Sminky, the thread is about *remuneration* and folk. In the current world, money is the only way of getting remuneration for work, but it's not the only way. "Paid for" does not automatically mean coins and banknotes. Since you're trying to make an artificial distinction between receiving money in a cash-based society and receiving board/lodging/clothing/instruments in a barter-based society, would you be happier if admission to the next Martin Carthy concert was priced at three chickens and a cow?
But still, the best ones *were* paid, both in kind and in money. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minstrel "Initially, minstrels were simply servants at Court". Servant=paid. "Another type of performers...were the gleemen, who had no settled abode, but roamed about from place to place, earning what they could from their performances." It's only Wikipedia, but I don't see the need to look any further.