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Marion 23 Jun 99 - 12:15 PM
Wolfgang 23 Jun 99 - 12:23 PM
Rick ( 23 Jun 99 - 03:41 PM
Steve Latimer 23 Jun 99 - 04:00 PM
Rick Fielding 23 Jun 99 - 05:44 PM
BeesWing-a proud mama 23 Jun 99 - 05:46 PM
reggie miles 24 Jun 99 - 02:25 AM
Fadac 24 Jun 99 - 11:41 AM
danl 24 Jun 99 - 02:41 PM
GUEST,GMan 27 Jun 04 - 10:04 PM
Bert 27 Jun 04 - 10:23 PM
Deckman 27 Jun 04 - 10:27 PM
GUEST 27 Jun 04 - 10:29 PM
Deckman 27 Jun 04 - 10:42 PM
GUEST,Gman 27 Jun 04 - 11:10 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 28 Jun 04 - 05:37 AM
JennyO 28 Jun 04 - 07:28 AM
GUEST,Geoff Lawes 28 Jun 04 - 08:02 AM
Joybell 28 Jun 04 - 08:15 PM
Stilly River Sage 29 Jun 04 - 01:14 AM
GUEST,Students in B.E.L.S. 12 May 09 - 08:23 PM
InOBU 13 May 09 - 04:45 PM
alanabit 14 May 09 - 07:31 AM
fretless 14 May 09 - 09:48 AM
GUEST 10 Nov 09 - 12:29 PM
breezy 10 Nov 09 - 02:29 PM
GUEST,Farro 14 Nov 09 - 02:53 PM
goatfell 15 Nov 09 - 09:39 AM
meself 15 Nov 09 - 10:59 AM
csaintg 20 Feb 10 - 04:57 AM
GUEST,santa 25 Mar 12 - 05:41 PM
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Subject: Busking
From: Marion
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 12:15 PM

Has anyone here done any busking? Want to tell us how it went, or offer any advice?

I've never busked deliberately, but occasionally I play in public spaces (just to pass the time while waiting for someone, for example) and I've had people come give me money. (A nickel for my guitar-playing, and a quarter for my pennywhistling is my profit so far... these instruments will be paying for themselves in no time, eh?)

But the best "tip" I ever got was when I was practicing my fiddle outdoors and somebody asked me if I was a professional - and this was five months after I first touched a fiddle. It's really that true that if you don't know anything about a certain art, you're just as impressed by a novice as by a virtuoso.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Wolfgang
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 12:23 PM

look here for old thread on that subject


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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Rick (
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 03:41 PM

I started busking last year as a way to ease back into performing in public. It's ideal for this, as there are no commitments, no schedules and no particular expectations on anyones part. I try to seek out high pedestrian traffic areas while avoiding street noise from vehicles. In other words, a busy Bus stop is probably NOT the best place. I have a pretty loud "semi-tenor" voice and do without any amplification. I just walk to my spot, throw an old fedora on the ground and weight it down with a handful of coins so it won't blow away.

Oddly, when I actually started getting paid gigs I found that my street experience had wiped out any trace of stage fright... I recommend busking both for that effect and as a worthy tradition that deserves to be encouraged and continued. The more people do it, the harder it is for the authorities to act like it's something "strange, disruptive and unusual" and hassle performers.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Steve Latimer
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 04:00 PM

Long John Baldry did a neat song about getting busted for Busking on Carnaby St. It's basically a rather humourous narrative about being arrested and going to court and having to explain "Boojie Woojie Music" to the judge. The end turns into a pretty hard rock tune though. I can't remember the title, but I believe it may be "Don't Try To Lay No Boogie Woogie On The King OF Rock And Roll"

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 05:44 PM

Many years ago while busking in Amsterdam I made about 100 dollars, collected about 20 joints, and got (shall we say) a date with a lovely local girl. All in one afternoon! Those were the days my friend!

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: BeesWing-a proud mama
Date: 23 Jun 99 - 05:46 PM

My daughter, 10 years old, plays cello. This shall be her 3rd summer busking at the village square. Motivated by last season's record breaking sum of $18.00 (Canadian, yes!) for 1 hour of her time,this year, she has managed to hook up with another 10 year old who sings and plays guitar and is just as interested in cold cash as she. Location is surperb with heavy pedestrian / cyclist traffic centered around a restored, lakeside trainstation turned Art Gallery... I can't really describe how it feels to be in the garden at home on a Saturday afternoon and hear the notes from her cello soar their way through this town... She always makes me promise NOT to show up on site as a I linger in the foxglove and listen a litle longer to the finish and the applause.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: reggie miles
Date: 24 Jun 99 - 02:25 AM

