33 Replies to “Sunday Open Thread: Bach – Cello Suite No. 1”

    1. Grrrr. Should have come out 21st. Bachspace key too close to other stuff on my phone.

    2. I notice they got the whole train to themselves and wonder how. Did they record this at 3 in the morning?

    3. Also nobody at the stations.

      That first station shot looks like the east end of Westlake sans the artwork, only the train is going the wrong direction.

      I was on a southbound 70s one afternoon, SRO of course, and there were at least four musicians going to play at the symphony hall. They were wearing formal jackets and had black instrument cases, including a large double bass case on wheels.

      1. When I was in college (University of Illinois) I played in bands and had a few concerts where I switched between three different clarinets over the course of the concert. At worst I’d have to shuttle around Bâ™­, bass, and contra-alto clarinets to rehearsals and concerts. Some of the bus drivers gave me a hard time, especially when they had the older buses with all 2×2 seating and narrow aisles…

      2. Musicians riding 70 somewhat surprises me. My natural assumption would be that Benaroya Hall offers free parking, as a matter of policy, for any musicians performing there, and that the bus would be for members of the audience.

      3. Interesting, if it’s Barcelona: Pablo Casals, Catalan cellist, brought the cello suites to light; these musicians would now playing them underground, also in Catalonia.

        (that said, I daresay Casals would not approve of their metronomic interpretation — just because the trains arrive on time doesn’t mean the notes have to)

        (oh god, metro-nomic?)

  1. Does anyone know where to find a complete detailed list of all of the projects in the proposed transportation package?


      1. “…I have come to the conclusion that the making of laws is like the making of sausages—the less you know about the process the more you respect the result.”

        -Attributed to Otto von Bismarck, who didn’t say it but said a lot of other really good stuff…

        Sorry, Glenn. Couldn’t resist. Also, since air-conditioned chambers are recent, in those days everybody caught the whole reference.

        Probably also true that, like artisan cheese, the worse it smells short term, the better the quality long term. Everybody in the Pearl District knows that!

        Fil, your question as to agenda. This morning, first order of all ST-related business is to retrieve from the files a good video of LINK’s musical event a couple years back.

        Classical in one car, jazz in the other. Ridership the crush loads for which those Japanese cars are designed- smoothest ride over any before or since.

        Even ordinary airport passengers, who could have been offended by the crowding and noise (which would really have been a lot more likely in Seattle) wild over the whole thing.

        Title video here mainly shows power of massed cellos for bloodless crowd dispersal- though could be against the Geneva Conventions when bagpipes are available. Which in turn are likely the reason everybody thinks more UN peace keeping troops come from Sweden than Scotland.

        Only mass evacuation caused the ST music was when every single pigeon south of the Space Needle disappeared in a thunder cloud of feathers with the opening riff from the rock band outside the old train station.

        Written suggestion that we now had poison-free means to persuade the pigeon world to find another place beside Tukwila International to go die went nowhere. Audubon Society, I suppose.

        Meantime- wonder how many subway passengers above are packed into the rest of the train, pathetically gluing their headphones into their ears to avoid their skulls caving in.

        So first ST-related agenda item should be call from the Governor and both political parties to this group’s agent while they’re still resin-ing their strings for the next atrocity.

        Waterfront with Second Subway to Metalline Falls will be a snap for boring capacity that can also clear a river of mud with its own suction.


      2. When I was living in the dorms at the U, somebody suggested the elevators should play classical music going up and AC/DC going down.

  2. Now, during the WSTT post a days ago, I saw number of people advocating for a First Hill/SLU/Uptown corridor, but not seeming to know exactly what they wanted from it. I’ve got something from my “Seattle Metro” concept that does exactly that: The Northern part of Line 3. Going north from Mt Baker LINK and turning onto Rainer, continuing north as it transitions to Boren and then Fairview, then turning left at Mercer and continuing west to the site of the WSTT’s uptown station. Stations would be as follows:

    -Mt Baker



    -Yesler Terrace


    -Convention Center





    1. I like the idea for a route. However, rather than spending a couple hundred million dollars laying streetcar track for something that’s going to stuck in the same traffic as a bus, it makes far more economic sense to simply operate it as a bus. For instance, one could imagine the 8 following your route, provided that some route could be found to take over service down MLK.

      1. No, the idea here is that this would be a potential future extension for LINK, as a Light Rail Subway. (My Seattle Metro project has this same segment as a Heavy Rail Subway, and does something similar to Central LINK, but uses Rainer instead of MLK.)

    2. So as we are looking another tunnel downtown, do we want to be able to convert it in the future from a light rail subway to a heavy rail subway with its higher capacity (afterall Central Link will be at capacity in about 10-15 years)? Obviously being shared with buses kind of puts the kibosh on that but light rail can have high platforms (see LA) which is also what heavy rail subways need. This tunnel would be separate from the DSTT so it could have different rail rolling stock with high level boarding.

      1. AFAIK there is no real inherent capacity advantage to heavy rail.

        The reason heavy rail is often seen to be higher capacity is due to longer train lengths, grade separation, and shorter headways. None of this is an inherent property of heavy rail.

        See the Green Line in Boston which handles a lot of riders every day.

      2. The Seattle Metro is an Alternate History project, detailing the history of a Seattle that did choose to build a Heavy Rail system. I was just pointing that one part of my allohistorical Metro Lines would also make sense as a LINK extension in ST4 or ST5, if those ever happen.

    1. Ha! I saw a guy carrying 10 feet of wood stove pipe on the bus once. THAT’s manspreading.

  3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Port_Vell_Aerial_Tramway



    Thanks, aw.

