We Remember The Magic Café We Remember
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » 10 (actually 9) Reasons NOT to Busk Fulltime (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
Stperformer
View Profile
Loyal user
289 Posts

Profile of Stperformer
10 (actually 9) Reasons NOT to busk for a living!

So you wanna be a professional busker,huh?
You watched the howto DVDs, seen buskers on youtube, maybe even caught a live act or two. The freedom, adventure, lifestyle. This is truly what you want.
Well not so fast hombre!
Below are 10 (okay 9) reasons you should not make busking your carrer path.

1. Money, or rather lack of it. Think starving artist. Don't believe me, just do the math.
Busking is not a 9-5 job. The good season is usually 3-4 months and during this time in the evenings and weekends. And most good pitches are swarming with other buskers so your gonna have to wait your turn. And hope it doesn't rain. Travel? Train, planes, hotels will eat up your money so fast that you'll be lucky to break even.

2. Devalued as a Performer

Like it or not, as a busker you're performing for free or at the best for a handout....or at least that's how the general public perceives you. Problem is when you want to work as a hired gig they ask themselves why they would pay you big bucks when people can watch you perform for free on the street.

3. Loans, line of credit, Mortgage

Walk into a bank, ask for a loan and then tell them you make your living performing on the street. They laugh and show you the door so fast..

4. Here Today, Gone tomorrow

Like the wild west, frontier of the past.....the good pitches around the world are disappearing. And the remaining one's are becoming so restrictive and regulated as to be impractible or even impossible to work. Many foreign places require you to be a citzen, before they'll give you a license or audition.

5. Relationships with Signicant Other

Lets face it guys....the busking lifestyle can be very hard on a relationship.

6. Working Conditions

Drunks, thugs, crazies plus heat and cold can make one horid enviroment at times.

7. It's a Young Man's Game

Fine when you are in your 20s....but when you hit 50 it's another matter.

8. Taxes

This is an area NO ONE wants to talk about. But it's a reality. Are you going to claim what you make. Just some? well wait to you get audited and try and explain how you support yourself and where your weekly bank deposits come from. Tax evasion is a serious matter.

9. Job Security

Granted no job with perhaps the except of a doctor has true job security but as a busker you have very very little rights. At the whim of a shopkeeper or gov't you can lose your pitch.
*********

So there you are. Feel a little apprehensive now. If so, then I've done you a service and best look at this as hobby or part-time venture at best.
If however, after reading this you think I should take this article and shove it up my @#%, and regardless of all the negatives you know you must do it because you love the art and its something that's in your blood ..... then perhaps you are a true artist, and will succeed. Because there are so many people out there that don't want you to do just that...whether from jealousy, envy or just plain ignorance.
I know. I am and always will be a Busker Smile))
Eduardo
View Profile
Veteran user
312 Posts

Profile of Eduardo
Wowwwwwww
Mr. Mystoffelees
View Profile
Inner circle
I haven't changed anyone's opinion in
3622 Posts

Profile of Mr. Mystoffelees
Aren't many things one can do that don't have at least 9 reasons not to do them...
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
mmreed
View Profile
Inner circle
Harrisburg, PA
1432 Posts

Profile of mmreed
Someone is trying to thin the herd. LOL.

Yeah, no one get into busking. Its terrible. stay away from pitch spots. Stick to birthday parties.
Mark Reed
Wedding and Event Entertainment
HerbLarry
View Profile
Special user
Poof!
731 Posts

Profile of HerbLarry
Your post must be a joke of sorts. With that I offer my rebuttal:

1. Money/Hours: Just because your perception of busking doesn't include working a full day doesn't mean there aren't those of us that treat it as a real job and make a good living doing it.

2. Devalued as a Performer: Again your perception. That perhaps your performance doesn't command respect is a reflection on your performance.

3. Banking: I have never walked into a bank asking for money, I make my own. I have no doubt my lifestyle is different than yours. I owe no one.

4. Here Today, Gone tomorrow: Says you!

5. Relationships with Significant Other: I have a wonderful relationship with a great lady for 27 years now. I busk she loves it. Don't blame your relationship troubles on anything but you.

6. Working Conditions: That you may choose to work around drunks, thugs, crazies doesn't require I do so. As for weather it's what's outside and that's not a bad thing in my book. Don't like it outside? Work inside.

7. 7. It's a Young Man's Game: I'm 50 though I feel like 20 physically, probably due to my low stress lifestyle and owing no one.