I just spent the day busking at the Pike Place Market in Seattle. It turned out to be quite a good day for a Wednesday. I got in three one hour sets on my razor sharp handtool (my musical saw). I really get a kick out of playing it and exposing others to it. I spent two days of the recent Memorial Day weekend and two days last weekend, at a local street fair in the Freemont district of Seattle, doing the same and all things considered had a great time. I played some guitar last weekend as well, (my homemade rezophonic Nobro bottleneck guitar), and I was surprised at the response I got. Guitar players seem to dominate the scene so anything one can do to stand out helps, my Nobro and saw work well at this. Of course standing out in a crowd is just one aspect of success at this. A strong presentation is another. Presenting yourself well and communicating with those who may stop and gather before you are two more points that should be emphasised. Here again my Nobro and saw create immediate subjects upon which to expound, to say nothing of my 1929 Maytag Eldorado Rhythm Board. Talking about the instruments I have created and the obscure music I play and those who authored it are all things I enjoy and employ in my performances. Then just having fun with creating wild, crazy or weird intros and stories, and finding strange, bent material to play is another good way to gather some listeners. Watch other buskers who seem to have a successful show together and steal, (okay, borrow), some of their lines, practice them, make them your own, as you would a song you enjoy playing. Do these things, keep a positive mental attitude, learn some silly jokes, give of yourself, from your heart not just your hands and voice and you'll be surprised at what chords you'll be able to strike in the hearts of those around you and the rewards you'll reap will be far greater than any cash you may receive. (Cue organ music and choir.) And now brothers and sisters we'll be passin' the collection plate. Please give to help fund my vasectomy operation. You can help keep future generations of people like me from repopulating the streets of (Insert your towns name here)!

Reggie, I gotta get a vasectomy, Miles

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Fadac
Date: 24 Jun 99 - 11:41 AM

I never tried to go out and squeeze for money. However I used to practice while waiting for my wife to come and pickk me up after work. One day I was working on "Star of County Down" when someone slipped a $1.00 in my concertina case. Gosh, I thanked the guy. I still have the dollar in my case. :o) Someone also gave me a penny and a quarter. There still in the case too.

You know, I think that the little bit of money, has brought me luck. I won't spend it.


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Subject: RE: Busking
From: danl
Date: 24 Jun 99 - 02:41 PM

my sister and her collegues at work used to have a guy in a kilt play the bagpipes under the window of thier office everyday through an entire winter. at christmas they took him down some christmas cake and told him how they had heard him every day and then begged him to play some new tunes becuase they were being driven nuts by him playing the same ones over and over and over and over......

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: GUEST,GMan
Date: 27 Jun 04 - 10:04 PM

Question for you - How does busking contribute to the improvement (i.e function and safety) of the streetscape?

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Bert
Date: 27 Jun 04 - 10:23 PM

It improves the function by entertaining passers by, and making their journey more pleasant.

And where does safety come into it? Why should it be a buskers job to improve safety?

Of course they do so to a certain extent just by being there, their presence will discourage a minor amount of crime which relies on the absence of witnesses for its perpetration.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Deckman
Date: 27 Jun 04 - 10:27 PM

It also FORCES the cars and general street noise to quiet down so that the busker's music can be enjoyed. Bob

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Subject: RE: Busking
Date: 27 Jun 04 - 10:29 PM

They are NOT licensed

They are NOT certified and legal

They are easy for the authorities to identify and cit....

They make all the local constubalary look legit and regal.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Deckman
Date: 27 Jun 04 - 10:42 PM

"they are not licensed
they are not certified
    they are not legal"

Neither are you when you post as a GUEST and come on this freindly chatline just to raise hell!

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: GUEST,Gman
Date: 27 Jun 04 - 11:10 PM

Thanks for your feedback re 'Question For You'

the reason i ask is because i am doing a Uni assignment on busking.

The questions to answer follow...

1. How does busking contribute to the improvement (i.e function and safety) of the streetscape?

2. How does busking contribute to your shopping experience?

3. When and where would you most likely expect to witness busking?

4. In your opinion what standard of entertainment do buskers provide to the community?

5. How would you feel if Busking was abolished?

6. In your opinion what sort of person would become a street performer?

I must conduct qualitative research (i.e. ask people these sort of questions) to end up with a recommendation for a (hyperthetical) client wishing to become a successful street busker.

If you choose to participate please be aware that answers can be as long or short as you want however honest opinions would be appreciated.

i look forward to reading your opinions.

