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  • Shivani Vora

Local Personalities: Full-Time Home Inspector, Artist and Musician on the Side

January 25, 2021

Local Personalities: Full-Time Home Inspector, Artist and Musician on the Side

Brad Beyer, 69, is a 13th generation Hamponite whose family is part of the Hildreth’s- the original settlers of the area who came from England to Southampton via Massachusetts in 1635. “My grandmother was a Hildreth, and my father was born in 1919 Sag Harbor in his grandparents house on 200 Madison Street,” says Beyer.

Although Beyer and his three brothers grew up in Sag Harbor, he’s now settled in Amagansett, in a 19th century yellow Victorian home that’s two doors away from The Roundtree on Main Street.

In addition to being a lifelong local, Beyer can claim to have a professional life that’s colorful to say the least: as the founder of Beyer: Buyer Home Inspection Services, he spends most of his waking hours as a home inspector. But his true loves are his two parts time gigs- one as a musician and the other as an artist.

Following are edited excerpts from my recent interview with Beyer about his background.

First, tell us about when and why you started your home inspection business.

I was working in Shaw Aero Devices in Wainscott NY, and the company was talking about going to Florida. I had no intention of going and happened to read an article about a home inspection franchise company ( AmeriSpec.), and how that industry was starting to take hold as "a need". I thought to myself: "I could do this. We bought a franchise and 32 years, and 3 other meltdowns later, here I am. some 20,000 + houses inspected and still going strong.

How did you get into music?

The Beyer family has been playing music on the East End for 100 years.. All my brothers are very musical. Brother Bruce is very active playing excellent drums for some of the best players out here. Our grandfather "Jake" Beyer was a vaudevillian, and he played the piano for silent movies in an early Sag Harbor theater. My dad "Robert" was a wonderful trumpet player and with his brothers Jack on trombone, and Ellis on baritone, they used to do these brass quartets.

I paid my way through college in Santa Barbara playing in jazz combos, rock & roll bands, a great Dixieland group, and all sorts of assorted musical configurations. I came back to Sag in 1974-75 and started fooling around with an old piano.

All these years later, I cannot imagine my life without playing the piano. I’m self taught.

Now let’s talk about your art, which you recently got back into after years away. What kind of artist are you and when did you first start?

I always liked to draw with charcoal and pencil. I never was trained. Eventually, the piano took over, and the art went on hold. Skip forward to 2014... after working like a dog, losing my eyesight for 10 months, getting bit by a tick and almost dying ,the economic dump of 2008 and all the other trials of life, I started thinking about doing a drawing of John Lennon for brother Bruce's 65th birthday. I picked up the pencil again. Several other works have followed, and I have vowed to find more time to do these. I believe there is a market out there.

What do you do with your finished pieces?

Most of them have been gifts for very special people: Rick Davies from Supertramp who I will play music with again once Covid goes... Mike Reilly from Pure Prairie League, also in our band with GE Smith. My piano tuner's 80th Birthday.. a Billy Joel set that I will give to him. Recently, I was commissioned to do Taylor Swift for a special friend's niece for Christmas.

Is it difficult to juggle it all?

Yes indeed... because I still have a great family and grandkids that need my attention as I need theirs. I love to read, write, sing, play and draw, and laugh... so i will never be bored. And with that... I'll go back to work.

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