I haven’t written on this blog for a while – standard blog etiquette suggests I should apologise for this, but such an act would be entirely fruitless and ultimately rather narcissistic; perhaps akin to apologising for playing music slightly too loud on an uninhabited island. So I won’t. Part of the reason for this is … More The survival of folk clubs
I’m just about to head off around Europe again after a couple of weeks in Britain to play at a couple of festivals and attend my sister’s wedding (a lovely day, and congratulations to the newlyweds, Zoe and John). I‘ve made the crossing over the Calais quite a few times in recent months and think … More Proud to be British?
I get asked this question quite a lot, and the truth is that it’s very difficult to say. Different songs work better in different cities and countries and I still haven’t quite got to grips with the formula of what will work well and what won’t. Ultimately, the goal for me is to play songs … More What are the best songs to play?
It’s a funny thing, travelling alone. I love it, but it really does force you a little bit out of your comfort zone sometimes. Perhaps it’s part of being British, but I think we all have some sort of natural reticence towards going up to someone who we’ve not been introduced to and initiating conversation … More Let’s talk to strangers more
I used to be slightly tentative about telling people that I busk for a living. There is a wide spectrum of reactions, ranging from, ‘Wow, that’s really cool!’ to ‘Ah. So are you homeless then?’ The latter was the response I got while at a wedding and making small talk with a friend of the … More So, are you homeless then?
What makes a good pitch? I’ve just arrived in Bruges, which I’ve found to be the best city for busking so far. I’ve come here twice before, and there is a lovely little pitch behind a couple of the museums that is wonderful for busking. It doesn’t look it: the footfall doesn’t seem much at … More Finding a good pitch
A new law passed towards the end of 2014, and it rather passed under the radar. It’s called the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act and it’s one of the most absurdly heavy-handed and authoritarian pieces of legislation passed in recent memory. It gives councils the power to create Public Space Protection Orders, which they … More Busking: Under threat in Britain