I can't seem to stop singing wherever I am.
March 12, 2010 11:58 PM   Subscribe

Music should be experienced first-hand and without instruments. Where in New York City can I go and participate in music? Choral groups, drum circles, singing circles - where do I find them?

Were do I find a musical experiences that are a) communal and b) focused on the experience of music rather than the technical aspects of making it. Here are some examples of what I'm talking about.

- Glory - Movie 1989 - Soldiers Sing on Night Before Assault
- Kristin Linklater (click on the Video examples)
- Perpetuum Jazzile - Toto's Africa
- Bobby McFerrin hacks your brain with the pentatonic scale
- Bobby McFerrin on The Sing-Off

Dance classes are almost always community activities - why not music classes? I know there's a drum circle on weekend nights in Central Park (sometime with brass band accompaniment) what else is there?
posted by MesoFilter to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (10 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Macus Garvey Park Drum Circle
Fort Tryon Park Dominican Drum Circle (Saturday nights, mostly, in the summer)

In the summer, Governor's Island will host a number of music events, some of which will feature or include non-instrumental music and dance forms.

Here's a list & descriptions of some NYC acapella groups, for your listening pleasure.
posted by paulsc at 2:31 AM on March 13, 2010

Find a Pete Seeger concert.
posted by thejoshu at 6:23 AM on March 13, 2010

I'd be surprised if you visited the Big Apple Chorus and weren't invited to participate.
posted by Balonious Assault at 8:16 AM on March 13, 2010

Look for Sacred Harp or, more broadly, shape note singing.
posted by Madamina at 8:23 AM on March 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I would second Madamina and highly highly recommend a Sacred Harp group. Don't be put off by the religious themes, it's a totally secular activity filled with friendly geeky people, especially in Manhattan. For me, it gives me that effervescent Durkheimian Dyonisian feeling that I think a lot of people get out of drum circles. Here is my first attempt at MeFi html:


I can even give you some names of people to look out for if you'd like to MeMail me.
posted by Polyhymnia at 8:42 AM on March 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Came in to recommend Sacred Harp.
posted by ottereroticist at 8:50 AM on March 13, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Open Music Circle
Lower East Side Community Choir
I haven't been to either yet, but I've been meaning to go!
posted by moonmilk at 9:09 AM on March 13, 2010

Best answer: Thanks! Amazing resources guys.

I'd also like to add Marie's Crisis, where you get to get drunk & sing show tunes all night long (too bad I don't really know any show tunes) and this directory of drum circles.
posted by MesoFilter at 9:58 AM on March 13, 2010

The Contemporary A Cappella League
posted by FlyByDay at 8:43 PM on March 14, 2010

Response by poster: Thanks again for all of these - I've marked-as-best the ones with specific recommendations to places that were open to all.
posted by MesoFilter at 8:33 PM on March 19, 2010

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