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Old 08-09-07, 02:30 AM   #21
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Well, you got a sidekick in your Walkin Tall SF style episode, Eric. I'll stick with you on this one. I think it should be just like it was before. An uneasy truce between the crack heads and the circle buskers. 5pm, rotation starts. Plain and simple. Just because the sun goes down later in the summer doesn't mean a thing.
We'll see what happens tomorrow.
*suspencful music plays*

...To be continued
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Old 08-09-07, 06:46 AM   #22
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Sounds pretty awful there at the moment.

If I can offer any advice it would be to follow the chess maxim of not making any decisive moves until you have all your pieces in place first. Eric's call for letters is one of those moves, every-one should put pen to paper. A quiet talk with the law officer Eric mentioned and any supportive traders will also help your case. Canvassing the local councillers and local media for support may also prove productive. I believe Seattle has embarked on a campaign of actually paying street performers to work some areas as they believe it reduces potential crime and improves the public environment. Checking that out may give you a powerful arguement to take to city authorities.

I guess what I'm saying is, wait until you have a strong position before you tackle any-one over the issue.

Good luck.
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Old 08-09-07, 11:41 AM   #23
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Cleveland Ohio, too, where they have "Sparx in the City", and pay buskers a small fee to work. It seems to be good for everyone.
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Old 08-09-07, 02:46 PM   #24
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Letters are good, pm me, ask for my address, and write me letters.

I mentioned that we should get paid by the city, no go. Even though the people in charge of the port are good people, I can tell that their opinion of street performers is still flavored by what is here, these people have never seen a circle act, so although they are positive, they don't entirely get it.

Right now they want the permits to cost $600 a year. I'm raising a big bitch about that one.

And if any of you guys can find me links to the legislation in seattle and chicago please let me know.
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Old 08-09-07, 10:55 PM   #25
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This letter is in the mail right now with my resume.

Eric;
I heard you’re trying to get a permit system in place like in Boston. That’s great news. I lived in San Francisco for a few years and did street performing there.

I do a pancake flipping and juggling comedy show.

It was tough. The weather and the police hassling was a rough constant struggle. I try to be law abiding, but the laws were never clear to me or the police, so I just did my best to be nice to everyone and go about my shows.

I didn’t like shows on Pier 39 because the crowds were in a mall mentality and, since the shows were on a stage, they weren’t as powerful or engaging (plus, I didn’t make enough money).

The streets some days were great. The police on duty would be present and friendly, the tourists, though jaded (who could blame them) could be turned into really fun and grateful crowds. The money was okay, and some times I’d come across another performer who liked doing large shows and we’d take turns on a spot.

The reason I’m telling you all this is, some days it was horrible. The reason I left town in fact was the sorry and scary state of the streets. I got death threats from the Bush Man, was chased by a silver guy named Brice and fists were swung at me by another silver man named “Goldy” / “Almond.”

I’m not interested in street justice or revenge or even dealing with these people. I just want to do great shows and give people a smile and an experience that they will remember forever. Dying because my show was in the wrong place seems crazy to me. And it sounds funny, but I moved to Los Angeles to escape San Francisco’s violence. Santa Monica and Citywalk are much better regulated and more fun places to perform --And, I think they do better financially too.

I love street performing. I would like to help in any way I can. Contact me if I can help you with anything.

Scot Nery
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Old 08-10-07, 06:01 AM   #26
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Nice. That's one. Keep 'em coming.
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Old 08-11-07, 03:43 AM   #27
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Hat Second half

Section 4 Display of Permit

A performer and artist shall clearly display his or her permit while performing or
displaying sidewalk art and shall allow inspection of the permit by any police officer of the City of Boston or staff person of the Office of Cultural Affairs on request.

