Related grooviness

Monday, 14 July 2008


I posted a lens over on SQUIDOO on busking.... tips, etiquette etc...

Here are some suggestions that I've accumulated in my busking experiences. Additions and contradictions welcome. For what it's worth, my act is to stand there playing fiddle tunes - I don't bottle (directly solicit tips) or do banter, and somebody with a more "show business" kind of act might need to do some things differently.


1. Pick a spot where you're visible from as many directions as possible. People need time to recognize what you're doing, decide to give you a tip, and find it in their pockets. If they can see you for a minute before they're actually in front of you, they're a lot more likely to give you a tip then if they suddenly come upon you hidden in a doorway and only have seconds to react.

2. Be very considerate about where you set up, so that you avoid confrontation and avoid annoying the passersby. Be sure that you are not blocking smooth traffic flow into any store, and be sure that you're not making it difficult for wheelchairs or baby strollers to pass or get onto the curb. Also, avoid captive audiences (i.e., playing right beside a restaurant with outdoor seating).

3. One exception to what I just said about captive audiences is traffic lights - choosing intersections that have traffic lights is good, because being a briefly captive audience gives them the time they need to decide to give you a tip.