Tuesday, January 10, 2012

You Little Ol' Busker, You

I came across a "new" word the other day: busking.

According to Wikipedia:
"Street performance or busking is the practice of performing in public places, for gratuities, which are generally in the form of money and edibles. People engaging in this practice are called street performers, buskers, street musicians, minstrels, or troubadours."
From the root word, buscar, meaning "to seek":
"Up until the 20th century buskers were commonly called minstrels in America, Europe and other English-speaking lands...The word "busk" comes from the Spanish root word "buscar", meaning "to seek" – buskers are literally seeking fame and fortune..."
And more from Wiki:
Folk music has always been an important part of the busking scene. Cafe, restaurant, bar and pub busking is a mainstay of this art form. Two of the more famous folk singers are Woody Guthrie and Joan Baez.
The delta bluesmen were mostly itinerant musicians emanating from the Mississippi Delta region of the USA around the early 1940s and on. B.B. King is one famous example who came from these roots.
Now there's Cyber Busking:
"In the first decade of the 21st century, some performers have begun "Cyber Busking". Artists post work or performances on the Internet for people to download or "stream" and if people like it they make a donation using PayPal."

Happy Busking, Olivia J. Herrell

And for my fellow blues and guitar lovers, here's a priceless video of the late, great Gary Moore and BB King swapping licks like, well, go see for yourself.


Yvonne Osborne said...

I always love a new word, and this one is sure new to me. Love BB King.

Arlee Bird said...

As one who grew up in the entertainment field I have long been familiar with the term. Though I have considered doing it, I have never tried.

I recall back in the 1980s when my father became fascinated with busking and talked about doing it. I never saw him do it, but I believe he actually tried it a few times out of curiosity. Of course, he didn't need to since he had a regular day job and he worked stead juggling gigs through legitimate venues. He was a ham though and I think the idea just appealed to him.

Plenty of busking can be seen around the L.A. area. Just this afternoon I saw a guy across the street from where I live playing the saxophone in front of McDonald's. I assume he must make a few bucks since I've seen him there often.

Hmmm--maybe it's time for me to break out my juggling props or my violin.

What is dynamic flow?
Tossing It Out

Michelle said...

NYC has plenty of buskers. My favorite is the 'Saw Lady', who can be seen playing the musical saw in the NYC subway in this video: http://youtu.be/lPvTTc7jAVQ
According to her busking blog SubwayMusicBlog.com 'busker' is the preferred term by buskers themselves.

Olivia J. Herrell, writing as O.J. Barré said...

Yvonne, isn't this a great one?

Arlee, hey there! Great to see you, Happy New Year! How exciting, let us know how that goes for you.

Michelle, thank you for that confirmation. I'll check her out!

~ Olivia

Jase said...

I've nominated you for the versatile blogger award. Stop by my blog to check out the details! http://jaser75.blogspot.com/

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