Anyone else notice the passing of David McGee, who so often played in the skyway between the parking ramps and the Target Center? I also remember him on corners at the Minneapolis Farmer's Market, and apparently he was a regular at other big public places.
Never saw "The Soloist," but apparently the filmmakers noticed him and promoted their movie a bit with his story.
An interesting life that intersected briefly with many of ours, I bet.
MNTV 2009 | Street Cellist: David McGee (via tptweb)
David (Milton) McGee
McGee, David (Milton) Cellist and popular Minneapolis street musician, passed away peacefully in his sleep in June at age 53. Born in St. Paul, his family moved to Rochester, MN in 1967, where he graduated from Rochester Mayo High School in 1976. McGee debuted as a solo cellist with the Rochester Symphony Orchestra, at age 18. He earned a bachelor's degree in Philosophy from Carleton College. McGee pursued his dream of becoming a professional cellist by playing with local orchestras in the 80's, including the St. Paul Jewish Community Center Orchestra and the Mississippi Valley Chamber Orchestra.
McGee was best known around the Twin Cities, however, as a street cellist, playing at popular venues such as, the Minnesota State Fair, Metrodome, Target Center, Minneapolis skyways, and the Minneapolis Farmers Market. Because of similarities between McGee and the main character in the film "The Soloist', the story of black cellist Nathaniel Ayers, (portrayed by Jamie Foxx), McGee was featured in a promotional film highlighting his work at the Farmers Market. McGee was a dedicated cello teacher, member of the Twin Cities Buddhist community, visual artist, and longtime affiliate of the Minnesota Orchestra. He is survived by sister, Carol McGee Johnson of Minneapolis, brother, Jonathan McGee of Southborough, MA, sister-in-law, Rose McGee, of Golden Valley, and many beloved nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles and cousins. He was preceded in death by his mother and father, Earl and Anna McGee, and his brother, William E. McGee. A memorial service will be held for McGee on Thursday, July 14, 2011, at 7:00 p.m., at SGI-USA Buddhist Community Center, 1381 Eustis St., St. Paul, MN 55108.