will get you in trouble - if the girl knows to call 311 to complain, let the police officers in her room for witness, or calls the super and landlord about your assault.
Noise is a fact of life here. Either man-up and soundproof your wall or move out. The violinist isn't be the rude one hear, the OP is.
spelling nazi's... (you're)
Leaving aside the subject question of whose music is better/worse, I think this complaint began as a complaint about the audibility of sounds from a neighboring apartment. Decibelwise, my guess is Pearl Jam recordings played through speakers at loud volume pushed up against the wall is ..... a lot more decibels. Then there's some mention in a post about leaving it running and leaving for the weekend. And who is the bad neighbor?
And the violinist rented the wrong apartment, because not only are the walls not thick enough, but she has apparently picked a building with 20-something and 30-something residents who she might have guessed from the address and other subtle indications do not welcome practicing violinists. She should soundproof the walls, ask the landlord for a different apartment in the building or another building, and immediately look for another apartment, because even though she has every right to practice violin in her apartment, she is not only unwelcome, but unwelcome in an extremely smug, intolerant building where there is no solution.
for the violinist - not cheap, but upon moving, s/he can disassemble and reassemble - all problems s/he has in this apartment will recur - these practice-room gadgets are truly hermetic
Perhaps you can sign up for a 1hr lesson with your neighbor, gladly pay cash up front, and then verbally (and loudly) berate her until you feel better. She makes money, you feel better; everyone wins.
truthskrs's got the solution--get a loop machine and a mike, and create all sorts of fun "new music" pieces for broadcast nextdoor
she will beg for grand funk railroad by the time youre done with her
Whisper room is genius!
Once you get over the 'gas chamber' look it might be a welcome addition to anyone's tiny apartment.
I've got a daughter I'd like to banish to the 'whisper room' upon occasion. The only way it will work for her is if the door slams loud.
Boss_Tweed: I have no idea who you are, but you are very grumpy and have poor reading comprehension.
Yes, we know she is a “kid” as she is still in college (by her own admission).
>The noise may be annoying, but you're out of line here.
Have you even read any of our posts? We have been nothing but super sweet to this violinist, but she has not been willing to meet us halfway and adjust some (not all) of her practice time to be considerate. It is NOT unreasonable to want peace and quiet in our apartment. We have NOT launched a Pearl Jam bomb on her, nor have we escalated this to management. We want a simple, neighborly solution.
> We have also learned that she is now giving lessons to little kids out of her apartment. Cute phraseology, but is this really just a rumor?
No, not a rumor. We have seen parents + kids enter and leave her apartment for lessons. We heard one child’s parents discussing practice times “before the next lesson” in the elevator. This is not a figment of our imagination.
>Violin doesn't project that much. Could be that your TV is heard louder on the other side than the unfortunate violin.. Imagine being captive to Fox News.
How did you get from our desire for peace and quiet in our apartment to blasting Fox News? And actually, depending on the thickness of the walls, carpeting, etc. – violins can be quite loud.
And to clear up some confusion - we have NO intention of blasting music against the shared wall. That was another poster's recommendation. We simply thought it was a funny response.
Since we very clearly value quiet in our apartment (as do the other quiet, friendly, respectful neighbors on our floor), we would not act in a way that was incongruent to our values.
>Yes, we know she is a “kid” as she is still in college (by her own admission).
Admission? Is being in college a crime, now?
Treat your neighbor like the rent-paying adult she is and maybe you'll get somewhere.
>We have seen parents + kids enter and leave her apartment for lessons.
>We heard one child’s parents discussing practice times “before the next
>lesson” in the elevator. This is not a figment of our imagination.
So you're upset because she has guests at her home who DISCUSS MUSIC LESSONS in the elevator?
I understand you don't want to hear someone else's music in your home, but you're not helping your cause here.
> So you're upset because she has guests at her home who DISCUSS MUSIC LESSONS in the elevator?
No, the OP is clearly bothered that not only the sucky violinist comes through his wall, but the suckier students of the sucky violinists.
