a mid-week musical interlude (sans photo)…
Posted in music, paris, soundscapes August 19th, 2009 by pia

I don’t know about you, but my week has been rather chaotic. Not so much on the outside, but on the inside. My head is full of stuff. It is filled with to-do lists, demands, commitments, negotiations to be made, responsibilities weighing heavy, and emotions riding high. On the outside I may be cool, calm and collected but on the inside, it’s a wild and crazy ride. Rarely does my exterior expose what is going on behind the scenes. But every now and then it will bubble up, and reveal itself to those I am closest to by either snapping a sharp remark, or dismissing their needs. As much as I want to eradicate this behaviour, I am told it is called “human nature”.

What I have learnt though, over the years, is that beautiful sound and music is a wonderful, gentle technique of subjugation. It calms the soul, breathes life into the deepest, darkest commotions of the mind, and warms the heart. When you take the time to listen – just listen – then a sense of renewal is found.

I had no intention of writing all of the above as an introduction to this soundscape but somehow, it happened. And I see it is not without purpose, because what I am about to share with you is a continual, flowing moment of musical interlude that does just that: breathes life and love into a place where commotion is writhe. A moment that almost everyone who visits this special place will experience at some point. It’s a moment when one goes below the cool, calm and magnificent exterior and experiences life under the skin, below the surface, and deep in the veins of this celebrated city. The sound echoes through this labyrinthine nerve center, and penetrates through to its darkest corners.

I speak of the metro Chatelet in Paris. And today, I take you with me as I walk from one of the cavernous tunnels passing by a 12-piece orchestra that plays in this underground mecca, up the stairs and back out to the grandness above. This metro of Paris is very much like one’s mid-week mind. And this music is the strong and gentle breath it needs.

Please press the play button below and enjoy…

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  1. oly says

    i’m feeling the same chaos inside of me these days as well. wonder how long will it take to turn them into energy to create to make to really do things. but i guess i just think too much as usual. maybe i’m already doing something even though i haven’t realized.


    August 19th, 2009 | #

  2. Michelle says

    I feel like incessant to-dos are the story of my life. But it has to be that way – If we always did everything there was to do, what else could we dream of doing? A lot of us are living our dreams.

    The music was definitely a gun start to my morning. 🙂 Thank you.

    August 19th, 2009 | #

  3. Paris Parfait says

    That IS one of the more beautiful samples of music escaping from the metro tunnels these days. As for the chaos – must be an epidemic! I’m feeling it too. xo

    August 19th, 2009 | #

  4. pia says

    Tara – it is so hot here, I cannot even imagine what it must be like in Paris right now. You must be sweltering. I hope you are surviving!

    Michelle – I’m glad you enjoyed it. It is more ferocious and loud in the actual metro, this is the tame version for the sake of our ears. But I do love how it always jolts me back into the present.

    oly – yes I think it is all part of the process and journey. Even though it seems like wasted/chaotic times, it must be there for a reason. Enjoy the rest of your week!


    August 19th, 2009 | #

  5. suzi says

    Thanks for the music, it takes me straight back to the summer hols I’ve just had in Europe, and reminds me of a beautiful harpist playing in a London tube station. Is that tinkling the sound of coins dropping? How wonderful to be able to play an instrument that lightens people’s day, what a gift! Thanks, my mind is clear.

    August 20th, 2009 | #

  6. Aran says

    oh pia… thank you for this. it reminded me to stop and listen sometimes. beautiful!

    August 20th, 2009 | #

  7. Andi says

    Must be in the air, this chaos, as I’m feeling it and a lot of other people I know are feeling it too.

    What a BEAUTIFUL soundscape. Makes me miss taking the train in NYC now. I used to hear all sorts of amazing musicians there.

    August 20th, 2009 | #

  8. Sonndapond says

    Pia, this perfectly captures the shuttling we do between our inner and outer experiences of life. And the power of a vivid sight, smell, taste, sound or feel to jerk us, sometimes quite violently, out of inner reverie and back into the present. The absolute stillness of those moments, when our attention shifts from the inside to the outside, and the intensity with which they make us feel alive. I love your writing and visual images; so evocative and transporting; such an inspiration!

    August 21st, 2009 | #

  9. Brittany Noel says

    This was so nice to listen to. I love your sound recordings. truly.

    August 22nd, 2009 | #

  10. josephine says

    this is so lovely! i never tire of these soundscapes.

    August 24th, 2009 | #

  11. Heidi says

    Pia, I was absolutely drawn in by your words and this sound scape. I can almost imagine you walking from one end to the other. It is amazing how we can find inspiration at every corner.

    August 26th, 2009 | #

  12. MichelleP says

    When I am feeling extra stressed, I find a 5 minute dance break can make a world of difference! I adore your soundscapes, I feel like I am magically transported to Paris or Amsterdam…. if only for a moment.

    August 28th, 2009 | #

  13. kathrin says

    wow my gosh your website and especially this post is absolutely wonderful! stunning! well i love paris and i’m thinking about living there soon… thank you for your website, i’m totally inspired!! i’m now a fan of you on facebook 🙂
    Let’s write some more posts and take beautiful pictures…love kathrin

    January 3rd, 2010 | #

  14. Marie says

    Amazing creative web experience! Thank you for this peaceful moment.

    August 2nd, 2010 | #

  15. sebastiaan harm says

    This is just amazing! I was listing to the sample, and than start reading the text, it haves a where special feel.
    Where surprising to read that it is not edited, it looks like to different sound tracks, from where different location.
    fascinating, gives a little magic to the world

    August 27th, 2010 | #

  16. Regina Burbach says

    Hi, Pia,
    I’m Regina (Gina) from Bremen, Germany. I came to know about your blog through Emily Vanessa’s “Berlincheesecake”-blog, now “Coffee and Pie”. I love your soundscapes. The sounds you recorded and your words make me feel aware of the beauty of every day life. As you love Paris so much, you might like to listen to “Soundlandscapesblog”, founded by Des Column, here is the link: http://soundlandscapes.wordpress.com/ Des’ sound blog is all about Paris. May be you like it.
    And: Yes, I agree, Pia, there is certainly “something special about looking at still images und listening to sound.”
    Thanks for sharing your wonderful blog!
    Regina (making sound stories)

    April 19th, 2012 | #

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