Real Good, For Free

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“He was playing real good, for free”

     – Joni Mitchell, ‘For Free’.

The busker in the Joni song played the clarinet, and the songwriter expressed her admiration of the player’s skills.

Not just that he played for free, or maybe a few coins thrown into a hat – but that he was truly free to express himself, and not trapped by the machinery of the music business that she was in.

The guy in the photo, playing a community piano in Atlanta a couple of years ago when I was there, was like that. Melodies played for himself, mainly.

I’d seen someone else doing the same thing earlier that day – see Butterfly Piano Man. Never come across the concept of the community piano before, and adored it!

Both gentlemen gave me random, life-affirming moments as they played – real good, for free.

 

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