Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Talent on the street - what's the story?

As a sometime drummer, I tell you: I'd like to see this guy spend some time with a real drum kit.

Here's a set of three more:

In each case, there's a lot of talent and discipline; in each case, as we see the snapshot, it isn't going anywhere.

There's a story there, clearly. What I wonder:

  • Are we seeing this side of Proverbs 22:29?
  • Or are we seeing that side of Proverbs 23:29-35?
  • Or something else?


Merrilee Stevenson said...

As you said, these are just snapshots; we don't have the back story on these men. But I didn't see any high-fallutin' rulers in any of the clips to indicate #1 as the correct choice. And not enough is known to be able to choose #2.

I think perhaps Proverbs 14:23 or Proverbs 16:26 could apply to them without question.

DJP said...

"[T]his side of Proverbs 22:29" = on the way to recognition for excellence.

David Regier said...

Coupla thoughts:

1. You can't practice drums in an apartment. So why not get paid to practice in the street?

2. A working drummer is one who plays well with others, and doesn't have to have every 1/32 note covered.

3. A good performer in the right location can make more money you might think. Certainly better than minimum wage, and often even a decent living wage.

Wendy said...

I do believe I prefer the buckets and pans to a real drum set :)

As you said, there seems to be a lot of discipline to get to their level of excellent drumming; it doesn't seem like that would likely happen if they "tarry long over wine" (or other drugs). I'm just using a minor comparison to other "musicians" I've run across at Venice Beach and other places.

And as far as Prov 22:29 - I don't think excellence has to be recognized in order to be excellence. Rather, only those who do excel will stand before kings.

And I agree with all of David Regier's points, especially #3 and especially if he performs in a unique way, say, with buckets and pans.

Brad Williams said...

I'm going outside right now to practice my banjo. I am almost certain someone will pay me to stop.

Merrilee Stevenson said...

I sure do hope these guys are on the way to such recognition. Perhaps their being on YouTube is also helping in that direction. I think it's commendable that they have developed a talent and are able to earn an income from it. Something I have yet to learn, I'm afraid.

DJP said...

Yep; the saying (I've long engendered) around our house is, "Yet another unmarketable talent!"

Pooka said...

There's an old adage I heard, back in my pagan days:

"What do you call a drummer without a spouse?"


But in all seriousness, there's nothing I see that points to Proverbs 23:29-35. I see an artist doing his thing. Maybe these guys moonlight this expression of their talent and do other things as well.

I've met a couple street performers who just plain love what they're doing and relish the audience they get. The money, of course, helps them out, but I think they find joy in the labor itself.

And the people often savor the performance too.

Wonder if Ecclesiastes works here?

Sir Aaron said...

It may just be me, but I see two guys who are unwilling to work at something they don't want to do (i.e. McDonalds). Most people have to do jobs they hate until they can get to one they like.

But maybe that's just the law enforcement cynic in me who has seen more than his fair share of "street performers."

DJP said...

You and I evidently are in the minority in thinking these gents are not employed to the max of their abilities and dreams.


Sir Aaron said...


I have two advantages. First, I've done hundreds of interviews in my line of work. I've seen plenty of "artists" who were clearly talented but just didn't want to work. Second, I've traveled a lot and am always astounded by some guy living in a London subway tunnel (or New York or DC or Los Angeles) and yet playing a relatively new guitar (or other instrument) with obvious talent.