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Old 05-07-04, 11:54 AM   #1
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Default denver buskerfest

has anyone here done this one? i might go do it this year. but i have another gig booked that weekend, so i'd like to hear that it's worth it before i skip out. the gig i have that weekend is the easton busker series in columbus, and it pays $1350us, but i would have to find accomodation and possibly rent a car. not the greatest deal, so i'm thinking denver would be much better. anyone?
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Old 05-10-04, 06:20 AM   #2
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Maybe this belongs in the ethics category, but I'm curious, and I don't mean to cast aspersions, just offer my own opinion. Does your Columbus contract have a cancellation clause? Doesn't dropping out if something better comes along defeat the purpose of having a contract? We performers get upset when promoters cancel, for whatever reason. It would seem that the promoters who believe they have signed contracts with performers could take action to recover additional expenses, effort, etc., in finding replacements.
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Old 05-10-04, 10:58 AM   #3
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USA ethical questions aside ... the best buskerfest south of the 49th parallel

Although I've only had experience with the first couple of Buskerfests, I do know that the situation there has changed drastically since its inception.

Back in the beginning, the hats were small (unless your name was Furgeson and you got the "in front of the bank" pitch) and the (shared) accommodations sucked (Super 8). We were even supposed to buy (repeat BUY) our festival t-shirts.

Since then the situation has changed dramatically ... the hats can be huge (depending on if you get the best slots, have a monster show and it doesn't rain on your sorry ass) ... the accommodations deluxe (no sharing unless you are Alakazam and then it’s only with the best looking nubile in Colorado) and you are showered with gifts (well ok, you get a crummy button).

Al Kraizer is still at the helm (he’s been around longer than my tired old ass) but his “girls” (I won’t mention names) run the show now … and be warned … they do show favoritism (a la Halifax) but they don’t do it with plane fares and accommodations … they do it with pitch sites … so if you are a strong act (with a strong rep) and you know how to kiss ass properly (don’t talk to Singer) you can make the Rockies rock.

P.S. way back when, the Young One and I stole a batch of festival t’s and passed them out to the performers … (it says “Volunteer” on the arm) … I got in a lot of trouble and I’ve never been invited back.

P.P.S And yes, they did steal Robert York’s image for their logo.
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Old 05-15-04, 07:33 AM   #4
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Speaking from performing at Easton's sister site in Kentucky, the hats can be pretty large there. I'm guessing the dynamics are about the same since it's set up similarly, and run by the same people. If the rain holds off, and they don't set up a band right across from you (which I don't think Easton will do), you'll rake it in.

Katy from Shadowbox is really working hard to get Columbus used to Buskers, and have us make a lot of money. If you MUST cancel, do it as soon as possible so she can fill that weekend. She is super-nice and doesn't appear to be jaded about performers... yet. I'd like for it to stay that way.

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Old 06-29-04, 03:11 PM   #5
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Default Denver Review.

2004 was a good year for Denver, rain threats notwithstanding. I did it 4 years ago, and lucked out on the Sunday, sharing a pitch with Johnny Fox and the Calypso Tumblers. And let me say this, about that. BRAVO to the New York Break Dancers!!!!!!!!!!!! I shared with them this year. Brilliant act, and genuine people doing it. They swept the place, and were drawing huge crowds, being humble about it at the same time. These guys will be everywhere next summer. Great act, and good to work with.
In 2000, Johnny and I approached the Tumblers at the start of the day, with this outrageous request. How about if we each do half hour slots, and share fairly? They became instantly pissed, tried intimidation, and then complained that there were so many of them, so few of us. There was no reasoning with them, and they do run an hour. When we finally told them that we intended to run our shows exactly as long as they did, they suddenly could do the half hour, and did.
In any case, Al K was fighting city hall this year, and renovations were afoot, costing the festival a few choice pitches. It wasn't the wheelbarrow-o-cash it's been in former times, but yes, it was a yummy year.
I didn't see favoritism, or maybe I was one of the favored, but I had the "A" pitch on day one, the "F" on day 2, and the "B" on Sunday, sans shmoozing. Go if invited, by all means.
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Old 06-29-04, 03:24 PM   #6
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correction that would be the USA BREAKDANCERS and Julio, Il WILL and CUBA are wonderful guys to work with!!!! See you guys in Sept.!!!
Busker Coordinator/ Performer- Sunsets at Pier 60 Daily Festival
Clearwater beach, Florida
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Old 06-29-04, 04:12 PM   #7
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To everybody I did not get to say goodbye to, see ya soon and Taxi, remind me to tell you our Calypso story some time.
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Old 10-28-05, 03:06 PM   #8
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La la la la la....ahh....a nice old thread...

Johnny Fox originally started it in Boulder as we performed side-by-side for years. Both his Freakatorium and Buskerfest should be moved back where it all started...Boulder.

Performance International is responsible for this and other festivals...but if the best Carol Hiller can do is to ignore thousands of emails and phone calls, it's best to let them manage their other festivals with corporate sponsers and leave the busking to the pros.
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Last edited by zoobie; 10-28-05 at 04:35 PM.
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Old 10-28-05, 04:32 PM   #9
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As a result, the Denver Buskerfest was absorbed by city & promotional mis-management and the 2005 fest was cancelled.


I'd like to remedy this...but I'd need a lot of help bringing it back to Boulder.

As Regis says..."I'm only one man..."
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Last edited by zoobie; 10-31-05 at 07:45 AM.
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