Street Music—1789.details

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Street Music—1789.

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Dayes, who published a collection of street views about 1789, has given us the group which concludes our paper. Here we have the organ, the triangle, the tambourine, and the hurdy-gurdy,—each striving which should be loudest, and winning by their united exertions the applause of all bystanders. After the peace our thoroughfares gradually resounded with the somewhat improved melody of the street-singers of Paris; and a lady with a neat coiffure accompanied the organ with the monotonous chant of “Le gai Troubadour.” An Italian was now and then imported with his guitar; and his knowledge of harmony compensated for his somewhat cracked voice. All at once glee-singers started up; and they are now common. Then a “noise” or two of really tolerable insrtumental performers were to be found in Portland Place and other streets of the west; and even those who were familiar with Rossini might stop to listen. We are still advancing; and in a few years the Act which protects housekeepers from the nuisance of street musicians will be a dead letter. (p. 143)

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