8. Taxes: My taxes are as honest as the next guy. What, again with the banking stuff? Busker doesn't equal tax cheat.

9. Job Security: Here I must break into laughter Smile It is literally impossible for me to lose my job. Doctors get canned for numerous reasons. Very little rights? Ever read the Constitution? Heard of the Bill of Rights? There is one right up near the top, the first one in fact, that speaks (see what I did there?) to your laughable point.
You know why don't act naive.
Mario Morris
View Profile
Inner circle
Mario Morris
2044 Posts

Profile of Mario Morris
I like this artical I don't agree with some finer points but I like it.

The truth is if you have debt up to your ass then BUsking aint going to help.

A succsefull busker will manage them selfs like a business.

you can be a rich earner, say you have 1mill coming in but you have imill going out then basiclly your broke.
Regardless to what you do.

Si hear it is aim to be debt free then busking will work for you.

I got Married last year to Veronica we travel and work together, life is great but dot get me wroung it is tough.

But I owe nothing to no one.

I know of a number of Buskers who have bought a house and so on.

Todd Various just bought his house in Edinburgh, the secound most expensive place to live in the UK after Londone.
Hat off to him.

I know Buskers who have lost every thing.

But I agree with the heart of what you are saying.

It is very tough to make it as a Busker.

Any one who tells yu diffrent is a pulling your leg.
jimmy talksalot
View Profile
Special user
new orleans
757 Posts

Profile of jimmy talksalot
Yep it's about hard work and commitment.

busking is not a get rich quick thing by any stretch.

I think of myself as a full time proffessional magician, not necessarily a busker.

I go where the work is, if theres no work, there's always the street.

I think Stperformer has 9 great EXCUSES not to be full time at a great carreer.

infact I have heard no less than 20 more from guys complaining about their magic carreers and why they could never busk.

but, like mario, I loved this thread. it's cold reality.

owning a business is burtal, and these are the specific hardships to be over come of this business.

I know plenty of buskers with credit, morgages, and loans.

but they are very disciplined and knowledgable about the ways of business.

I hope this thread does thin the herd, and I hope many do give up, because like I have said before,

if you weren't born to do this, I wouldn't wish being an entertainer on my worst enemy.

thanks Stperformer,

and,

thanks HerbLarry,

most of all for your post.

I couldn't agree more.
HerbLarry
View Profile
Special user
Poof!
731 Posts

Profile of HerbLarry
To planning instead of doing:
"You plan and you work and you work and you plan...and still come up 5 feet short of your goal."
Hollis Alexander Figg
You know why don't act naive.
jmhall
View Profile
New user
The Midwest
12 Posts

Profile of jmhall
No profession is perfect. I could probably think of nine negative aspects to my job if I sat around dwelling on it, but I don’t. I do my job because I love doing it. I believe the salient point to this thread is that if a person thinks making a living busking is going to be an easy alternative to a “real job,” then they are setting themselves up for failure. If they are trying to busk because they love what they do and are willing to give what it takes, then perhaps they can be successful.
Sir Richard
View Profile
Special user
650 Posts

Profile of Sir Richard
I find Stpertormer's post interesting. I've been an Insurance Agent, A Car Salesman, & wanted, at one time, to be a lawyer; I think that being a busker would be a step up! Smile
"In the land of Murphy there is but ONE law!"
Stperformer
View Profile
Loyal user
289 Posts

Profile of Stperformer
Zowie!

Some great quality responses here.

While I intended the original post partially in jest.....there is a grain of true to each and every one.
As Herblarry pointed out, each point can have a rebutal but in the same token they do need to be addressed.

For example in Taxes, I'm not saying we're cheats (though I'll admit there is no bloody way I claim every Euro/dollar/Quid).
However you must eventually learn to run your busking like a business and keep every single receipt, know your write offs, get professional advice....and when it's all done you'll end up paying very very little tax anyways....legally.
And when you're 50, you won't have the stamina to pump out shows of a 20 year old....but if eat healthy, exercise religiously, avoid excesses...you'll bury those young ones. On the road for years a healthy lifestyle is a MUST.

Each and everyone of these points I've had to address sometime during the time (decades) I have been on the street.
And each one I believed I addressed by being smart and working hard. No worries.
Mario and Jimmy had excellent posts in this regard. They've 'been there, done that'. Listen to them!