    Looks like venue for the cello concert really could be the heavy rail subway in Barcelona.

    My criticism really was never meant for the young musicians, but the producer who gave them such a dismal, dark, and boring setting for their performance. Thought existential gloom was passe in Europe by now.

    But it’s a real travesty to do anything like this to Barcelona. Which has always been the most energetic, imaginative, and most non-gloomy place in Spain. Which through history, I think a lot of its residents resisted being part of.

    In addition to a beautiful modern tramway system, Barcelona has some amazing other features. Starting with an amazing aerial tramway.

    An architect named Antonio Gaudi left an awesome park with a structure of tiled buildings, and apartment building in the same style, and a cathedral whose tile looks like sea creatures.

    Unfortunately, this architect’s only transit connection was to get killed by a streetcar. Probably non-preventable. The poor man was distracted by destitution. No one recognized him.

    And quintessential Barcelona: In 1854, a young man from a family barrel-making firm early on came to realize the best shape and construction for a durable submersible ocean-going craft.

    Any harbor city saw many floating barrels, some branded with emblems suggesting a long float. Not only did Narcis Monturiol invent an air-purification system, but he was on his way to a modern engine.

    Some institutional things don’t change, though, including high command mentality. Invention that could’ve made Spain world-conquering naval power got scrapped because the admirals on ships watching the demonstration got seasick.

    So a hundred years later, Admiral Rickover remembered to order that any officer claiming seasickness would be put in command of a barrel- which Rickover very reluctantly rejected for our nuclear deterrent. The original sub is on display in Barcelona harbor.

    Anyhow: would be good to invite those cellists over for a LINK remake- with jazz musicians in the second car. And starting the event with an experiment to test a cello’s effect on pigeons.


  4. I don’t know if this has been answered before but what is the source for announcements made on KC Metro and Sound Transit buses prior to many stops? It does not appear to be a synthesized voice.

    1. If you are referring to the female voice that announces the next stop, it’s text-to-speech. Trust me, I can tell by the intonation used when the system repeats common phrases like “…Park & Ride,” “…Transit Center,” or “…with ORCA card vending machines.”

      In the case of the male voice that announces things like, “Please exit through the rear door. Thank you,” or “This is the last stop. All passengers should de-board at this time,” that is pre-recorded. When I looked over a driver’s shoulder and saw him selecting the announcement to announce from the screen to his right, the top of the screen said “Choose Canned Announcement” (“canned” is slang for pre-recorded).

      1. “The TRAIN is being held due to traffic ahead. The TRAIN will be moving shortly. We apologize for the delay.”

        Lord, I hate that announcement, and would like to see it canned and fed to a dog. Northbound stuck in the tube almost into Westlake Station, pm rush hour, passengers deserve the truth:

        “The TRAIN is being held because of the inane policy of farebox revenue collection, added to system’s 20 year long failure to turn on a fortune’s worth of dispatch signals, plus operator training a fifth of what is needed.

        The TRAIN will be moving in approximately fifteen earth minutes.

        The people of REMULAK- which is in FRANCE-apologize for failure to invade. In fifteen Earth MINUTES you will be released to go home and ingest MASS QUANTITIES of beer and fiberglas insulation!”

        This is why invasions from Outer Space draw so little human resistance.


  5. So, what city is this? My first guess would be New York, as some of the newer New York subway trains look similar to the train in the video. The New York subway also has express trains that sometimes take 3+ minutes to travel between stops. (In the video, the train didn’t stop once). The only problem is, nobody else on the train suggests it’s the middle of the night, and the New York Subway generally does not run express trains in the middle of the night. Perhaps it was one of those nights where they had to run trains on the express track because the local track was closed for maintenance work.

    1. If AW has the source film and corresponding filming locations correct above, then it is Barcelona. Dresden has no tunnels, and Leipzig’s S-bahn tunnel opened six years after the movie was made. The musicians look like they could be Catalan as well.

      And it’s a closed set — at least three stations are passed during the course of the shot.

    2. Watch closely in the video again.

      1. The first sight is of a joint between two cars. NO system in the USA other than the Cascades Talgo has such barrier free passageways between completely separate cars, and even that has doors between them.

      2. There is almost no car to car differential in rocking motion between the cars across the joint. Wherever this is, it has excellent track. Thus, no system in the USA.

      3. At the very start and very end of the video, if you look very closely you will see that this line has an overhead system rather than 3rd rail.

      Barcelona certainly seems like the most likely candidate when you look at the photos of their system:

      Based on the very dark ends, I think it is probably this stock:

  6. My guess? Musicians sat on rows of real seats. Car interiors and train motion were computer simulations. Outside video footage was just shown over and over again.

    Simulation of our own musical event would’ve done the mode much more credit. We could’ve laced the passenger load with cartoon jungle animals and taxicabs, and King County Sheriff’s deputies whose side-arms shoot bullets that look like little bandits of various ethnicities.

    In special on “Who Framed Roger Rabbit”, producer showed a faucet creating a stream of water which on film came out of a character’s mouth. Bob Hoskins showed how he went through motions of strangling Roger- first going through strangling motions- then with computer animation added.

    Meantime, like Bob’s take would have been on current discussion in Olympia: “I shoulda known that whole Freeway idea could only a’ been thought up by a Toon!” Anybody know where we can rent a block-and-tackle, a piano, a safe, and a steamroller?

    However: fact these things can only kill cartoon villains “When It’s Funny!” makes for a small window of opportunity.


    1. Maybe.

      However, the occasional vanishing of the previous car in the distance as the train goes around the occasional curve would not have been exceptionally easy to do.

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