This seemed like such a great spot that I returned one short week later to see if it was just beginner’s luck, or really the kind of place that I could reliably return to. I’d say it was more of the latter, as once again people generally seemed happy I was there. (Although I do wonder if anyone in Portland would actually verbalize their displeasure.)
I installed a few motion-activated LED lamps to give my backpack drum set a little more visual appeal. Maybe it’s too gimmicky, though–I don’t want to diminish the songs as mere vehicles for a light show. What do you think?
It’s still pretty warm out, so I’m looking forward to cooler, shorter days, when I can get started a little earlier and maybe…play longer?
After literally months of searching for someone to play on the street with me, plus some traveling with my other band, I decided I would just have to strike out on my own. I was reluctant due to some, er, difficult encounters with the public as a more conventional singer/guitarist, and I wasn’t sure how the pedestrians of Portland’s Alberta Arts neighborhood would take to a one man band.
I found a spot in front of a closed repair shop, by an empty lot. Not close enough to the Salt and Straw line that I was bothering anyone, but people could walk over and check things out if they felt like it.
I’m happy to report, it went pretty well. I played for over an hour, which is a long time in the intense summer heat, and got more than a few smiles and head bobs. And the best thing: some people even hung around for a few minutes to really listen. That’s about the best compliment a street musician can get.