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The Chinese Busker

Discussion in 'Street, Documentary, and Portrait' started by adic88, Jun 10, 2012.

  1. adic88

    adic88 Mu-43 Regular

    May 25, 2012
    Originally published on my blog. Reprinting here for sharing with the M43 community.

    I was in KL Sentral (the central transportation hub of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) this morning, and as i was walking around, the sweet sounds of a violin came over the air. A little known fact about me -- i play the violin too, or rather, i used to play it as a teen. Can't say i was any good, but it is a lovely instrument to play, and given the chance to pick it up, i'd do it again.

    It seems the source of the music was a elder Chinese man. He must have been in his 60s, sitting in his chair, violin in hand. His song selection was limited, just to a few well known tunes. And he played them in an unending loop. Not particularly dextrous, with notes going randomly off-key every so often. But interesting enough that i stood there for more than several moments to listen. His violin case quickly filled up with coins and notes, he emptied it once it was half-full; perhaps that's a busker's strategy: people are more likely to tip when they see an empty case?

    1. 7171897745_436f5172db_z.
    P6100013-Edit by aizuddindanian, on Flickr

    2. 7357112022_4c0b85f4d6_z.
    P6100022-Edit by aizuddindanian, on Flickr

    3. 7357111920_e6afb6d491_z.
    P6100029-Edit by aizuddindanian, on Flickr

    4. 7357111812_2e6bbc2ceb_z.
    P6100035-Edit by aizuddindanian, on Flickr

    5. 7357111734_89912bf840_z.
    P6100033-Edit by aizuddindanian, on Flickr

    Photographs taken with an Olympus OM-D EM-5, Olympus 45mm lens.
    • Like Like x 6
  2. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    Nice - I particularly like the second photo. I suppose emptying the case makes sense, people would probably be more likely to give if they thought he wasn't making much money.:smile:
    • Like Like x 1
  3. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China

    Actually in China, (I know that's in Malaysia), we see buskers and even beggers keep their cases filled with some coins so that people feel encouraged to do what "others have done" to give some money:eek: 
  4. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Great series and text as well. I think this is a common street performer strategy - leave some money there so people know others are giving but not so much that people think you're making a lot.
  5. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    that's the point, I used to read that a Londoner who works at daytime dressess up begger-like in the evening and earned a million that way!
  6. adic88

    adic88 Mu-43 Regular

    May 25, 2012
    Thanks for the compliment, appreciate it.

    Well it worked for me... i tipped him TWICE! :)  haha
  7. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    #2 and #5 are my favorites. Street entertainers always "salt" their collection vessels in order to prime the pump.

    • Like Like x 1
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