August 14, 2014 by vinylburns
Normally at a festival, the smart money says to let the youngsters go to town on your crowd, dumb them down a bit with hack lines they think they stole from an old milkman clown act in 1988, but the reality is that it’s been stolen so many times since 1937 when an old ugly Austrian guy constructed the original premiss, that it’s essentially original material again, and we all know how well that does with the idiots who’ve anaesthetised themselves down to the level of re-explaining menstrual pad commercials over the water cooler on Thursday mornings.
Typically it’s the old classic scenario… The loudest, highest, toughest, biggest, most tooled up… they all equate to being the least talented, interesting, thoughtful, creative and pleasant performers on the pitch.
Whichever one you’re watching, there’s always some kid, parentless and unprepared for this street corner, burning a bridge, the importance of which he has yet to even contemplate… His return journey across the rivers of retribution is a solid 15 minutes in the future, and he has points to make regarding how much the performer looks like a tardo.
That aside, allow me to elaborate and zoom in on a few specific flavours of awful.
Loud, aggressive, greedy Peruvian Bands make relatively little, per capita… though there are usually 18 to 45 in an entourage, so they’ll tend to suck a town dry, while each individual member still, essentially, loses money by being there.
So too to beautiful, genius, artistic geniuses, regularly blown out by a douchebag with a bucket, a rag hat, a knife and a sound system. No money.
Caught in the middle, a rag tag fugitive (sometimes literally) fleeting moment, where art meets war and builds commerce and connection. Just as nerdos and meat-heads have their finest moments in the heat of military conflict, so too in the volatile DMZ of street performing.
To Summarise… you idiot.
It’s a battle field, where the strangest talents survive and endure… Unexpected, and unexpectedly welcome, in your face and angling for your wallet. Showing you a tiny doorway into their world, their madness, their perfection. You’ll marvel at the snow on the peaks, the surf on the oceans, the explosions on the front line, but you don’t get it.
The embedded richness deals you a glancing blow, enough of a war story to tell your water cooler buddies about on Monday, but you’re not even telling the right story.
“He caught the thing…” “She nearly fell…” “It was on FIRE!”
The achievement is in what we broke.
We remember what we forgot.
Success is that we’re even there.
YOU win because WE even showed up.
You silly fucking child.
Thanks for checking in…