Any busker will tell you, there are days when you wonder if barely anyone heard you at all in the hours you performed your heart out. And then there are days like today when a random stranger comes up to you on the street in a mad, huge city like NYC to tell you they heard you underground, how much they loved listening & asks when you’ll be there again â€ª#â€ŽBuskingloveâ€¬ â€ª#â€Žmovedâ€¬â€ª#â€ŽNYCâ€¬
Posts tagged: NYC NY
“I was upstairs and heard you singin’ from all the way up there and I swore you was a big black woman from what I was hearin’. But here you is….tiny little white you. You got some kinda voice on you girl!” – Man to me on Uptown A C E â€ª#â€ŽBuskâ€¬
It felt like 100 degrees underground this evening & still, this guy….one of my two favourite maintenance workers displayed in front of me, a little miracle that ’caused me to stop playing. And I never stop playing save the NYPD threatening wrongful arrest. Thought the heat had left most everyone on the platform close to comatose, only able to nod or grin their approval as opening a bag or purse risked being even more miserable than they already were.Through the heat, this guy continued his diligent sweeping & picking up trash. He’d finished the platform & had gotten to the stairs with one foot up on the lowest step, broom in hand, handled dustpan in the other, ready to sweep them clear of debris when a homeless guy, toothless, hunched over & skinnier than most, came up behind him. I kept on singing, playing & watching, ’till I saw the maintenance guy, sensing someone behind him, turned around, look at the emaciated homeless man in the eye, nodded, tucked his broom & dustpan under his arm, reach into his pants pocket & pulled out his wallet. He then proceeded to pull out a dollar bill & give it to the skinny, toothless guy standing in front of him. I stopped playing, chills were running up & down my arms when my eye’s met those of the maintenance worker’s. I touched my heart, smiled a very small, private smile & nodded.Â He awkwardly & sheepishly took in the confirmation as if he were far more comfortable with anonymity than acknowledgment and quickly resumed his sweeping.
This guys’ job is not fun, not glamorous, it smells, it’s hot, it’s cold, it’s loud & I can pretty much guarantee he’s not living high on the hog. It was a 100 friggin’ degrees underground today & still he took the time & effort to do this.
This is why I go underneath the streets of NYC, to witness love like this in action This, my ‘family’, on a daily basis, displays such random, selfless acts of love & generosity, things that never make the news or the headlines, but one by one change lives & move energy.
I hold vast love & appreciation for what I am allowed to witness on a regular basis under the streets of NYC. And I hope everyone gets a chance to be the audience to such selfless love on an ongoing basis in their lives as well. It is Grace, in action.
After many months of being illegally harassed, physically evicted, threatened with jail & worse , I’m so excited that tonight, the Uptown A C E is free from one of the NYPD’s stupid, erroneous lock downs. I got to see practically everyone …. well, anyone who’s anyone Â â€ª#â€Žhappydanceâ€¬ â€ª#â€Žindependenceâ€¬
Which means, I get to see Danny again! <3 Here, he’sÂ tellin’ me he’s actually got the key to the 14th St subway bathroom. The guy is connected! ! â€ª#â€ŽbuskÂ â€ª#â€Žthesubwaydiariesâ€¬. â€ª#â€Ždannyâ€¬
One of my 2 favourite cleaning guys on the Uptown A C E who always comes up to me & says, with a thick Russian Accent; “Dont’ stop thee muzeek, don’t stop thee museek…” #buskinglove
Let’s hope the NYPD has better things to go from here on out than harassing musicians
#Freedom #Busk #Independence
When the world feels strange and out of control above ground in NYC, I head under, where ‘strange’ & ‘out of control’ immediately become relative & insignificant
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â #Busk #NYCSubwaysÂ #TheSubwayDiaries
Ok so tonight underground I was playing La Bamba with 4 cops behind me when all of a sudden all 4 NYPD officers started dancing. All male, shaking & wiggling their hips & waving their arms in the air. If I’d only had that on tape. It looked like the NYPD version of ‘Sister Act’
Then….not 15 minutes later I’m approached by 2 more cops (not dancing) and they demand IÂ leave. I told them I’lm legal singing on the platform unampllified & showed them the rules, (1st Amendment violation NYPD) which they were 100% uninterested in. Then 7 more cops showed up & immediately grabbed my guitar case (4th Amendment violation guys) & started to toss things around, coins, dollars, my case, all my stuff….manually packing it up to force me out of the train. They grabbed my arm & commanded me to leave the Times Square station & said I could not enter again even to take a train or I would be immediately arrested. & sent down to Central Booking….Seriously guys? I’m singing…no amp, no nothing, just singing.
I have no idea who is training these rookie officers but, they’re gettin’ some seriously ‘bad learnin’ imo
And this woman, whoever you are, you are my hero. You actually squeezed yourself in between the crazed officers busy pouncing on me & my gear, to drop a dollar in my case before they swept it up. I hope I see you again on the platform to tell you thank you heart emoticon â€ª#â€Žbuskingloveâ€¬
Never fails to fascinate me how people show their appreciation or attempt to connect. Today a guy walked all the way over, the entire length of the platform, eyes fixed on me and smiling, not to tell.me something or drop a dollar in my case, no….he walked over to gently touch my strumming hand while I was singing. He touched it & walked away. â€ª#â€ŽNYCâ€¬ â€ª#â€ŽBuskâ€¬ Photo –Henning Fischer
Hi guys, it’s been a while since I’ve posted here, reason being, 2 broken elbows (yeah, I know, it took talent ðŸ™‚
I’ve been ‘surviving’ in other ways for the time being & looking forward to being back under in the near future.
In the meanwhile, just a quick note to let you know I’ve been featured in Virgin Atlantic’s Publication & wanted to share it with you:
For anyone wishing to fill some holiday gifts you’ll notice you can enter the code VIRGINATLANTIC here on the site and get 10% off your autographed copies of The Subway Diaries.
Cheers & hope everyone’s been super!