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Humans of Oxford | Nick Froehlich — Pianos and politics

By Alison Perelman, For The Miami Student

Nick Froehlich can be seen playing the piano in the lobby of Scott Hall three hours a day, every day.

"It's my Netflix," said Nick, laughing.

He's been playing the piano for 13 years, but only started learning to read sheet music four months ago. Before that, he taught himself by ear.

Nick's older brother had been taking piano lessons, so he became interested, too.

"Like brothers do, we always try and one-up each other," Nick said.

So when his brother was struggling with playing, Nick would try to play better. Eventually, his brother got frustrated and quit. Nick kept playing.

"I was hooked," Nick said.

He plays at piano bars in Cincinnati - his way of paying for college.

He doesn't have a favorite song, but his least favorite is a classic piano bar tune - "Piano Man" by Billy Joel. He doesn't actually think it's a bad song, he just has some critiques and is sick of playing it. Which is unfortunate considering Nick can also play the harmonica.

"Piano Man" is good for him financially, though. He changes the lyrics from, "put bread in my jar," to "they put tips in my jar," stops playing, and won't continue until someone actually puts a tip in his jar.

"I have the most fun playing 'Piano Man,' though, I will say that … if you have to play something you might as well have fun with it," Nick said.

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Nick dreams of becoming a cruise ship pianist and getting paid to travel the world, but also has political ambitions.

"I'm really into music, but politics is also my favorite thing to do," said Nick.

He's a first-year political science major and currently runs the "Ohio Students for Bernie Sanders" group. He hopes to run for office, but isn't sure which one.

In about five years, he'll probably be mayor of the small town he grew up in, Lebanon, Ohio.