Videos: Neighbors Sing Songs to Each Other from Their Windows in Nightly Ritual

A lovely new ritual has begun at one Upper West Side building courtyard.

Gretchen Connelie, who lives on 111th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue, sent the videos below of her and her neighbors singing amid the “social distancing” now forcing Upper West Siders to maintain physical distance from each other. A similar ritual has also occurred in other countries like Italy now under lockdown conditions due to the virus.

“That view is from my couch and it’s usually just a bunch of dark windows.  I had the TV on so didn’t hear anything at first but saw the lights on and then realized what was happening.  The woman with the guitar and the other gentleman in the adjoining apartment appear to have planned it. Others joined in above and below but i couldn’t get them on video.  There was even a violin and a horn at some point.

After a few songs, we started chatting, asking if everyone is okay or if people need anything.  I’m younger than most of them and can still get to the store. Everyone was doing great and in fine spirits. I’m excited for this to keep going and especially now that all of my work has disappeared (I’m a freelancer), I’m happy to have something on my schedule to look forward to.”

Are you seeing other displays of solidarity? Email us at westsiderag at gmail!

NEWS | 17 comments | permalink
    1. Chase says:

      that 10 seconds was terrible…. that’s all you have to share? damn

    2. Pedestrian says:

      Humans can be wonderful.

    3. Frank says:

      What? No West Side Story songs?


    4. I remember mama says:

      Back in my grandmothers days that’s how people would communicate with their neighbors…. Something like… “Hey” or “hello Mrs. Smith, is my son Bobby with your son Ronny, send him home please his dinner is ready“

      Yes we had home phones, but grandmothers didn’t want to spend the money if they could just yell out the back window looking for their kids playing with their neighbor kids.

      • Fay's Son says:

        Re: ” grandmothers … could just yell out the back window looking for their kids … playing with (other) kids.”

        AND, at least according to stories I once heard about The Lower East Side (long before it would become “El Loisaida”), some over-protective grandmothers would yell out the front window (in Yiddish, of course) to warn their precious grandkids playing “in the gutter” that a CAR was approaching!

    5. Heidi Stubner says:

      I just played my violin from my window on Broadway to passers by. Planning on doing it every day. When it warms up will do it from the roof.

    6. Carol says:

      My grandmother lived on 107th and Broadway and this is exactly the same view from her living room window. There were opera singers and musicians galore, she had me listen to them in the summer nights (before air conditioning!) Thanks for the memories, and for this beautiful video

    7. Ruth says:

      Wonderful Idea!!! Keep up the good work!

    8. Arlene Kayatt says:

      Reminded me of early days’ tv’s “Yoo Hoo Mrs. Goldberg,” when Molly spoke to her neighbor through the window.

    9. This is a real throwback. On the television show “The Goldbergs” (the original, which ran from the late ’40s into the ’50s), this is how Molly Goldberg communicated with her neighbors.

    10. Kathleen says:

      New Yorkers at their best!! Thanks for sharing this! I hope everyone is well.

    11. Hannah Sherak says:

      Thank you for posting this.
      Brought sweet tears.

    12. Dexter Muntaner says:

      That’s a lovely video. Keep it up – Upper West Side! One day soon you will look back and have a great story to share . It’s inspiring to create a sliver lining and cope in as a community under siege.
      You rock Upper West side!!!!!

    13. Laura says:

      Tonight at 7:30! Hope you can join!

    14. Joy Weiner says:

      This is beautiful and made me cry! I am living out of the city and getting homesick.