Gave £1 to a guy at Piccadilly Circus tube station on a day trip to London yesterday. He had an electric guitar and was playing the guitar solo in Californication by Red Hot Chili Peppers, 8th September 2013.
January 3rd, 2012.
Gave a dollar to a cello player at the Yonge-Bloor subway station. The musician was an Asian man who looked to be in his thirties or forties, with his hair tied back in a short ponytail. He had a hat on, and was dressed much too formal for a subway musician; sort of like someone you would see at a Massey Hall concert. After dropping the coin in, I received what I perceive as a strange look rather than a thank you, which made me question what I'd done wrong. But either way, it felt special to give money out of real appreciation for his music, rather than just throwing in a coin as I walked by.
January 27th, 2012
I met the most amazing guitarist today. Once again, I was at the Yonge-Bloor subway station - this time to return a stack of tickets that are expiring at the end of the month. On my trip to find the return booth, I stumbled upon the most incredible music I'd ever heard. Unlike all other guitarists, he played in the August Rush manner - the guitar resting on his lap as he tapped the strings with a hard steady beat. I literally stood there for 10 minutes just listening to him and watching him play. Every few seconds, he would look up and give someone in the audience a smile as the crowd grew larger and larger. People walking by stopped to take out their phones and start recording. A man standing next to me turned to me and made a remark about the originality of him music, to which I replied with a nod. He had a stack of CDs on music stand beside him, but there was no price. I would probably have purchased one though if there was a stated price. Sadly, my phone doesn't have the record feature and so the best I could do was record him with a horrible quality voice-recorder, and take a picture of him. Name? Andrew Lopatin. Made a note of it on my phone before he left. I'm surprised he isn't more famous, but I guess chances like that don't come by often enough, and most musicians are just happy to share their talents with the world one subway station at a time.