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Re: Nighttime Shot of 3rd Ave El at 67th Street (1953)

Posted by JOE @ NYCMTS - NYCTMG on Thu Nov 30 16:21:25 2017, in response to Re: Nighttime Shot of 3rd Ave El at 67th Street (1953), posted by Express Rider on Thu Nov 30 15:00:07 2017.

Hello Express Rider

Speaking of MOODY and "SAXAPHONE player -- you reminded me of something from so long ago ....

About 5:30 PM certain weekday nights to about near 7PM, there was a middle aged guy who played songs on a saxaphone across the street from my top floor tenement bedroom windows in the early 1950's -- up thru to about 1957 or so. I think he took the EL home (and to my block) because he stopped playing just before 7PM and walked up towards the station stairs near the S/E corner to catch the last train north for the night. The N/B EL station stairway for my station on the S/E corner side was about 50 feet from where he played.
His playing was quite melodic and very good !

After the 3rd Ave EL closed on Thursday night, May 12, 1955, we missed him for a few months or so -- and then one night he returned and played even beyond 7PM (usually 6 to 9 PM) -- I assume he now took the 1 block away IRT Lexington Avenue Subway to get to his "sidewalk stage" across the street from my home ! And continued his 2 or 3 nights routine again as usual..but now some nights were on WEEKENDS !.

People would listen out the apartment (tenements) house windows and toss coins to him wrapped in a paper towel piece of newspaper, or paper from a pad, or even toilet paper -- so the coin(s) would stay contained when they landed on the sidewalk. And passers by dropped coins into his small plastic bucket. He stood while he played --- it was soulful melancholy style music -- perhaps classics like Gershwin songs and such.

Summer and winter -- 2 or 3 nights a week, he was regularly there (perhaps he scored more $$$ on my block !)

Memories of my old and quiet U E S neighborhood by the EL --- not like that any more and certainly no longer quiet after 7 PM at night !

It was so quiet I could hear the thunka-daaa-clunk of the old huge wooden turnstiles being turned in the station house below my windows...as well as the MUDC EL trains whining to a squealing stop...car compressors humming, and the motor gearing distant groans as the old wooden EL train departed. My home was about 75 feet from the station.

I haven't thought about "the sax man" for 50 or more years until now --

Regards - Joe F


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