Only in Paris?

No, probably not. One encounters buskers in most cities, especially ones with underground mass transit. The wealth of musicians playing music and hoping to get a little scratch from the busily shuffling hordes in the Paris métro’s extensive tunnels and subterranean caves is certainly not unique to La Ville-Lumière. But this past weekend, something quite unique (at least in my experience) reverberated throughout the cement hallways I walked en route to my transfer. I heard not the sounds I typically hear underground day-to-day: gypsy folk players, the clarinettist extraordinaire, the occasional accordion-double bass duo, acoustic guitarists playing and singing Dylan, and (my favorite) the blistering free jazz trios (esp. in the hallway “delta” approaching ligne cinq at République). No, instead bona fide symphonic sounds echoed throughout the tunnels. And sure enough, around one and then another corner, in the small open space where people from various trains spill out into one another, there it was, a small orchestra. And they were good! Can you name the tune they are playing?

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