10-4 Smile
Brent McLeod
View Profile
Inner circle
1724 Posts

Profile of Brent McLeod
Some truthful Hurts in that Post

Complimented by Jimmy & Mario-Good points

I myself find the short season unless you travel is very Hard..A good point mentioned

A good days take is often involved with a few street nutters,Emos, Winos etc
but if you handle them ok-no worries

In my case a combination of festivals,Expos & Indoor gigs keeps the winter months busy rather than the street..

Money & Taxes are crucial as are costs for travel etc...

In explaining all of the above posts to younger performers-It is real Hard work.....
gaddy
View Profile
Inner circle
Agent of Chaos
3250 Posts

Profile of gaddy
Wow, I actually agree 100% with something herblarry posted. Sign of the apocalypse, I tells 'ya!
(actually, in the busking forum that's not too unusual...)
Quote:
On 2011-02-19 10:11, HerbLarry wrote:
Your post must be a joke of sorts. With that I offer my rebuttal:

1. Money/Hours: Just because your perception of busking doesn't include working a full day doesn't mean there aren't those of us that treat it as a real job and make a good living doing it.

2. Devalued as a Performer: Again your perception. That perhaps your performance doesn't command respect is a reflection on your performance.

3. Banking: I have never walked into a bank asking for money, I make my own. I have no doubt my lifestyle is different than yours. I owe no one.

4. Here Today, Gone tomorrow: Says you!

5. Relationships with Significant Other: I have a wonderful relationship with a great lady for 27 years now. I busk she loves it. Don't blame your relationship troubles on anything but you.

6. Working Conditions: That you may choose to work around drunks, thugs, crazies doesn't require I do so. As for weather it's what's outside and that's not a bad thing in my book. Don't like it outside? Work inside.

7. 7. It's a Young Man's Game: I'm 50 though I feel like 20 physically, probably due to my low stress lifestyle and owing no one.


8. Taxes: My taxes are as honest as the next guy. What, again with the banking stuff? Busker doesn't equal tax cheat.

9. Job Security: Here I must break into laughter Smile It is literally impossible for me to lose my job. Doctors get canned for numerous reasons. Very little rights? Ever read the Constitution? Heard of the Bill of Rights? There is one right up near the top, the first one in fact, that speaks (see what I did there?) to your laughable point.
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
HerbLarry
View Profile
Special user
Poof!
731 Posts

Profile of HerbLarry
Quote:
gaddy wrote:
Wow, I actually agree 100% with something herblarry posted. Sign of the apocalypse, I tells 'ya!
(actually, in the busking forum that's not too unusual...)


Busking builds bridges to...I dunno but we're getting there. Smile
You know why don't act naive.
gallagher
View Profile
Inner circle
1109 Posts

Profile of gallagher
God, I couldn't imagine doing anything else. IS there anything else?

I think it comes down to finding what you feel comfortable in doing. A "Calling",... Vocation. Things just kind of fall into place from there.

Unfortunately,... and Comically, "Busking" is a bit romantisized,.. and grossly prostitizes. Still, it carries itself,... and those it chooses.

Ironically, because of the freedom it allows, it is one of the easiest things to do poorly. Therefore, often, unjustly, blindly critisized by failures. Still, this is again, one of it's funny faces. Learning to smile with it is the Mastery.

give it easy,
gallagher.
jimmy talksalot
View Profile
Special user
new orleans
757 Posts

Profile of jimmy talksalot
Gallagher,

exactly.

brilliant.
magicalmilton
View Profile
Regular user
London/Mallorca
173 Posts

Profile of magicalmilton
"busking is where magic and life truely meet" RIP Master Jim Cellini
Devious
View Profile
Inner circle
2120 Posts

Profile of Devious
Some of the points in here bear repeating, if you are considering any kind of expense related to learning busking.
Before you spend your coin, read the posts above.
Devious Deceptions
"Gadol Elohai!"
L'Chaim!
ed rhodes
View Profile
Inner circle
Rhode Island
2770 Posts

Profile of ed rhodes
I speak as a Weekend Warrior. I know that I will never be able to do this full time. I have fun and make a little money at the same time. That's enough for me.

Quote:
On 2011-02-19 01:07, Stperformer wrote:
10 (actually 9) Reasons NOT to busk for a living!

So you wanna be a professional busker,huh?
You watched the howto DVDs, seen buskers on youtube, maybe even caught a live act or two. The freedom, adventure, lifestyle. This is truly what you want.
Well not so fast hombre!
Below are 10 (okay 9) reasons you should not make busking your carrer path.

