Sunday, September 4, 2011

Music in the Streets

Every time I walk out my front door in North Beach feels a little like going to Disneyland. There is so much to see, and hear.

Walking home from the grocery store Saturday afternoon, I stumbled upon a fantastic jazz band playing in the Savoy Tivoli on Grant Street. The music spilled onto the sidewalk through a giant open window where a pretty girl in a retro dress and her boyfriend were perched on the sill. I had serious trouble pulling myself away to bring the dinner ingredients (tomato sauce, anchovies, yellow onion) home to Ace.

Saturday afternoon jazz at the Savoy Tivoli.

Then after dinner we were walking to the movies when we encountered three comical girls (or two comics and a babe) singing a little off key right on our corner. I saw the babe and her stand-up bass again the next day on Haight, where a passerby was reaching into his wallet to make a donation before she even played a note.

Street performers on our corner.

On Sunday we took a bike ride to Golden Gate Park (down Columbus to Aquatic Park, up and over the hill that overlooks Fort Mason, along Marina Green, along Crissy Field, up and over the Presidio, and down Arguello into the luscious green park) and eventually made our way to the bandshell where the Golden Gate Park Band was playing Hollywood movie themes. My erudite friend Joe Stegall informs me the theme to 2001: A Space Odyssey was actually composed by Richard Strauss. No wonder it sounded so good!

GG Park Band: playing music for the public for 129 years.

And our route home took us down Haight Street, where a kick-ass bluegrass band was crazily cramped and encamped behind a metal grate on someone's porch.

Bluegrass band behind bars on Haight Street. Play it, boys!

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