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  1. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by John A. View Post
    We got onto this diversion because of your comments about your perception of panhandlers and of support available for the mentally ill, and I tried to amplify what I see as big differences between these phenomena in Europe/UK and the US. You seem to think the situation is pretty similar, but I assure you it's not.
    I'm actually inclined to agree with you because I'm aware of what goes on in the US. I doubt there's an European equivalent of East 5th Street, LA, in Europe. But try googling 'which country has the best mental health care' and see what disparity there is in the answers.

    I've just done it. Going down the page the list reads:

    Switzerland
    Luxembourg
    Germany
    Japan
    Argentina
    Italy

    And so it goes on. Ridiculous.

    But I can tell you that apparently Denver is the place to be if you crack up in the US :-)

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  3. #52

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    I dunno. I'm pretty sure I would spot a fake busker, and I wouldn't give them any money. On the other hand, Joshua Bell played in the subway and people walked by him mindlessly. There's no accounting for taste or awareness.

    I do give money to people on the street who ask for it. Yeah, I probably get scammed some of the time, but I'm not giving anything I can't afford to give. And some people do need the money. People say they'll just by booze with it, but maybe a drink is what the guy needs. Who am I to make that judgment based on an assumption? Giving money on the street is a pretty blind sort of charity anyway. It's not worth scrutinizing it too much, but I think it does fill a desperate need for some people.

  4. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan0996 View Post
    I dunno. I'm pretty sure I would spot a fake busker, and I wouldn't give them any money. On the other hand, Joshua Bell played in the subway and people walked by him mindlessly. There's no accounting for taste or awareness.

    I do give money to people on the street who ask for it. Yeah, I probably get scammed some of the time, but I'm not giving anything I can't afford to give. And some people do need the money. People say they'll just by booze with it, but maybe a drink is what the guy needs. Who am I to make that judgment based on an assumption? Giving money on the street is a pretty blind sort of charity anyway. It's not worth scrutinizing it too much, but I think it does fill a desperate need for some people.
    To be fair, I'd have no idea who Joshua Bell was either, but I'm pretty sure I could tell he was a fantastic player.

  5. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont View Post
    To be fair, I'd have no idea who Joshua Bell was either, but I'm pretty sure I could tell he was a fantastic player.
    I have no doubt about that.

    One of the reasons people walked by Joshua Bell is that there are actually many remarkably talented people busking in the NYC subways, especially solo instrumentalists. I have stopped to listen to many of them – saw players, Chinese folk musicians, cimbalom players, and the rest – and donated to the cause. There is also a goodly amount of fair-to-middling stuff, and I'll often drop a dollar in the case. Sometimes the performance is more impressive than the talent, but that's still worth something to me.

    On the other hand, there are a number of panhandlers in my neighborhood to whom I regularly give money. I know where these guys sleep, and they don't get a limo to get there. I never see them drunk or high; they may do that when they are out of sight, but I'm not judging them. They have fallen through the giant holes in our social safety net, and my help is little enough.

  6. #55

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ukena View Post
    I have no doubt about that.

    One of the reasons people walked by Joshua Bell is that there are actually many remarkably talented people busking in the NYC subways, especially solo instrumentalists. I have stopped to listen to many of them – saw players, Chinese folk musicians, cimbalom players, and the rest – and donated to the cause. There is also a goodly amount of fair-to-middling stuff, and I'll often drop a dollar in the case. Sometimes the performance is more impressive than the talent, but that's still worth something to me.

    On the other hand, there are a number of panhandlers in my neighborhood to whom I regularly give money. I know where these guys sleep, and they don't get a limo to get there. I never see them drunk or high; they may do that when they are out of sight, but I'm not judging them. They have fallen through the giant holes in our social safety net, and my help is little enough.
    This was in Washington DC, not NYC. I don't know anything about how busking is received in DC and can't assess what happened to Bell. If it had been in NYC, there are spots where he would have drawn a crowd, and spots where he probably wouldn't have, but I don't think the reason would have been people being jaded by the high level street musicianship. For sure, if he had been one of the many buskers who show on B'way or Columbus Circle/Central Park within a few blocks of Lincoln Center he would have been spotted.

    Subways stations are tough places to busk because people are always on the move, but there are spots where buskers draw crowds. My own local station often has a few regular buskers (lately, a violinist in the mornings and a cellist in the evenings). People stop and listen. I usually give to buskers (I've done it a few times, though never in the subway, and can sympathize). But I don't give to people playing super loud in the actual subway cars (percussionists, people with amplified instruments, break dancers with PA systems). I can't stand being trapped in a confined space with that (even when well executed).

  7. #56

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    Thing about the JB vid was that he's standing (as far as I could tell) between the main entry and the automatic gates. With heavy traffic either way. Needing to get a train or wanting to get out. Which means noise. Apart from everyone's own internal noise.

    Not the best place to be bothered with buskers. In any case, unaccompanied fiddle, in the style he was playing, can sound very brash/angular to the unenlightened ear. If those people could be bothered with it at all, which I totally doubt.

    I think it was a set-up. In fact, I'd bet my bottom dollar it was a set-up. Only a dedicated classical music/Joshua Bell fan might have done a double-take. I don't know why it was done, really.

    I'd never have chosen that particular location to try to get money in a million years. Would you?

    Stand on a quiet street and play something they like. In the afternoon when everyone's mellow. Simple. Loadsamoney

  8. #57

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    Quote Originally Posted by AllanAllen View Post
    You guys sound like ignorant assholes. Real music or not, it's still someone begging for change on the street. The busker getting into a lexus is about as real as the woman who had a dozen kids by a dozen different daddies to live off the welfare.
    Out in front of our church we have a food pantry for needy people to take what they need. Food, personal care items, etc. One day I saw someone in a big Caddy Escalade grabbing most of it. When I said something to him, he just laughed at me and drove off.

  9. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by Woody Sound View Post
    Out in front of our church we have a food pantry for needy people to take what they need. Food, personal care items, etc. One day I saw someone in a big Caddy Escalade grabbing most of it. When I said something to him, he just laughed at me and drove off.
    Hi, W,
    I had a business associate who many people thought was jaded. He was a fine man with a wonderful family and helped the community and his neighbors whenever he had a chance. His favorite saying was: "People are shit." Well, let the cards fall where they may . . . Life is a cabaret, oh chum, come to the cabaret . . .
    Marinero
    Last edited by Marinero; 11-25-2022 at 07:17 PM. Reason: deletion

  10. #59

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    In the supermarket today, I overheard the security guard talking to one of our local beggars. I think the guard had his suspicions, but the beggar explained to him that he had invited some friends to dinner, and he planned to marinade the slices of chicken he just picked out of the chill cabinet.

    Even our beggars are bourgeois.

  11. #60

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    Isn't this what's been happening on TV podiums for ages, when some group comes in to play their current hit song and you hear exactly the same thing as you hear from the record?

  12. #61

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    If I ever see a pretend busker, I'm gonna give them pretend money.

  13. #62

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thoughtfree View Post
    If I ever see a pretend busker, I'm gonna give them pretend money.
    You should - rubbles maybe?

    When I was still living in Paris and had to take the metro I was often confronted to something a bit similar; people playing in the carriages alongside (too) well-known tunes blasting out from guitar amps powered by car batteries (this was before those flashy self-powered bluetooth boom box affairs). I don't like being forced to pay for music I didn't order so I never gave anything (besides, the entire practice was illegal) but if they'd made an attempted assault at my tympans playing trumpet or sax or putting that amp really too loud I'd hold up my hand or hat when they passed for collecting money