Section 5 Permitted Performances and Sidewalk Art Displays

(a) Performances and sidewalk art displays may take place in the following
locations:
1.) in public areas, except within one hundred feet of an elementary and/or secondary school, library, or church while in session, a hospital anytime and except those public areas excluded by the City Council, Boston Police Commissioner, the Traffic Director or Public Works Commissioner, pursuant to Section 7 of this Regulation.
2.) on private property, if the performer or artist has obtained the written permission of the owner of such property or other person with authority to grant such permission with respect to such property.
3.) and in a public area where an authorized fair or public festival is being conducted, if the performer or artist has obtained the written permission of the sponsor of such fair or festival.

(b) Performances and sidewalk art displays may take place between 7:00 a.m.
and l0:00 p.m. Sunday - Thursday, 7:00 a.m. and l1:00 PM Friday and Saturday unless
otherwise allowed by the Boston Office of Cultural Affairs.

(c) A performer may use electric or electronic amplification up to a median sound
level of 80 decibels measured 25 feet from the source of the sound from 7:00 AM to 7:00PM and 70 decibels measured 25 feet from the source of the sound from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM. Upon a complaint by a resident, a designated person from the Office of Cultural Affairs or Boston Police Department shall with the permission of the resident, measure the sound within the residential dwelling. If the medium sound level exceeds 50 decibels and exceeds the background sound level by at least 10 decibels, the performer or group of performers causing the excessive sound level shall either turn down the level or move a distance from the residence so as to reduce the sound level within these limitations.

(d) Drums shall be inaudible at a distance of 100 feet.

(e) A performer or sidewalk art display may not block the passage of the public
through a public area except as permitted by the sponsor of an event under paragraph (a) of this Section or otherwise allowed by the Director of Traffic and Parking or Public Works Commissioner. If a sufficient crowd gathers to see or hear a performer or view a sidewalk art display such that the passage of the public through a public area is blocked, a police officer may disperse the portion of the crowd that is blocking the passage of the public, but said police officer shall not cause the performer or artist to leave the location.

(f) Sidewalks displays must not obstruct handicap ramps, doorways, windows, or
emergency safety equipment such as fire hydrants, shall not exceed more than 20% of the width of the sidewalk from the property line of the premises in front of which the display is installed. No display shall exceed twenty-five square feet and it shall be prohibited to place a carpet, rug, blanket, or other such covering over grass in a public place.

(g) No performer or group of performers shall perform at a distance of less than
100 feet from another performer or group of performers that already is performing.

Section 6 Legal Conduct

(a) A performer or artist may accept contributions of money or property at a
performance or sidewalk art display. Contributions may be received in any receptacle. Performers may offer for sale representations and recordings of their own work, including records, cassettes, videotapes, compact disks or digital video disks. Artists may offer for sale original works of art.

(b) A performer who performs or artist who displays sidewalk art and accepts
contributions under the provisions of this Regulation shall not be in violation of any Boston ordinance, rule, or regulation solely by virtue of those acts.

(c) A performer who performs or artist who displays sidewalk art under the
provisions of this Regulation shall be presumed not to constitute a disturbance of the peace or quiet, unless it is determined by a police officer that such a performance is not in the spirit of entertainment but rather is gross and disorderly conduct.

Section 7 Exclusion of Public Areas

(a) Upon the written recommendation of the Boston Police Commissioner, the
Director of Traffic and Parking, or the Public Works Commissioner, the City Council
will designate to the License Commission the responsibility to conduct a public hearing and determine whether a designated public area shall be excluded from further performances or displays of sidewalk art. The License Commission shall notify the City Council of any such License Commission determination.

(b) No public area shall be excluded from performances or displays of sidewalk
art except: by majority decision of City Council or its designated committee pursuant to subsection (a) of this Section 7; or by decision of the Police Commissioner in the case of an emergency; provided that no public area may be excluded from performances or displays of sidewalk art by the Police Commissioner under this Section 7 for more than 7 days.

