An airport piano player earned $60,000 in tips after a stranger shared videos of him on Instagram

Posted on in category Positive News

The power of social media made a positive difference in this piano players’ life.. Read on!

Original article b

When Tonee “Valentine” Carter sits in front of a piano, his fingers take on a life of their own, dancing across the keys as he smiles, closes his eyes, and sinks into a melody.

Carter, 66, isn’t famous, but he does perform for an international audience nearly every day at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Travelers lucky enough to hear him often find themselves hypnotized by his music.
That’s what happened to Carlos Whittaker, a motivational speaker who was traveling home to Tennessee on Wednesday morning after a speaking engagement was canceled.
“I was super bummed that morning and had to reroute to Atlanta. As I was walking through the concourse, I heard someone playing the piano, and I just had to walk by them,” Whittaker, 46, told CNN. “There was Tonee, going down and going to town and I knew I just had to stay there.”
For an hour and a half Whittaker sat at the piano bar in Concourse A, listening to the music that seemed to effortlessly flow from Carter’s fingertips. The author, podcaster and Instagram influencer also took videos of the musician and shared them with his “InstaFamilia,” which include more than 200,000 followers.
Eventually, the two men began talking, even sharing intimate details about their lives.
When Carter returned to his piano, Whittaker came up with an idea.
“Suddenly I was like, what would happen if I asked my Instagram followers if we could give him the biggest tip he’s ever gotten,” he said. “Within 30 minutes, we had raised $10,000.”
In a video he shared on Instagram, Whittaker captured the moment he told Carter that a bunch of people he had never met quickly came together to raise thousands of dollars just for him.
“I just lost it. I thought he was kidding, I just couldn’t believe it. That just doesn’t happen,” Carter told CNN. “I didn’t know how to feel. This is the kind of the thing I do. I love giving and donating and helping people, but I never expected someone to do it for me.”
Before Whittaker boarded his plane, he told his followers they could continue to tip Carter on Venmo and CashApp.
“By the time I landed in Nashville, it was $20,000. And by the time I interviewed him for my podcast that night, it was $44,000. And as of this conversation, it’s at $61,000,” Whittaker said on Friday evening.