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History of Street Music
Transcript of History of Street Music
How street music and the art of busking began.
Who are famous buskers in American history.
How people view these performers in today's society.
How street music stands out from all other buskers.
How these people live their lives.
1. How it all began.
2. Who started as a busker.
5. The living conditions of street musicians.
3. How society portrays buskers.
4. How street musicians stand out from other buskers.
What is "Busking"
To play music or perform entertainment in a public place, usually while soliciting money.
Busking usually takes place in large cities or highly populated areas on busy street corners or near public transportation.
Buskers are not always homeless, it is simply a way for a person to make an income.
B. B. King
Blue Man Group
Cirque du Soleil
Simon and Garfunkel
Buskers have been around for as long as anyone can remember and as long as there are records. Whether it was a barrel organ, music box, or any instrument, people found a way to entertain on the street in ancient history. Getting to American history, we had more variety in what you could do in terms of busking once America actually became a country. There have always been different forms of busking such as acting, singing, painting, circus acts, and much more. Busking is extremely diverse in terms of how many different things you can do on a street corner for money. It has only evolved since then to the people you see today, most of them musicians, performing for the public.
Most of society today views buskers as bums, hobos, druggies, and people who you shouldn't associate yourself with. There are probably some out there like that but people tend to put buskers in the same stereotype as homeless people. They are out walking and when they see someone on the street, they make so many assumptions just because they have a can full of money on the street. The truth is that many of these people have homes, families, and many luxuries of living that you and I have. The likely story is that this person doesn't have an actual job at some company so this is their form of income. Some people might even have a full time or part time job but they busk to make extra cash or because performing is something they love to do. Buskers are just people like you and me, so appreciate the music they play next time you see one, don't give money for pity, they don't need it.
Not every busker in the world is homeless. In fact, most have a comfortable home, some friends, and probably some sort of family. The only difference between this person and an average working American, is the job. Buskers have jobs and they get money, it just so happens that their job is what they love most and they don't have to show up on time to work, unless there is competition for that street corner.
The most common type of busker you will see is a street musician. Music is something that anyone can connect to because there is music everywhere about everything today and it is such a vital part of our society. People love music and will give money to a musician on the street. Also, with other busking acts, you will usually be limited to one or two things you can do within that act and everyone has to do the same one or two things. With street musicians, there is so much variety in genre and musical instrument. You could play guitar and sing, or bring an entire polka band out to the street to make some money. There is so much variety and that is really what sets street musicians apart from other buskers.
As you can see, busking is a very common job around the world and the people who do it are not much different than you and me. Also, musicians are very different than any other street performers because of the variety available in their performance. So busking is just an occupation and some people who do it are good enough to be famous, yet the had a bad turn of events and lost their job and may even be homeless now. This is similar to the case of Dred Scott, a citizen of Denver who was fortunate enough to catch the attention of the local musician Tyler Ward who recorded Dred Scott on the streets singing one song and came up with $2,000 from iTunes sales in the first two days. So appreciate the art and don't give money because you feel like you are supposed to or you need to, give money to those buskers who deserve it and you will realize that most of them do deserve it, once you stop and listen.
One day, professional violinist, Joshua Bell took to the streets in disguise to busk in an experiment set up by The Washington Post. He sat in Washington D.C. for 45 minutes playing music. Of the 1,097 people who passed him, only one recognized who he was and only a few more stopped to listen. Besides the $20 from the man who recognized him, Joshua only made $32.17. The violin he was playing on was worth close to $2,000,000.