> Treat your neighbor like the rent-paying adult she is and maybe you'll get somewhere.
Paying rent means you don't have to follow the rules or be a good neighbor? Good to know.
'No, the OP is clearly bothered that not only the sucky violinist comes through his wall, but the suckier students of the sucky violinists."
I can vividly imagine right now the sound of a poorly played violin....not fun.
Can't believe this is only 59.95;
I myself would be inclined to pick one up and play dueling banjos with the neighbor.
"Johnny rosin up your bow and play your fiddle hard. Cause hell's broke loose in Georgia and the devil deals the cards."
The theme from Deliverance
... squeal like a pig
TripleP:Try my "Orange Blossom Special" suggestion.
Just play any pro solo recording of it. Blast it loud enough to be heard by her. (No bass, drums or thumping noise involved).
When you next see her, tell her how much you enjoy fine fiddle playing and ask if she could please play hers before late evening hours.
Bond over "Orange Blossom Special".
(sucky violin is like screeching on a blackboard.)
Invite the violinist over to play during one of your parties. Befriend her and make her understand that you respect music. You'll have her in the palm of your hand. When you ask her to only play during certain hours, watch how agreeable she is. This is the type of scenario that Dale Carnegie would cover in, "How to win friends and influence people."
Southern country/rock meets bluegrass.
Yeah, that's a good idea:
TripleP can knock on her door with a banjo and ask if she'd like to jam.
Just being neighborly.
The key is she's a poor player, nothing worse than something like that seeping through the walls.
I'd love if the girl playing the fiddle on HBO's Treme lived next door.
truthskr: Now, THAT'S fine fiddle playing!
Speaking of Orange Blossom Spec
9 years old
Black Sabbath's first album might do more mental damage than Pearl Jam. Actually, something like old Slayer (Reign in Blood era) or [new] Solace (any album) would really do the job, but I doubt either would be readily accessible to the average SE poster.
truthskr: That's a good one!
start at step 1.
Truthskr10, it's not clear that TripleP has claimed that she is a poor player. He has said that he is bothered by the sound. I posit that any college age student practicing 2 hours or more a day is a music performance major, possibly at Mannes, Manhattan School, or Julliard. And the fact the she is able to find paying students further supports this theory. Going one step further, all hypothetically, a very large percentage of string players nowadays are Asian, and many studying in NYC are from abroad. Perhaps there was a communication problem with our student? Is English her native language? Does she live near her college, where there should be practice rooms available by sign-up. Perhaps TripleP will offer to pay for her cab fare in the evening to enable her to use the school's practice rooms. Could she practice in the building's laundry room? Help her carry down her music stand.
When Joshua Bell played in the NYC Subways in 2007 during morning rush hour, no one paid notice. Google it.
She may be the next Erica Morini or Midori.
Excuse this long post, my longest ever. I have an affinity for young string players.
gaongaon: They're playing the best that they can.
The best street/subway buskers have always been fiddle and uke players.
Joe Strummer of The Clash started out busking on the Underground.
> She may be the next Erica Morini or Midori.
And the person whose life she might be screwing up might be the founder of the next Google.
That doesn't excuse uncivility.
> When Joshua Bell played in the NYC Subways in 2007 during morning rush hour, no one paid notice.
I think you mean the Washington Metro. And folks pay plenty of attention to mediocre acts, especially if they are cute kids. Why does it matter?
You need a permit to play the subway. And you can't make all the noise you want during whatever hours you want.
Their had to be a day in the life of Elton John when music was new to him.
Everyone starts somewhere, usually at the begining.
Good thing the Joel family didn't live next to us.
Garcia had to start somewhere too. Think the neighbors were complaining about the noise or the smoke?
Jerry lived in a house of his family of musicians; growing up during his early childhood... Nobody complained.
In the Haight, during the early days of the Grateful Dead, there was music and smoke in the air -- all around. Nobody complained.
"The music never stopped..." (Garcia, the "Grateful Dead")
You are correct: Every great muscic-player has to start somewhere.
