The Subway Sings Somewhere

Today’s song is The Subway Sings Somewhere, the latest addition to my new genre of music, “electromonica.” Although this is probably closer to “industromonica.”

New York City’s newer computerized subway cars, first introduced about five years ago, have a new kind of power transformer that, when the train starts up, makes a series of tones that sound very musical, with which this song opens. People identify them most often as the opening notes to “Somewhere,” from West Side Story.

Every few years, The New York Times notices this, and runs a bunch of articles, most recently a front-page column by the normally more enterprising Jim Dwyer. They’ve been writing about this at least since 2002 but I guess he didn’t bother to read back.

Anyway, this seemed like a good excuse for a song. (In February, everything is a good excuse for a song.) If you can call this a song. It’s mostly made up of sounds I recorded in the subway yesterday, mixed with some loops and heavily treated harmonica. Most of the rhythm bed is looped track noise. I’m having fun and doing a lot of experimentation this year for FAWM, and while I’m not exactly sure this works, I very much enjoyed doing it. A video may be along to accompany it later in the week.

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