transit chimes by chord interval
July 28, 2020 2:34 PM   Subscribe

I don't whether it's just nostalgia but I find the TTC chime arpeggio very soothing.
posted by GuyZero at 3:08 PM on July 28, 2020 [3 favorites]

Honestly if you had asked me 20mins ago what the NYC chime is, I wouldn't have been able to describe it (despite hearing it daily or some variation of it for most of my life). Listening to it now, there's something about it that makes it sound SO RIGHT. I'm nostalgic for my pre-covid commute. and I've obviously been brainwashed, god I miss the subway
posted by larthegreat at 3:53 PM on July 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

I once went to Montreal with a woman named Rosalie and since then I cannot not hear the STM chimes saying “Ro-sa-lieeeee.”
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:56 PM on July 28, 2020 [2 favorites]

This Radiolab episode has a mini-story about how the engines of NYC subway cars make a sound as they're speeding up that is also a deliberate interval. (And the reporter wants to investigate whether it intentionally sounds like 'Somewhere' from West Side Story.)
posted by little onion at 4:04 PM on July 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

Obscure Reference: Tokyo train departure melodies.

That was great. I was very happy to hear the Astroboy theme played on the Takadanobaba line/station
posted by Popular Ethics at 4:50 PM on July 28, 2020

Montreal also made their chime sound like the motor starting up on older metro cars. Newer motor controller technology doesn’t need this electrical hack, but they’ve preserved the sound in the door chime.
posted by cardboard at 5:04 PM on July 28, 2020 [2 favorites]

Tokyo train departure melodies.

That first one sounds off, but I checked it out and the pitches are right. It's the bell tone and the lack of reverb that makes it sound wrong.
It's been my phone ringtone for years now
posted by ctmf at 5:36 PM on July 28, 2020

The voice in nyc is the same as when I lived there 10+ years ago. Who is that? I always loved when he would announce 42nd st on the 456 and note the metro north we had won the metro north game show or something...
posted by Tandem Affinity at 7:39 PM on July 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

In São Paulo we got actual saxophone notes on the yellow line!
posted by Tom-B at 8:20 PM on July 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

Having been working from home for several months now, I haven't had a reason to get on a train to go to work (or anywhere, really), so these sounds really bring me back.

Caltrain (between San Jose and San Francisco) has this nice cheery chime followed by a female voice announcement. I've spent years of my life listening to this chime, so when I visited Chicago and took the Metra, which has similar silver tin-can bilevel cars, I was pleasantly surprised on my first ride to hear the familiar "doo-DOOO". I was completely unprepared for their identically-worded version of the door chime to be announced with a male voice.

In the end, it turns out what I really wanted to know more about was the secret lives of train door chime composers and how these ubiquitous sounds are prepared, and I'm glad to see somebody cataloguing them!
posted by Brassica oleracea at 9:31 PM on July 28, 2020

Yesterday I had a long Skype discussion with my 90 year old mother in Israel about a clip I took last week of my train ride in Copenhagen:
The train is electric and automatic, it is quiet, clean and pleasant. There are no driver or conductor and nobody at the stations (except of the bigger ones). Everything is smooth and helpful. There are no turnstiles. People press their card in front of a glass panel walking in and out. The transaction is done online. Also, the rides are cheap, frequent and the trains go everywhere.
The “lady” says “DR-byen”, which is where the TV station is.
posted by growabrain at 10:04 PM on July 28, 2020

The voice in nyc is the same as when I lived there 10+ years ago. Who is that?

That's Charlie Pellet, a radio broadcaster for Bloomberg news. (Born in London, oddly enough, but that's New York for you!)
posted by Jon_Evil at 2:44 AM on July 29, 2020 [4 favorites]

It's been my phone ringtone for years now
posted by ctmf

I've been using these as phone ringtones too.
posted by Obscure Reference at 4:27 AM on July 29, 2020

GuyZero, the TTC chime is the beginning of the Mork and Mindy theme song.
posted by wellred at 5:51 AM on July 29, 2020

Tom-B, that's great!
posted by Foci for Analysis at 6:00 AM on July 29, 2020 [1 favorite]

In related links, the voice of the bullet train shows off to her visiting mum:
posted by reiichiroh at 4:01 PM on July 29, 2020 [1 favorite]

The voice in nyc is the same as when I lived there 10+ years ago.

Ah! But I remember from many years earlier it was the train's human conductor who made the announcements, which meant there was a fair amount of variation. My favorite was on the old original D line (which is now called the B line). There was a guy who'd say: "This is the dynamite D to the Bronx!" before the more rote "Please stand clear of the doors." He was also liked to wish that everyone have a "fantastic" (or sometimes "outstanding") day.

Ah, sometimes I really do miss the 1970s/80s vintage NYC.
posted by Insert Clever Name Here at 5:52 PM on July 29, 2020 [3 favorites]

Depending on the line, NJTransit heavy rail still relies on the conductors to make announcements, so you can get that human touch across the Hudson at least. For example, back when I still commuted through Newark Penn on the regular I distinctly remember a conductor referring to it tongue in cheek (or perhaps not??) as "the jewel of the Passaic".

I do miss New York Penn's old NJT/Amtrak departure stop announcements, which are gone/automated now.
posted by cyrusdogstar at 6:19 PM on July 30, 2020

Insert Clever Name Here, we had a similar conductor on the Pittsburg-Baypoint BART line in the Bay Area. Between Rockridge Station, the last urban station on the Oakland/Berkeley side of the Berkeley hills, and Orinda Station (small super leafy suburban station) he would always belt out "Orinda! Orinda Station! Gateway to suburbia! . . ." He too would wish everyone departing the train a "outstanding" or "fantastic" day.
posted by flamk at 11:41 PM on July 31, 2020 [1 favorite]

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