After a day of running around downtown working, there's nothing like the sound of a resonating, melodious voice singing where you didn't expect it. On the day we met Phil Young, the weather was typical for Spring Chicago weather - crisp, windy, sunny, and 15 minutes away from a thunderstorm.
After finally taking a sigh of relief, knowing that we were finally heading home and done for the day we walked down into the Grand Red Line Station, and Phil Young was just starting to sing. And once he saw me pointing a camera at him, he just oozed showmanship.
Phil sang his heart out for the few hundred people we saw get on and off the trains that day. And a lot of people were genuinely struck by it. People who were jolted so far out of their way that they took a moment to sing along, to snap their fingers, or bounce to the tune while their going about their busy routines. Phil Young, with his heart of gold, says he is 38 years young. He said that he's been singing for 36 or however many years he could remember. Music is his passion -- he's the kind of guy whose heart beats in rhythm with the music around him.
We asked Phil about his singing, and how he does his job every day. He said that he tries to go to the stops where he'll find a lot of people. He tries to go to the Chicago Red Line stop, State, Lake, or Jackson. If one of his pals are singing or performing at the stop, he'll just go on to the next one. We asked Phil why he sings. He was taken aback! He took a step back and clutched his chest saying, "Why do I sing?! Why do I breathe!?" Apparently, the man loves singing. If you'd like to hear Phil singing, check out the video below!
Phil is inspired by curiousity. By the pleasant smiles he sees, and by people who just appreciate the little things that he finds intriguing. He's aware of the negativity in the world, but he needs to stay focused on the positive.
Regarding his dreams, Phil mentioned two things: health and wealth. He didn't necessarily mean fame and fortune, but instead health so that he could keep on doing what he's doing. With wealth, Phil dreams of not material wealth, but knowledge and wisdom. And then using that wealth of knowledge and wisdom to give back to the world, and make the world a better place. Phil said that he wanted to "make it large" so that he could "give it large."
Thanks, Phil, for all the good tidings you spread in the city.