There are few things that can add ambiance like music. This is true indoors and out. One of the things that I love about Chicago (mainly the loop) is there always seems to be someone performing. Most of the time it is for tips or to sell CDís, but once in a great while, it is for the enjoyment of performing. On such occasion, a saxophone player stood under the bridge at Michigan Ave away from the pedestrian traffic. There was very little chance of anyone being able to give him a tip, but the way the sound bounced of the supports of the bridge and up into the City make the streetscape become alive.
Be it a jazzy saxophone, blues trumpet, or even a bunch of guys with dowel rods playing plastic 5 gallon buckets, it seems to change the character of a place and slows people down, just for a moment, to not just pass through a place, but to experience it. With the holiday's coming up, I would be interested to see if more people will find a street corner or park bench, and pour their heart out into an instrument for all to enjoy.
What are your thoughts on street musicians? Do you have them where you live? Is there a particular time that you were arrested by the melodies created by the musical artist?