Sometimes you're on the right subway at the right time.
By Melissa Presti (Book Publisher)
I don't know about you, but there have been times where I've either been waiting for the subway or already on, and I continue to wait or continue to ride past my destination because a musician has been too good to leave.
Last week Gawker posted a video that captured one of those rare NYC moments I'm always hoping to witness - a guy traveling with bongos jammed out with a stranger as she played an original song on her ukulele and he kept the beat. Not only is she ridiculously talented, but the entire moment is ridiculously beautiful. Oh NYC, you fickle mistress, you're crazy bonkers yet capable of so much beauty.
Her name is Jessica Latshaw and she is one-half of the folk duo The Paper Janes and describes the subway encounter here:
I am waiting for the A train at 59th. Drummer guy walks by and asks me what’s in my case. “A ukulele,” I say. “Are you good?” he asks. I say, “Why don’t you listen…” He says, “Why don’t you give me your number?”
“So we can play music?” I ask.
“Among…other things…” he says.
I tell him that he can give me his number if he wants.
He can’t find a pen by the time my train comes, so he manages to get his friends to agree to jump on my train with me, which is when he and his friend (the announcer guy) ask me to play.
“You gonna sing yodel-ay-hee-hoo?!” the announcer guy says.
“Nope,” I say. “Imma sing something better than that.”
He looks surprised and maybe I sound cocky, but I’m a little annoyed because I feel like he’s making fun of me.
Drummer guy tells me he’s gonna play something in 6/8.
“You wanna play one of my songs?” I ask him.
“You might wanna play in 4, then,” I say, and we start playing…the guy across from me starts recording and the rest, you can see for yourself.
I was beyond excited to learn she'll be playing at The Local 269 this Saturday, January 14th. The Local 269 is another live music venue favorite of mine, and judging by the almost 1 million YouTube views, it might get a little crowded this weekend.
Also, now I want a ukulele.