(c) The exclusion of public areas in an emergency, as designated by the Boston
Police Commissioner, shall be effective immediately. All other exclusions, by
recommendation of the Boston Police Commissioner, Traffic Director, or Public Works Commissioner, shall also be effective immediately and a written notice of said exclusion will be mailed to all permit-holding performers and artists stating their right to a hearing before the License Commission or Boston City Council within 7 days.

(d) Upon issuing a permit, the Boston Office of Cultural Affairs shall also issue
to the performer or artist a current and complete list of all public areas in the City of Boston that have been excluded from performances or sidewalk art displays.
Section 8 Penalties

(a) Noncriminal Disposition.
Whomever violates any provision of this regulation may be penalized by a
noncriminal disposition as provided in Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 40, Section 21 D. For the purposes of this regulation the following officials shall be enforcing persons: Boston Police Officers and/or Office of Cultural Affairs staff. The penalty for each violation will be $25.

Section 9 Suspensions and Revocation of Permit

(a) The Boston Office of Cultural Affairs may suspend a permit for not more than
30 days if any information contained in the application is found to be false.

(b) The Boston Office of Cultural Affairs may suspend a permit for not more
than 30 days if a performer or artist has received three noncriminal dispositions within one calendar year.

(c) The Boston Office of Cultural Affairs may revoke a permit for the remainder
of a calendar year if a performer or artist has received five noncriminal dispositions
within one calendar year.

(d) After revocation of a permit, the former performer or artist may not obtain a
new permit until such date as the Boston Office of Cultural Affairs may determine,
provided that such date shall not be more than one year after the date of revocation.

(e) No permit may be suspended or revoked unless the Boston Office of Cultural
Affairs holds a public hearing concerning that suspension or revocation, written notice of which has been given to the performer or artist not less than 10 days prior to said public hearing. Such notice shall set forth the facts constituting the basis for the proposed suspension or revocation.

(f) A performer or artist may not receive a permit unless all outstanding tickets
from previous years have been paid.
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Old 08-11-07, 03:47 AM   #28
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Default Pt #1

3/31/2004
PROPOSED BOSTON REGULATION OF STREET PERFORMERS and STREET ARTISTS
by Stephen H. Baird
Community Arts Advocates, Inc.

The Boston City Council finds that the existence in the City of Boston of street
performers and street artists provides a public amenity that enhances the character of the city and seeks to encourage such performances and artists to the extent that they do not interfere with the reasonable expectations of residents to the enjoyment of peace and quiet in their homes or the ability of businesses to conduct their business uninterrupted.

This regulation seeks to balance the Constitutional First Amendment Rights of the
performers and artists with those of the residents and businesses of the City of Boston.

The Boston City Council designates the Office of Cultural Affairs of the City to be the agent of the City of Boston primarily charged with the responsibility of supervising the provisions of these regulations.

Section l Definitions

The following terms are defined for the purpose of this regulation as follows:

(a) “Perform” includes, but is not limited to, the following activities: acting, singing, playing musical instruments, pantomime, juggling, magic, puppetry, dancing, reciting and sidewalk drawings (working with non-permanent water-soluble media, i.e. chalk, pastels or watercolors directly upon the pavement).

(b) "Sidewalk art" means original works of art displayed in Public Areas. It shall not include: 1) any artwork produced by any person other than the sidewalk artist
displaying the artwork, or 2) any artwork purchased or taken on consignment and held for resale, or 3) any entirely mass produced or commercially manufactured clothing.

(c) “Performer” and “artists” means an individual who has been issued a permit
pursuant to the provisions of this Regulation.

(d) “Public areas” includes sidewalks, grounds, parks, playgrounds, and all other
public ways located in the City of Boston.

Section 2 Prohibition

(a) No person may perform in public areas or display sidewalk art for sale
without having obtained a permit issued under Section 3 of this Regulation.

