November 28, 2017

NYC Vintage Train Underground Swing & Jazz Festival, 12/3

Queen Esther

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Tags: jazz jeff mclaughlin MTA music festival NYC queen esther swing Vintage trains

It’s time for Vintage Train Day 2017!!!

The FREE 2017 Vintage Train Jazz and Swing Festival will be held on the north end of the 96th St. Q Station Sunday Dec. 3, 11am-6pm. (Yes, the location is new!)
Band schedule will be announced a few days in advance.
This invite will be continually updated with more information (here and in discussion posts) right up to the date and during the event.

Note: This is a totally unofficial event, completely separate from the official New York Transit Museum’s “Subway Swing” party Dec. 9. Tickets on sale 11/29. Details:

Sunday, Dec. 3, hundreds of jazz musicians, swing dancers, vintage clothing enthusiasts, photographers (plus families, commuters, and subway/railroad buffs) will converge on the 96th St. Q train station for a full day of music, dance, and happiness — totally FREE with your Metrocard swipe. Top-quality established AND up-and-coming jazz bands will perform throughout the day.

This volunteer-driven grassroots gathering is one of the absolute highlights of the winter season for a certain subculture of jazz and vintage lifestyle fans — and the general public is welcome!

Please RSVP so we have an idea how many guests we should prepare for, thank you!

Journalists, bloggers, photogs, documentarians, etc. are absolutely welcome to come and cover the event! We just ask that everyone please share or post your reports/posts/broadcasts here or online with the hashtag #NYCVINTAGETRAIN2017 so we can enjoy them later. Post any query here or on the NYC Vintage Train page.

Look for a post a few days ahead of the date with the complete schedule. We will present *14* excellent early/midcentury-style jazz bands, both in the station and riding the Train, from 11am – 6pm.

These great bands are willing to play solely for tips, so please do tip each and every band! The event is free, and run entirely by volunteers, but these professional musicians are working for their living. We recommend you bring a stack of small bills. :) Giving $2-5 per band, per set is a nice start! Please be generous to all our bands over the course of the day. Buy their CDs! Don’t wait for the hat-passer to come to you; step up. Tips accepted on the Platform and on the Train. Thank you in advance for your generosity!

The Train will start and end its journeys at the 2nd Ave. F stop Uptown platform — but the festival will be based at the north end of the 96th St. Q stop, where the Train turns around. It’s about a 30-minute ride between these two points. All the bands we’re organizing will be playing in the 96th St. station, at its north end.
The Train will be traveling between 2nd Ave. F stop and 96th St. (changing at 63rd/Lexington F/Q stop), so you can join the party anytime, anywhere along the route.
In other words: Route is on the F line from 2nd Ave to 63rd/Lex; Q line between 63rd/Lex and 96th St. in both directions, making all local stops.
But anyone is welcome to come to the festival from anywhere in the system… Vintage Train ride not required!

Train departs 2nd Ave. F station Uptown platform at 10am, noon, 2pm, 4pm. (Returns to 2nd Ave approximately 5:30pm only to discharge passengers before returning to garage.) You can view and photograph the Train for approximately 15 minutes before each scheduled departure.
Train departs 96th Ave. Q station (single platform) at 11am, 1pm, 3pm, 5pm. (5pm trip is *one-way* to drop off passengers at 2nd Ave and will not return.) There will be only very short pauses in this station so as to minimally interfere with normal Q service.
It’s about a 30-minute ride between these two points.

We do expect a large crowd. Please watch out for others while photographing, dancing or getting close to the stairways or edges of the platform as this is a fully operational station.

This is a participatory public happening! Dress in vintage if you’ve got it. We recommend matching the period of the cars: 1920s to 1960s. Or be creative and mix it up, share your own style or interpret the swing era and midcentury fashion. But if you’re not a clotheshorse, we still invite you to please come and enjoy the music.

We cannot make any guarantee about security. The platform is a totally public space, so be street-savvy. If you don’t bring it, no one can mess with it!!

Please share here, and tag all photos and videos you post online (Twitter, Instagram, Flickr, Youtube, Vimeo, etc.) with #NYCVINTAGETRAIN2017, so we can all enjoy them! Volunteers also will have small flyers with this information.


NYC Vintage Train Page

Official news release regarding 2017 holiday season appearances by MTA’s historic trains and buses:

New York Transit Museum’s “Subway Swing” party, to be held Saturday, Dec. 9. Tickets go on sale Nov. 29.

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