1. Money, or rather lack of it. Think starving artist. Don't believe me, just do the math.
Busking is not a 9-5 job. The good season is usually 3-4 months and during this time in the evenings and weekends. And most good pitches are swarming with other buskers so your gonna have to wait your turn. And hope it doesn't rain. Travel? Train, planes, hotels will eat up your money so fast that you'll be lucky to break even.


...and yet there are performers out there (here in the Café for that matter) who say otherwise. You know so much better than them?

Quote:
2. Devalued as a Performer

Like it or not, as a busker you're performing for free or at the best for a handout....or at least that's how the general public perceives you. Problem is when you want to work as a hired gig they ask themselves why they would pay you big bucks when people can watch you perform for free on the street.


If you don't understand the difference between a "tip" and a "handout" you are in the wrong place.

Quote:
3. Loans, line of credit, Mortgage

Walk into a bank, ask for a loan and then tell them you make your living performing on the street. They laugh and show you the door so fast..


Different mindset. I don't think the full timers here worry too much about loans or lines of credit. They live within their means.

Quote:
4. Here Today, Gone tomorrow

Like the wild west, frontier of the past.....the good pitches around the world are disappearing. And the remaining one's are becoming so restrictive and regulated as to be impractible or even impossible to work. Many foreign places require you to be a citzen, before they'll give you a license or audition.


This is legitimate. But as all things, it's an obstacle, not a barrier.

Quote:
5. Relationships with Signicant Other

Lets face it guys....the busking lifestyle can be very hard on a relationship.


This is something you have to be aware of in the field. There are buskers who have relationships, so there must be a way through it.

Quote:
6. Working Conditions

Drunks, thugs, crazies plus heat and cold can make one horid enviroment at times.


I work in one of the most horrid environments of all time. I work at Wal*Mart. Your average street environment is actually fun compared to that.

Quote:
7. It's a Young Man's Game

Fine when you are in your 20s....but when you hit 50 it's another matter.


This is true of anything; magic, theater, music, it's always easier when you're younger.

Quote:
8. Taxes

This is an area NO ONE wants to talk about. But it's a reality. Are you going to claim what you make. Just some? well wait to you get audited and try and explain how you support yourself and where your weekly bank deposits come from. Tax evasion is a serious matter.


Make up your mind. Are you claiming we can't make a living or that we're making tons of money we're not claiming?

Quote:
9. Job Security

Granted no job with perhaps the except of a doctor has true job security but as a busker you have very very little rights. At the whim of a shopkeeper or gov't you can lose your pitch.


Doctors can lose their licenses to practice. You have whatever rights you choose to stand up for. Me? When the policeman told me to move, I respected his authority as long as it took me to go to City Hall and complain (where I was told he'd overextended himself and his lieutenant would be notified.)

Quote:
So there you are. Feel a little apprehensive now. If so, then I've done you a service and best look at this as hobby or part-time venture at best.
If however, after reading this you think I should take this article and shove it up my @#%, and regardless of all the negatives you know you must do it because you love the art and its something that's in your blood ..... then perhaps you are a true artist, and will succeed. Because there are so many people out there that don't want you to do just that...whether from jealousy, envy or just plain ignorance.
I know. I am and always will be a Busker Smile))


...and HERE is the key point to the post. We should be putting a hard face on busking to keep Weekend Warriors (like myself) from overextending themselves and getting in way too deep, realizing that if this is something they're really meant to do, they'll ignore this and find ways around it. Me? I'm just waiting for April.
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
Kondini
View Profile
Inner circle
3612 Posts

Profile of Kondini
I don`t understand any of this ! Busking is a way of life, you do it out of a normality. You can`t learn it, you cant join it, you can only live it.

Its not a performance or money maker soley, its a neccesity born of to survive in the way you wish to live as a way of life.

In the 60`s I was on the road full time. In the 70`s had graduated to having transport and lodgings. In the 80`s became a house owner and managed to trim down the busk and still live. The 90`s were the busking boom times with less work but more cash and easier to maintain a life. The 20`s see me busk when and because I want to.....that was / is my busk,,,,a way of life now past.

So follow your heart and see where it takes you,,,thats it. No practice, skill, cost or work required.

Ken.
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » 10 (actually 9) Reasons NOT to Busk Fulltime (0 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2021 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.23 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL