When you hear the term “Piano Man,” it’s natural to immediately think of Billy Joel. But get ready to be amazed by a new talent that deserves the spotlight. Allow me to introduce you to Donald Gould, a man who is captivating the world with his incredible piano skills.
In a viral video that took the internet by storm back in 2015, Donald Gould can be seen sitting at a piano on the streets of Florida. With his long hair and slightly disheveled appearance, he passionately delivers a mind-blowing cover of the prog-rock power ballad “Come Sail Away” by Styx. The mesmerized onlookers couldn’t believe what they were witnessing.
One person in the crowd can be heard exclaiming, “Do you know how hard that is to play?!” It’s clear that Donald’s talent is extraordinary and rarely witnessed outside of a concert hall.
But who is this remarkable piano prodigy? He goes by the name of Donald Gould, also known as “The Homeless Piano Man.” Originally from Michigan and already an accomplished musician, Donald studied music theory at Spring Arbor University. However, his life took a heartbreaking turn in 1998 when he lost his wife and subsequently, custody of his son. This devastating loss led him down a path of drug addiction and eventually homelessness.
Fortunately, fate intervened, and the viral video became a turning point in Donald’s life. With a staggering 45 million views, the video captured the world’s attention and opened doors for this former Marine Corps musician. As a result, a GoFundMe campaign was created in his name, raising an incredible $40,000. This outpouring of support allowed Donald to attend rehabilitation and provided him with the second chance he desperately needed to turn his life around. You can witness his incredible transformation in the video below.
Since this life-altering series of events, Donald Gould has achieved remarkable milestones. He had the honor of performing the “Star-Spangled Banner” at the season-opening game for the San Francisco 49ers, in front of a packed stadium. Reflecting on this accomplishment, Donald shared with ABC 7, “I couldn’t look, I had to focus. I had 80,000 people, and I had to deliver a performance.” It was a surreal experience for him, but it showcased his undeniable talent and resilience.
While Donald still faces challenges stemming from his time living on the streets, he maintains a positive outlook on life. In 2017, he released his album “Walk on Water,” sharing his unique talents with audiences all around the world. The album is now available through Triple Pop Records.
Donald Gould’s story is one of triumph over adversity, reminding us all that it’s never too late for a second chance. His remarkable journey not only touches our hearts but also serves as an inspiration to never give up on our dreams. So let us celebrate the musical genius that is Donald Gould, the true “Piano Man” of our time.