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I have dedicated much of my living to street performing or "busking" these past 3 years. I perform in several locations in Los Angeles and will be expanding to different parts of California soon! Here's a list of the places I've played and a little information about what to expect if you are a busker! If any of this is helpful, please comment in this blog post, or subscribe to my YouTube channel! For a more comprehensive list of locations, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks so much!
1.) 3rd Street Santa Monica Promenade and Pier (Saturday and Sunday afternoons)
Permit required. Cost is $37 once a year and it lasts until December 31st. On the Promenade, time slots are 2 hours and performers must set up and shut down within that time. A performer must move 150 feet away from their original location when time slots have ended and must be at least 40ft away from another performer. Times to play are 12pm, 2pm, 4pm, 6pm, 8pm, 10-midnight. A performer can sell CD's and put out a tip jar and they cannot be louder than 90db.
I have had ups and downs playing on the 3rd street promenade. If you get there at mid-day it's great but if you try and find a spot in the afternoon on a weekend you will have no luck or be drowned out by the other musicians blasting their music. It's a very touristy area and people will show you love if they can hear you! You can play covers or originals. For me, I personally like playing on weekday afternoons or Sunday Mornings. Wednesday and Thursday evenings can be good.
Watch this YouTube Tutorial to find out how to play on the pier!
2.) Downtown Burbank off of San Fernando and Palm Ave. (Thursday, Friday evenings)
I love playing here and on a hot summer night there are tons of people walking around who will listen! You don't need a permit and you can play with amplification. Also parking is free in the garages.
Watch this YouTube Tutorial to find out to power your guitar and vocal effects pedal with Batteries!
3.) Melrose Trading Post (Once or twice a month on Sundays)
This is a fleamarket at Fairfax High School that I've been playing at since 2014. It is very touristy and a great place to sell CD's. You have to be booked by the market manager to play. Power is provided.
Watch this YouTube Video to see what a typical day is like at the Flea Market!
4.) Monrovia Farmer's Market (Friday Evenings)
This market shut down recently, but will be re-opening in Azusa soon. It's run under a company called "Family Festival Productions" and it set up in downtown Monrovia off of Myrtle and Olive st. There are a lot of people who come to this market to spend time with family. Most of my fans at this market are kids and young adults. Power is provided.
5.) Altadena Farmer's Market (Wednesday Evenings)
This market is held every Wednesday at Loma Alta Park in Altadena and showcases local farmers and small start ups which only sell organically grown food. They book all sorts of musicians from upright bass players, ukulele groups and jazz musicians. Power is provided.
6.) Dark Nights at LA Live (Friday Evenings)
Every Friday evening LA Live hosts a night of street performers and artisans. You have to be booked as a performer to play here. There are ton's of people. You can't ask for tips but you can sell your own CDs. Power is usually provided.