Hi Gman, I deleted 18 copies of this message and left this one. Please don't post messages multiple times! You could start a new thread to ask (and collect answers to) your questions and discuss them. Thanks, JoeClone

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 05:37 AM

Mr. GMan,

At the top of this thread ... you will notice about thirty more threads all related to busking

Read them all through and you will have quite the authoritative paper and you will also avoid stirring up angry, embittered, souls such as Deckman.


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Subject: RE: Busking
From: JennyO
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 07:28 AM

I don't think GMan was the GUEST that stirred Deckman up. It was the anonymous GUEST from 27 Jun at 10.29pm.

GMan, I will give some thought to your questions and try to offer you some answers later from the perspective of someone who enjoys others busking but hasn't been game to do it herself yet.


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Subject: RE: Busking
From: GUEST,Geoff Lawes
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 08:02 AM

Jim Eldon Has written a great comic song about busking called,I think, "Bar and Dar". He doesn't perform it much but it is on one of his recordings.It's a good'un.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: Joybell
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 08:15 PM

For what it's worth - I was Melbourne's first licenced busker. In the late 1970s I walked into the council offices and asked if they had permits. They didn't so they gave me a typed letter stating that I was allowed to busk in the streets of Melbourne. A year or so later they started giving us all proper cards to pin on our clothes. I dressed as a sort of poor-but-honest flower seller and went out and sang in the very middle of Melbourne's main street. Scary - but once I'd put myself there there was no turning back. I had some wonderful experiences, over about 5 years, and was given several nicknames - "The Angel of Bourke Street", "The Bourke Street Thrush" (not so sure about that one since I'm a nurse). I usually made more money, as a busker - around 10 dollars an hour, on my day off from nursing. It was the fun of it that really attracted me though. The idea that people could stop and listen or ignore me. I feature in lots of tourist photos, I'm sure, posing with people I'll never meet again. Funny, touching and sad things happened. I'll write about it all one day. Joy

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Subject: Obit: Sandi Ingraham Fortune
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Jun 04 - 01:14 AM

A segue because I'm not sure where else to place this--I read an obit today from the Everett Herald in Washington State. One aspect of this woman's life is that she played hammered dulcimer down in Pike Street Market. I don't know her name from my circle, but I wonder if this is a busker from the Market who is someone known to Mudcatters?

This ran in the Monday and I think Saturday online editions. If she's a Mudcatter then this can be moved over into it's own obit thread.

Sandi Ingraham Fortune

Sandi Ingraham Fortune, 55, was escorted into heaven by the angels the morning of June 22, 2004 to meet the Lord.

Her outgoing and encouraging attitude, smile, friendliness, and inquisitive nature will be missed by all who knew her. Sharing their love for each other and music, Sandi and Abel, her husband of 26 years, played folk music together at the Pike Place Market, area festivals and recorded their own album. Known as an excellent player of the hammer dulcimer, Sandi also mastered the Irish drum and limberjack, professional quality instruments made by Abel.

Sandi's close relationship with her parents, Glenn and Elaine, remained in adulthood. They traveled throughout the country, including Hawaii, Mt. Rushmore, and California. Together they rejoiced in Sandi's baptism in the Jordan River, Israel. Sandi enjoyed motorhome trips to visit her daughter Wendy's family in Nebraska and celebrate the birth of her grandchildren.

Born in Seattle in 1949, Sandi graduated from Meadowdale High in 1967. She volunteered at the Little Red Schoolhouse, Martha Lake Community Covenant Church, the Seattle Mobile Blood Bank, and worked occasionally at Glenn's Welding.

Sandi is survived by: her husband, Abel Fortune; daughter Wendy (Jay) McKenny and four grandchildren; parents, Glenn and Elaine Ingraham; brothers Larry (Audrey) Ingraham, Dale Ingraham, Mark (Tamra) Ingraham; cousin Paul (Cherie) Anderson; mother-in-law Lona Rollins; sister-in-law Lois McClellan; and many nieces and nephews.

The family thanks her friends, Joan Mitchell, Jeanette Petosa, GHC Hospice, and the staff at Aldercrest Care Center in Lynnwood for their TLC and friendship, especially during the past year.

Memorial funds may be sent to International Chaplains Ministry, PO Box 476, Edmonds, WA 98020; or ALS-Muscular Dystrophy Assoc., 701 Dexter Ave. N., Seattle, WA 98109.

A Memorial Service will be held at Alderwood Community Church, on Tuesday, June 29th at 11:00am.


