Sunday, July 19, 2009

one more reason I <3 NY

Yesterday, I was riding the N train to Chinatown (as one does) when a 5-piece Mexican polka band hopped into my train car. (And no, I don't mean a Mariachi band--I mean a Mexican polka band, who played polka songs and sang in Spanish.) They wore matching uniforms of peacock blue button downs and black cowboy hats. Among their instruments was a *standing double bass.* With which they jumped on the car, played boisterously for one stop, and hopped back off. I definitely gave them a dollar.

Where else?

17 comments:

Laurel said...

Mexican polka bands make me giggle. And you're right, it is flat out oom-pah polka.

The First Carol said...

The most excitement I had on Friday was the guy who wore the kilt to work. I did not get a picture. I am now kicking myself. I pray it happens again. I love crazy people.

Sarah Laurenson said...

That's fantastic!

(Seriously adding NY to the list of places to move to.)

Being Beth said...

Love it!

Reminds me of the night in college, our jazz band finished playing a concert and about 10 of us piled into someone's car and headed out for drinks.

The car broke down (as college cars tend to do) at a busy intersection. While waiting for someone to bring us a new radiator hose, we pulled out our our horns and played ragtime on the corner. This is a RARE occurrence in Fort Worth, TX. You're more likely to see a cattle drive than musicians playing on the corner.

We made $200 in tips from folks waiting for the light which paid for the hose plus our drinks.

We had a blast.

Amanda said...

Oh that story makes me miss NYC, and I only VISITED it! I love the subway system. YOu never know what you're going to see!

Pamala Knight said...

LOL! Nowhere else. Glad it made your day.

Melanie Avila said...

We have those here, and they ARE fun! I love that they played on the train!

fyi - the music is called "banda" and this is the THIRD time it's come up today!

Chris Eldin said...

We get good stuff on the D.C. metro too. I LOVE these stories!
:-)

Heidi C. Vlach said...

Wow, is that ever cool. I clearly need to visit NY more!

Aimee K. Maher said...

I really miss the trains and the performers underground, out on the sidewalks, the kooks in Washington Square. Haven't been back to NY in almost four years. I need to change that. I'm out in pudunk where they don't even have buses or cabs!

Raethe said...

Standing double basses are awesome.

Being Beth: That's an awesome story.

WendyCinNYC said...

That's sounds much more entertaining than the "I'm collecting for the homeless" guy. (I'l give him a dollar every once in a while, but I wish he'd change his shtick.)

I'm a sucker for street performers.

whereimbloggingfrom said...

Amazing! I've only had rappers so far ...

Gretchen said...

And to think the powers that be dropped polka albums from the 2010 Grammy awards to "ensure the awards process remains representative of the current musical landscape." Looks like someone needs to ride the NY subway and see what the landscape really is.

Nora Lumiere said...

Love the writing, love the sass (s-ass)

gringo said...

I wasn't there, but if they were Mexican - even though the music might have resembled polka - it is far more likely that it was "banda".

Banda music has some roots in polka from Polish and German immigrants in the nineteenth century. The most important instrument is a tuba, although sometimes a baritone is used when a tuba can't be located. It is not unusual for a stand-up bass to be used. Usually, there is an accordian, and a snare drum, and then anything else at hand.

In most bars here in Mexico, if one sits in one place long enough one of these bands will walk in and try to make a little bit of money.

Diane said...

LOL, only in New York right?