Wednesday, February 13, 2008

On the oboe busker

The buskers at Eglinton subway station almost always impress me. There’s the duo who dress up like characters from O Brother Where Art Thou? and do bluegrass and country songs; the black man with sunglasses who freely plays soulful alto sax solos; the African marimba man who is never without a smile; and the old Chinese man whose melancholy musical laments on what I think is an erhu always blend nicely with whatever melancholy indie rock I’m playing on my headphones.

Then there’s the oboe guy. Prior to today, I’d caught his act twice and on both occasions, he seemed to be doing nothing but tuning. While the oboe is a bizarre instrument to busk with, I didn’t feel he was offering enough.

Today, however, I caught him just as he completed the looped bass line (he’s got some electronic looping thingy) and started laying down a melody. I recognized it immediately but couldn’t place it. Mingus? Miles? Coltrane?

Then the lyrics popped into my head:

It's all good girl turn me on
'Til the early morn'
Let's get it on
Let's get it on 'til the early morn'
Girl it's all good just turn me on

I was impressed.


Blogger M said...

Funny, you're in Canada and I'm in NYC but you might as well have been describing the subway musician scene here! Except here there are a lot of Chinese and South American musicians, too. And there's also the 'Saw Lady' (who has a blog about what happens when she plays the saw in the subway: :)

1:57 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7:30 PM  
Blogger A. Y. Heisler said...

Dude, your best-of-2007 list is conspicuously missing The Sadies - New Seasons, which is not just the best album of 2007 but probably the best new album I've heard since high school.

7:34 PM  
Blogger Marco Ursi said...

A.Y. Heisler, as in Aaron Heisler? From Ryerson?

Haven't heard the Sadies album. I'll have to check it out.

12:48 PM  
Blogger A. Y. Heisler said...

Who else?

Also, how do you do?

3:09 PM  
Blogger Jeff bassoon said...

The Instrument you saw while related to the oboe is properly known as the bassoon. Sorry you've caught me while tuning/setting up. I actually know a few tunes from a couple of styles. If you have the time stop and say hello. You can find other clips of the me busking at and

8:23 PM  

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