Ted Howe was born in Boston with a fascination for sound from the day he was born. A penchant for sound from a toddler may not always be a parent's dream. However, this love of sound grew as did that of the Red Sox from the attention he received from his Uncle Oly, who introduced him both to jazz and to baseball. Young TED listened to every jazz album he could find, attended many jazz concerts and quickly found his favorites amongst Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, Louis Armstrong, Oscar Peterson, George Shearing, Dave Brubeck and Bill Evans.
Ironically, it was his younger sister, Donna, who received weekly house calls from Sid Tratenberg, a fine Boston pianist and teacher, while young TED listened to the lessons from upstairs.
One day, half way through a lesson, Donna threw up her hands in frustration, declaring she was finished with the piano. Realizing the family had already paid for an hour, Tratenberg offered the remaining thirty minutes to TED with whom he had already been listening to jazz on TED'S custom made audio system after Donna's lessons.
And so, TED was pulled from an intense listening mode to a piano bench and for the first time began creating many of the sounds with which he had been so fascinated.
Recognizing a natural ability immediately, Tratenberg encouraged TED to continue lessons. Within one month, TED had completed many of the standard beginning piano method books. Within a year he was playing Bach to Ellington.