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Subject: I want to interview a busker.
From: GUEST,Students in B.E.L.S.
Date: 12 May 09 - 08:23 PM

I am a student from Blackburn English Language School in Melbourne. I am doing a special project about busking, I want to interview a person who knows busking a lot.
If you have time please contact me before Friday,22nd May. The interview will last about 15-20 minutes.
My e-mail is
Thank you very much:).

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: InOBU
Date: 13 May 09 - 04:45 PM

I'll drop you a note about busking in New York, Ireland and Canada, if you are interested... never busked in Austrailia...

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: alanabit
Date: 14 May 09 - 07:31 AM

I could write books about the subject... You can e-mail me at   InObu is one of our treasures here, who will be able to give you plenty of stuff. So will Steve Lee Rich, if you PM him. There are some other buskers here...Jim, forgotten, his second name... and Marion. At any rate, keep this thread up and check the other busking threads here. You should get plenty of response.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: fretless
Date: 14 May 09 - 09:48 AM

Lots of us have busked in one place or another, for basic sustinence, as a source of supplemental income, or just for the fun of engaging with an unpredictable audience. But I'm thousands of miles away from Melbourne, and if you're looking for a single interview with one person, you're probably hoping for someone closer to home.

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Subject: RE: Busking
Date: 10 Nov 09 - 12:29 PM

im 13 years oldand i went busking last year for the experience just me and my guitar and i really enjoyed it

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: breezy
Date: 10 Nov 09 - 02:29 PM

Dont you just hate it when kids are sent into the street and exploited.

They'll be sending them up chimneys next.

take great care

and Good luck

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: GUEST,Farro
Date: 14 Nov 09 - 02:53 PM

I have been busking for about 10 yeas now. Started in Winnipeg Canada. I had a career, making good money until one day i decided to busk outside of a liquor store. I made 450 bucks. What a day. I quit my job after that and started travelling and busking full time. I know alot of good and bad places to play.
For the last year I have been going around Europe. Germany is my favorite place although alot of towns and cities you need a permit. I actually had my guitar confiscated by the cops in Bernkastel-kues because I didnt have a permit or the 20 euros for the fine. (i had 19 euros. they wouldnt accept that and even 2 different guys who were listening offered to pay but the cop said no.)
I have been in Prague for a month now. Absolutely the WORST place. It is illegal to busk, you need to go through 5 different offices to finally get a permit which costs about 2000 Czech crowns (about 80 euros) AND chances are they dont speak any english. also, its a poor place. lots of foolish tourists, sure, but also WAY too many homeless and drug dealers and neo-nazis. Its funny how I cant even finish tuning my guitar outside before a cop or security starts babbling to me in Czech to get lost. But they dont really care about the drug dealers. If you plan to go to Prague and busk, change your plans. I tried everything.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: goatfell
Date: 15 Nov 09 - 09:39 AM

why are people still using the name guest on this site, why don't they use a name of some kind, what are the frightend of

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: meself
Date: 15 Nov 09 - 10:59 AM

I've learned to be discreet about advertising any particular success I've had busking. The surest way to lose a good spot is to let it slip that you made a lot of money there, tempting as it may be to boast or share your joy. Sure as [insert appropriate image], next time you show up to busk there, you will find someone already ensconced in 'your' spot. And it may be someone who never busked before, but when they heard how much money you made, decided to give it a go - in the spot that you were so pleased with.

I never tell anyone how much I make or don't make busking. If you tell them you make a small amount, they look at you with contempt; if you tell them you make what might seem a worthwhile amount, they or one of acquaintances starts competing with you - and any given city is only going to support so many buskers.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: csaintg
Date: 20 Feb 10 - 04:57 AM

I just recently learned the term "busking", although it turns out I've been doing it most of my life. When I was in third grade, I would go to Lythia Park in Ashland Oregon, and practice my trumpet. Later when I gaduated to guitar, the park just seemed like a natural place to practice. My friend and I took our guitars down to the subway in Naples Italy. I've played in Korea, Virginia, and just about everywhere I have ever been, and I have always drawn a crowd. I never considered doing it for a living, until now. I am considering retiring, buying a sailboat, and sailing around the world, busking for extra cash! I live in Washington now, and made a trip to the Pike Market to see the buskers there. What a kick! I can't wait to get involved. I think we need to raise busker awareness in musicians and non-musicians alike, and let the world know that there is a talent pool of fresh ideas as close as the local park.

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Subject: RE: Busking
From: GUEST,santa
Date: 25 Mar 12 - 05:41 PM

i did two hours of busking two different days for sixty dollars an hour til the cops ran me off for lack of a permit the city has issued me a peddlers permit as the first busker in gulfport missiossippi

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