(b) Any person who performs or displays sidewalk art for sale in a public area
without a permit issued under Section 3 of this Regulation shall be fined not more than $25. The proceeds of any such fine shall be directed to the General Fund and
appropriated to the budget of the Boston Office of Cultural Affairs. Any person paying such a fine in excess of $l0 may obtain a permit under Section 3 of this Regulation without paying a fee therefor if application for such permit is made within 30 days of such payment.

Section 3 Permit

(a) A permit shall be issued by the Boston Office of Cultural Affairs to each
applicant therefor in exchange for a completed application and a fee of $l0, subject to the provisions of Section 8 of this Regulation.

(b) A completed application for a permit shall contain the applicant’s name,
address, and telephone number and shall be signed by the applicant.

(c) A permit shall be valid from the date on which it is issued through January 3l
of the following year.

(d) A permit shall contain the name and permit number of the applicant plus the
year in which the permit is valid and any special allowance made by the Boston Office of Cultural Affairs pertaining to the permit.

(e) A permit shall be non-transferable. Each member of a group of performers or
artists who play or display sidewalk art together shall be required to obtain an individual permit.

(f) Upon issuing a permit, the Boston Office of Cultural Affairs shall also issue
the performer or artist a printed copy of this Regulation.

(g) If a performer or artist loses his or her permit, one replacement permit per year may be obtained for a fee of $10.
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Old 08-15-07, 02:44 PM   #29
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We have another meeting tomorrow at 10, alot of things are being finalized.

quick check, I'm looking myself, but anybody who reads this thread that knows, price check on permits in other cities?
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Old 08-15-07, 08:34 PM   #30
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Default freedom of speech

Hey a guy called Joe Joe is having problems with busking in Myrtle Beach CA.

and is fighting it, Ist amendment or something. Freedom of speech etc, says you shouldn't have to pay to play in USA..
look here...

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/v...395&forum=6&21

and look here for his press release letters,, very good..

http://joejoeonline.com/magicians_rights_disappear.htm

might be helpful Eric,, Good Luck.

cheers Nick
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Old 08-15-07, 10:45 PM   #31
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Thumbs Up Now THAT's what I'm talkin' about ... his cups have balls

JoeJoe for President!

Good on ya Nickboy for that one ...
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Old 08-19-07, 11:20 PM   #32
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Eric! You pigfuker (look it up before you judge.)! You know I've been your faithfull sidekick on all this whole ordeal. And I'm watching Fear and Loathing right NOW on a sunday afternoon, drinking SIngapore slings with mezcal on the side.
The story, so far, Ladies and gentleman is that we have won (sort of.) the sympathy of the local police authorities .
An officer who's name can be rendered if you scream "HEY ABBOT!" has been quite sympathetic of our busker cause and has gone beyond the call of of Duty to insure that circle shows not only exist on the wharf (yeah, I learned to spell it this weekened.) but that they are shows of QUALITY.
He has gone out of his way to inforce quality shows on the wharf (spelled correctly.) and insist upon a pitch that ROTATES...a concept that seems to not exist on this side of the continent...strange, as it exists on all other parts of the big blue marble...
Sadly, he is only around, with his charming partner, on weekends, so the pitch can only be enforced during the week.
Which has left me running, tail between my legs from a sunday show or two as I just can't deal with another day of watching a gang full of thugs soak up the best times of the best pitch in the USA and pulling terrible hats from it.
I'll be ready come monday after a bout of drinking and smoking...
The saga continues...
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Old 08-20-07, 03:12 PM   #33
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Club idling behind a black curtain

Greycat et al,
My "friend" reported to me that this "Mario" fellow never left his van on Saturday night (just circled the pitch)... I spoke to him as he was checking out the scene ... Dr. Eric gave him a thumbs up, so he bailed ... listen, if you guys want something done ... and it's not being done by the proper authorities... then you have to do it yourself, the long way... remember, everybody is alone sometimes … with proper surveillance… ‘nuff said… all I know is, this situation is being watched … and by people that care … be patient … sometimes all bad things disappear because someone forgot to pee before they left home. Do not argue over little stuff... work together ... we have a common goal.

