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Sheet Music Songs for busking with out backing

Benjasaurus

New Member
Messages
3
Locality
Australia
I'm gonna try busking soon but I don't know what songs to play. I need stuff that sounds good without a backing track as I most likely can't plug in an amp and don't have the money for a battery powered one.

I'm open to playing any genre.
 

Greg Strange

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,066
Locality
Hamilton, Waikato, North Island, New Zealand
There's literally thousands (or millions) of tunes to choose from...The Beatles, Songs From The Great American Song Book...get a fake book or three and learn a few tunes...Come Sunday, Misty, Stormy Weather, Killing Me Softly..., and a few million more...

Greg S.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
13,019
Locality
Burnley bb9 9dn
Pick stuff you really like because you're going to play it many many times. For me "The american song book" is a rich source of tunes.

You might find Botm & Sotm useful.
 

Clivey

Senior Member
Messages
990
Locality
Edinburgh/Hot Rock off African Coast
Hi. Welcome. hope you get a chance to respond to your responses. Many post, leave a single question and the forum waits unfruitfully for feedback.
It's a tough gig having no BT's but doable and actually less painful than toting a heavy Bluetooth speaker round town for sure .
Like others have said get your set pinned down and assess what numbers are ok without accompaniment. For example you probably don't want to do baker street , or careless whisper but perhaps Big Spender, Benny hill, Pink panther blah also folk type songs could be ok. Try them.
You are not giving much info on horn.
I saw a dude last summer with a drum style Bluetooth speaker slung round his shoulder and his wee curly soprano and I thought "clever boy". I may try that instead of the 100 watts on a trolley and 10m in Backpack gig bag.
Invest your tips in a speaker. You will be able to play better , probably ( make a more musical) performance and for longer.
Look forward to hearing back from you.
 

brianr

Senior Member
Messages
1,056
I used to busk when I was a student ( so a long time ago)
I used a Ghetto Blaster with cassettes ( so, a very long time ago ! )

If you can manage some kind of backing it will increase your sellability and give you more money !!!!!

If you can’t use backing of some kind, then as a money making venture, play stuff that people will recognise.

If jazzy, then don’t get obscure, no be bop !!
Ballads do well. Georgia, summertime, in a sentimental mood etc

If pop/rock. Same principles. Easy listening will give more money.
Beatles always good for a little money!

Having said all that, it is important to have fun. So stick in something more obscure, if you fancy ....just not too often.

I used these times to learn the harmony to a 12 bar blues in about 4 keys. Great fun and very productive. Even earned some money !!!!
Just jamming over the blues, with no backing.

Good luck and enjoy it.
 

randulo

Playing alto 2 1/2 years
Subscriber
Messages
4,719
Locality
France
I am not joking when I say, find a pleasant-looking person who can clap or play tambourine and pass the hat, it would be a great help. Barring that, a few tunes come to mind, such as the aforementioned Georgia, and other Ray Charles hits such as You Don't Know Me, Hit the Road Jack, Hallelujah, Yesterday, Imagine, Here There and Everywhere, Swing Low Sweet Chariot, Amazing Grace, When I Fall in Love, Autumn Leaves, Bye Bye Blackbird, Fly Me to the Moon, No Business Like Show Business.

Take a look at backing track sites for the lists of songs. You may spot some titles you can play.
 

randulo

Playing alto 2 1/2 years
Subscriber
Messages
4,719
Locality
France
Good thing I'm not in the UK, then innt! (nor is the OP for that matter).
Wow, looking at Australia's larger cities, the laws are complicated. I wonder where @Benjasaurus is?
 
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OP
B

Benjasaurus

New Member
Messages
3
Locality
Australia
Hi. Welcome. hope you get a chance to respond to your responses. Many post, leave a single question and the forum waits unfruitfully for feedback.
It's a tough gig having no BT's but doable and actually less painful than toting a heavy Bluetooth speaker round town for sure .
Like others have said get your set pinned down and assess what numbers are ok without accompaniment. For example you probably don't want to do baker street , or careless whisper but perhaps Big Spender, Benny hill, Pink panther blah also folk type songs could be ok. Try them.
You are not giving much info on horn.
I saw a dude last summer with a drum style Bluetooth speaker slung round his shoulder and his wee curly soprano and I thought "clever boy". I may try that instead of the 100 watts on a trolley and 10m in Backpack gig bag.
Invest your tips in a speaker. You will be able to play better , probably ( make a more musical) performance and for longer.
Look forward to hearing back from you.
Actually come to think one of my brothers has a small bluetooth speaker do you think that'd be enough?
 

randulo

Playing alto 2 1/2 years
Subscriber
Messages
4,719
Locality
France
Actually come to think one of my brothers has a small bluetooth speaker do you think that'd be enough?
Depends on the power. If it's something like a JBL, a little larger than a cigarette box, it would probably not be enough unless you play very soft.
 

Clivey

Senior Member
Messages
990
Locality
Edinburgh/Hot Rock off African Coast
Actually come to think one of my brothers has a small bluetooth speaker do you think that'd be enough?
Hi here's a link to the kinda thing the guy was using with his soprano. If it were me I would want to be able to swap out the rechargeable battery to increase my time out there. 2.5 hours was my last set and I was doing that 3 nights a week in 2017 using 100watt speaker and an external motorcycle battery.
By the way it's great to have some young blood about the place .we are kinda getting long in the tooth round here recently though very young at heart.
Please feel free to let us in on what "youngers" are into in the way of Horn music/ music in general.
Anyway here's the eBay link to the speaker I was referring to which was doing a great job accompanying a loud soprano.
 

Jules

Formerly known as "nachoman"
Messages
4,595
Locality
brighton by the sea
Sorry Randy but having a collector or bottler is illegal in uk and may get you arrested.
Is it? When did that happen? Back in the day Swampthings (my busking band) usually had a hatter- frequently my wife or we occasionally had a guitar, bass and drums track which freed me up to go and hat the crowd.......
 

randulo

Playing alto 2 1/2 years
Subscriber
Messages
4,719
Locality
France
From what I understand in searching in the UK is that it's entirely dependent on the local counsel.

 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
13,019
Locality
Burnley bb9 9dn
In an ordinary shopping town, gathering a crowd may attract an obstruction charge. Touristy places are different.
Google the buskers union.
The street act of 1830ish applies. Street entertainers were taken out of the street traders classification in around 2004. If you sell CD's you need a licence.
I'm using a sub zero szpa-p15 with a blue tooth ipod touch.
It has a 7ah battery which lasts about 4 hours.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
13,019
Locality
Burnley bb9 9dn
From what I understand in searching in the UK is that it's entirely dependent on the local counsel.

Out of date. The union protested councils requiring street entertainers to have a licence. Private property has its own rules.
 

Wade Cornell

Well-Known Member
Subscriber
Messages
2,084
Locality
New Zealand and Australia
From my perception people of Brisbane aren't particularly into "standards" or jazz. the average person on the street won't know or care about the American Songbook or most tunes from more than 30 years ago. The Beatles might work, but otherwise stay fresh and even use Dance/DJ music if you've got some little backing setup. DJ style music is very popular and gets people dancing/reacting whereas ballads and dreary music has them walk on. Another advantage of DJ style music is that there is lots of it and you can just improvise as it's mostly without changes (one key). Move, and make eye contact...you're a perfomer, which a lot of players forget. You've got a matter of seconds to catch people and give them a bit of fun. Whatever you do, Don't put up a music stand and read. 10 year olds get away with it, adults don't.
 
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