Workingman’s Art on the Square, First Friday, Take One

Piano reverie on the square, Market Square, Knoxville, April 2011

As the experiences of a First Friday broaden, it is becoming more difficult to put it all into one post or under the umbrella of a single theme. I’ve decided to break April’s First Friday into three parts: Workingman’s Art, High Art and Party Crashing. Today we’ll focus on Workingman’s Art.

Big sister gave it the gravitas while baby brother banged the blues.

Chopsticks the whole family can use – Market Square, Knoxville.

I’d heard on NPR some time back of a program in New York City to place pianos in public places. The piece included stories of some of the people who stepped up to play. Some of them banged out awesome R and B, some elevated the keyboard discourse to classical levels. Everyone who stepped up had a sometimes surprising, always interesting story of how they came to be at that keyboard at that time. Those of you who have followed my blog can imagine how much I loved the idea. I worried a little for the pianos, but loved loved loved the impulse.

Belting the R and B, Market Square, Knoxville

Songs of faith, “bringing my living room to everyone.” Market Square, Knoxville

I never imagined it would happen in Knoxville. We aren’t that cool are we? Apparently the Dogwood Arts Committee, and specifically the folks who planned Rhythm and Blooms portion, are that cool. I had a blast listening to the children, families, classically trained pianists and one rocking transvestite giving it their best.

Come on. Give it a try. This could be the new you.

Bill plays, new friend whittles, Jake hides – Market Square, Knoxville.

Also augmenting the workingman’s entertainment on the square was Salon Visage’s couture art and one woman with her child sharing her faith in song. Not the least of note was the return of Bill and Jake to the square accompanied this time by a walking-stick artist.

Serious music on the Square.

All that and then there was the professional art around town, but I’ll call that high art and that’s the next post.

By the Way – Less than a week until the end of the Metropulse Reader’s Poll. Have you voted? Please do