July 17th, 2007


Phone love

Sometimes on my way to work, I stop on the way to get coffee at my favorite local place, which happens to be right next to the main Muni station for the financial district. This station tends to get the best subway musicians, probably because the banker types who work in the area give the biggest tips. Today, there was a string quartet there, quite good, playing Pachabel's Canon. And this woman stood right in front of them, so close that at first I thought she was part of the group, her eyes closed, holding out a cellphone to catch the sound. I've never seen anything like it, at least not in this context.

Anyway, I wandered off to get my coffee. By the time I got back into the station, they'd moved on to "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik". Crowd-pleasers, to be sure, but at least they were being played beautifully. I wish I'd had more time to stop and listen. As always when I hear good subway musicians, I'm reminded of this experiment sponsored by the Washington Post, in which world-class violin soloist Joshua Bell played in a Metro station during morning rush hour. Fascinating read, btw, definitely worth your time to watch the videos if you haven't seen it before.