Step 1 ... gather as much personal information as you can on whomever...then gimmie gimmie ... watch and be amazed as I, l & g, repeat I, the used-up, washed-out dishrag of a busker formerly dubbed King of the '80's by a guy who will never say THAT to me again will make that man over there disappear.
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Old 08-21-07, 01:50 AM   #34
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B-man and the rest o the lads and lassies,

Nothing but TONS of respect for all you have done not only for the pitch, but what you have accomplished in this world. And I highly doubt you are 'all washed up' either. I do this same thing with all my circus mates. Even though I can do a one arm handstand for a minute (on both hands.) I still think, now that I'm mid thirties, that I'm all washed up.
Like fine wine, B-Man..
Indeed, this situation is a tough one requiring that age old attribute that very few folk have mastered: Patience.
Doc can't cure cancer, but getting to the bottom of it CAN. I'm not going anywhere, and neither, I think is Eric.
And soon Pete Sweet will arrive in a few month as cavalry.
Actually, the best of the situation has occured. Mario is GONE for the time being. One of the SF officers, an incredibly cool man going totally out of his way to help out the tradition of busking in SF, had a long talk with him. I watched, Mario was not amused.
Now, next little piggie is getting the Breakers to ease up a bit. This will be harder work. However, they weren't around on monday so I had a great time banging out three lovely shows in the afternoon sun.
Maybe I will have to work around them when necessary, give them the fish eye when I AM around. Voodoo dolls are not out of the question, as is spiking the cheap booze they swill on pitch with vigor.
Again, thanks for all the effort. Busking won't die in SF anytime soon....
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Old 08-22-07, 05:22 AM   #35
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Default Patience or patients ?

Greycat,

Thanks for the positive words ... the scene seems to be getting better ... "better", meaning no eye-stabbings ... good on ya' to both you & Dr. Eric ... and Scot for keeping you both dishonest.

Just for my own info.... how many break dancers are we talking about?

Is it one troop? They have a leader? I heard Mario paid them ... they were his henchmen, I thought.

If you can give me a description...hopefully, more than "he's black and obnoxious" because so is my friend and he's libel to beat the crap out of himself by mistake ...
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Old 11-11-07, 11:18 PM   #36
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I do not know what has been happening at the wharf the past couple months as I have been out of town, however,I was walking off the pier today after shows (Sunday) and there was a big circle show happening on the pitch.
I do not know who it was, he was doing some Hawaiian fire dance stuff.
He seemed to have some solid skills.
So it would seem that circle shows are back up and running at the wharf.
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Old 12-14-07, 05:31 PM   #37
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Default the permit system

OK the fix is in... Fisherman's wharf now has a permit system for buskers, gods help us...

here are the gory details:
http://www.sfgov.org/site/port_page.asp?id=69524

I think this stinks and has loopholes in it large enough to drive a truck thru- 600 bux a year and required insurance? WTF?

On the + side it does allow some wiggle room for pitching items like 2 card monte and wondermouse. And also I think it might clean up the circle a bit. THe "breakdancking" thugs and Statue Gangs won't be able to dominate for hours at a stretch (we'll see: think loopholes)...

Mostly this "program" will help musicians- who now have official sanction to sell CDs, and will hurt jugglers and escape shows who must work a large circle. Sidewalk shows will probably be able to ply the trade with little interference (at least I've been able to... but then it's the slow season...)

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Old 03-04-10, 02:42 PM   #38
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I've never made more $$. I've been out 3 summers. The big cobble stone pitch is always occupied and it's nearly impossible to play there unless you are one of the locals with a permit or a silver-man with a crack habit. I'd always play out in front of Hooters. You can get a nice big half circle going there. Get there around 10am and you got the spot. Play a show, go have a beer at hooters, play a show, go have a beer at hooters, and on and on untill you get to tipsy or your just tired of making money or god forbid get a date (not a good idea )
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