I went to the up-for-sale strip of former Tin Pan Alley buildings on W. 28th Street late last week to see if any architectural details remain denoting the structures' former functions as hives of musical invention.
Alas, nothing on the facades would give you any hints that the edifices once housed famous music publishing houses which introduced the world to the wonders of Berlin, Warren and Gershwin. The buildings are suitably old and many of the windows have old-style, wooden-framed panes. But there are no initials in any of the cornices that might belong to a formerly famous publisher, no faded, painted advertisements on a side wall.
The oldest-looking part of the buildings are perhaps the enterways at the top of the flights of stairs leading from the sidewalk. None of the addresses up for sale, aside from No. 47, appear to have modernized doorways. Just the old, huge, wooden kind. The paneling, transoms and details seem to be original. One can easily imagine a hungry songwriter passing through these portals a century ago, on his way upstairs to try and sell a new ditty to the big boss.