An apartment in Manhatten is quite different.
Ya I hear ya except I doubt anyone majoring at Juliard gets the word "screeching" as a descriptor of their work and/or their practice, or at least won't be a student much longer.
And while the neighbor may be okay, it is highly likely, those she are teaching are not.
I practice with my guitar quite often and it is a luxury that Im able to with headphones where you cannot witha violin, I recognize that. I wouldn't dream of disturbing the neighbors, and with my acoustic, only in the living room away from any neighboring walls.
If a neighbor was bothered I would stop immediately.
I get the feeling TripleP would take great pleasure at being serenaded every night at dinner if it sounded good.
>Befriend her and make her understand that you respect music.
>You'll have her in the palm of your hand. When you ask her to
>only play during certain hours, watch how agreeable she is.
OP, I'm not suggesting you should enjoy hearing your neighbor's music. But please don't be a jerk just because you don't like hearing her practice -- not to her, and not to the rest of us.
trusthskr10 - The violinist is not *bad*, but not terribly good either. Something more like an intermediate player, but certainly not a student at Juliard (at least not for her violin skills).
And Boss_Tweed: Really? Despite your crazy cracked up imaginings, we have never acted like a "jerk" to this person. I really think you might be delusional, or remembering some bad experience you had with a "jerk" neighbor. And I can't really understand how any of our responses on this post could possibly be construed as acting like a jerk "to the rest of us". Starting to think you might be troll.
Gaongaon: There is no language problem with the violinist. And the closest college/ university is several subway stops away. The rent on this apartment is quite steep considering it is a studio, and by no means affordable to an average NYC college student. We are not paying for her taxi to/ from a practice space if she has means enough to afford her pricey apartment.
Record one of her two hour practice sessions. Play it when she's finished, at your estimation of her decibel level. Alternately, have an SE meetup at your place and we can all rate her..
Sorry to be so flippant, I really can empathize with both of you.
G you are onto the best idea yet, record one of her sessions, play it back to her at her volume 8 to 10 AM.
Fair enough. And we do understand why she wants to practice (hence the reason we have not been "jerks") and would rather not make a big deal out of this all to management. We will likely suggest a mute or some of the soundproofing suggestions that have been offered in posts above if this continues to be a problem.
TripleP, are you a music critic? that sounds really harsh and is not meant to be so. I just find it extraordinary that a college student who is not in a music performance major would be practicing two hours a day. I'm assuming that she's playing classical music. Perhaps the Bach sonatas? Perhaps not your cup of tea? My two progeny, who are each, in different ways, "supporting themselves" playing a string instrument NEVER practiced two hours a day. Her dedication is noteworthy and deserves respect. For if she's not a performance major she may be spending many hours a day reading Kierkegaard or organic chemistry. And yet she perserveres with the violin. Laudable in my estimation.
I think you should see this movie.
If she's a full-time student she probably needs that 6-8 pm slot to practice because she's in classes and in between classes and traveling all day. I love people's suggestion that she use the practice rooms at MSM or Juilliard, etc. MSM has about one practice room per several hundred students.
when i was much younger i lived in a hell's kitchen building that primarily catered to broadway sorts (although i did not know that when i signed the lease). i got broadway songs, both past and present, non-stop. we moved when the lease was up (for space).
this is NYC. she has every right to teach out of her apartment and practice until 8:00 p.m. it sucks, but that is urban living.
and tripleP, i'm not calling you a "jerk". this is a difficult situation.
lowery: That's probably right. Maybe practicing up to around 8pm would be a good compromise.
>And I can't really understand how any of our responses on this post
>could possibly be construed as acting like a jerk "to the rest of us".
Well, for a start there's this:
>Boss_Tweed: I have no idea who you are, but you are very grumpy and have poor reading comprehension.
There's also this:
>Starting to think you might be troll.
And just to doubly clear, I didn't call you a jerk; I asked you--please--not to be one. Thanks.
And as I suggested before I found your initial post patronizing, including this:
> but this kid is driving us nuts.