Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Gershwin plays rock music for free

Saturday it was pouring rain. The kind of rain that soaks you to the bone and makes your clothes stick..

I was on the subway going to Joes pub to see Susan Werner. I was sitting there listening to my nonIPOD Ipod and sitting next to me was 4 Teens. they were over 17 but still High Schoolers or maybe first year college guys. Onto the train, walked a guy from Brighton Beach with his clarinet. He slowly began to play "summertime"

One of the 4 young men who was holding his friend's Ipod told him that he could play that song . The other young man was not familiar with the song. It said it was rock music. I was listening to these two young men to make sure that they were talking about Summertime. They couldnt remember the name of the song.... as they kept talking about the song...I couldnt resist...

I told them.. it wasnt rock but was not really Jazz but the song comes from Porgy and Bess. It was written by George Gershwin as an opera. It was from the 30s. The young man who called it rock said.. he didnt know the name but could play it..and the other man was familar with "summertime"

the clarinetist came down our end of the train and I gave him a dollar. I asked him if he knew Joni MItchell's FOR FREE. I guess he thought i was making a request and in his broken english..he asked me if i wanted a classical piece. I asked him if he knew FOR FREE.. He played a classical piece and at the next stop got off the train..

For Free
by Joni Mitchell


I slept last night in a good hotel
I went shopping today for jewels
The wind rushed around in the dirty town
And the children let out from the schools
I was standing on a noisy corner
Waiting for the walking green
Across the street he stood
And he played real good
On his clarinet for free

Now me I play for fortunes
And those velvet curtain calls
I've got a black limousine
And two gentlemen
Escorting me to the halls
And I play if you have the money
Or if you're a friend to me
But the one man band
By the quick lunch stand
He was playing real good for free

Nobody stopped to hear him
Though he played so sweet and high
They knew he had never
Been on their T.V.
So they passed his music by
I meant to go over and ask for a song
Maybe put on a harmony
I heard his refrain
As the signal changed
He was playing real good for free


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