WE MUST DO
IS 17/01/96 AND FOLLOWING
MONTHS OF EMOTIONAL UPHEAVAL I DECIDE IT
MAY BE INTERESTING TO START KEEPING A DIARY ON MY LIFE AND THOUGHTS. SO
BEGAN THE LABYRINTH BUSKER JOURNAL - HANDWRITTEN, WHILE BUSKING,
TRAVELLING, LOVING, SURVIVING IN SEVERAL COUNTRIES.
THE JOURNAL IS AROUND 750,000 WORDS LONG AND REACHED THE END OF ITS LIFE WITH MY RETURN TO ENGLAND AND THE CHANCE OF SEEING MY DAUGHTER REGULARLY.
with thought provoking
articles on busking, philosophy, the universe.
Whole books from a busking diary written while busking Europe in the last years of the last millenium.
Glimpses of a 750,000 word diary that could radically alter your view on life, love and the soul.
|As the diary progressed it
became ever more attuned to the motivations of Heart, Mind, Body and Soul with
their relevance and interaction gradually dissected amongst those who
came my way. People who shared love or any of love's by-products
(including hate) form the spine of the work, but the diary is forever
moving forward at a rapid or gradual pace.
Images or food
Prose and poems
Diary snippets Antwerp,1996
Buskers Good and True
Some fine buskers I've met along the way
Brian Songs for Rachel
Motivation behind some of my songs
A collection of bite size stories and articles
Pick a song and listen on your default player
Labyrinth Busker top Ten
Which pages are hot on www.buskerbrian.com
Things we must do
Antwerp, January '96 - Complete book from diary
Amusement and fracas on a night out in Rome
Belief, Heaven and Zolar
Exploring the need to believe
Tale of Uptown Suzy
Highly charged emotions dominate this event in 1995
The Societies within me
Are you one consciousness, or a vessel for many?
The Missing Link
The Human invasion of Earth
Cranky Brian shoots a theory or two on the universe
Gender Role reversal
No one is 100% male or female. Cue the Heartbreaker.
The Green Busker
It is Spring, 1994 and an inexperienced "busker" takes a ferry to Belgium.
My grandfather was a lighthouseman and farmer in Iceland
Cue the Heartbreaker.
A list of some pages on my sites that may be of interest
Know what you're looking for? Search my site.
Jesus? Celtic or Rangers?
My busking pitch is interrupted by religious zealots promising the "good life".
Lyrics from some of my songs
New Clear Winter
May, 1996, and this diary book heralds a calm before the storm of fascinating experiences that would make the remainder of 1996 so special.
Plato and Socrates debate Beauty
An imaginary debate between plato and Socrates on Beauty.
Hurricane Rita, Asperger's, Bob Dylan
A look at the boxes we use to define mental illness, mild autism and suchlike. Could it be that we are not normal?
Soulmate: A five minute Play
A woman is faced with seeking to isolate one advisor within her. Heart, mind, soul and body present their case in this short Play.
The Tortoise and the Hare (Rabbit)
Two months on from "New Clear Winter" and the busker has aided "Arthur" to lift the sword from the stone. It is time for more adventure in Luzern, Bern and Gstaad.
Home is emotional fulfillment
The main title for the Tortoise and Hare book.
Time is Temperature. They are one and the same, and everything that is, was, and will be, follows a set sequence. This sequence can be defined as "explosion".
Enjoy a few short videos. Show lasts half an hour or so.
|There's always something more to
find with the Labyrinth Busker journal
must do 4
...besieged by Winter complete
21/01/96 - Sun - ANTWERP - I had the usual January 'hard to get to sleep' thing, so finally woke up about half past noon. Twas then I heard Gerhard coming home - he'd been floating around town and other people's appartments as is his wont. I could hear him coming into the other room...then, all of a sudden, he was completely silent, which mystified me a little.
Eventually, he did appear at the door to my room and, exchanging greetings, he came to sit near my bed. He said, "It was a strange thing! I came in and when I came to my bed I saw a note on it. So I thought someone had called and left a message. But then, when I read it, I saw it was in English..."
Mystified, I said, "What did it say?"
"Something like...you say you want to be loved, but you don't say how..."
The whole imagery of this just made me burst into laughter. It seems these words are going to haunt me.
But, back to reality - now the latest plan is for Gerhard and Sven to form a band, calling themselves the 'Strawberries' or whatever. With this band they want to team up with people of their choice. So it would go Brian Pearce and the Strawberries - Herman and the Strawberries.
Well, that's as good an idea as any - so let's see if the Strawberries come to FRUITion.
Today, being Sunday, means phoning Ruana and (like the weather scenario on the last page) our relationship is having its own Winter with Spring a long way off in this case also. She would have got my 'angry' letter I sent last week, so let's see what her re-action will be. At least, with Ruana, we generally have been able to argue and debate healthily. In fact, the problem that's disjointing us is the lack of arguing and straightening things.
So...I don't know! Maybe she'll bite my head off about some things I'd said in the letter, but, as she claimed last week, letters are like songs. You catch the mood of the moment.
Nonetheless, though I detect a shade of reluctance to speak to her because of my guilt mixed in with my hurt (stirred in with indecision and confusion) I shall call her and keep on doing so - if she wishes it.
After all, she is 'family' - and I love her.
22/01/96 - Mon - Famous last words! I did call Ruana - and she was out. Gone to the theatre with her mother.
Jeez! Talking until 8 in the morning with Gerhard. Twas a wonder I was able to get up as early as 3 in the afternoon. Added to other delays and a visit to the library it meant getting to the Meir too late for effective earnings.
Now it's 9.50 pm and I need a shower. We got food from the G.B., so am I going to get out tonight? Well...if I do there won't be much to be earnt. Time now to start thinking of next month's rent. Worse still! February is not only a short month. It is a poor one for money. I feel truly trapped economically.
Letter from my brother enclosing an entry form for a 'Buskers competition' in Derby.Representatives of a festival in Aarschot (in October) were in the 'Doos handing out entrance forms for their 'Buskers competition'.
Well...I've never been to one, but I suppose they might be fun if you don't take them too seriously.
If the weather this October is as good as last year then I would be better in Switzerland - maybe I would be better there anyhow. Coming back for this one little show would be expensive, but I'll just wait and see.
Not the time or money to phone Ruana today, so maybe it would be best left to next Sunday.
23/01/96 - Tues - Well, there has been two nights staying in as the cold continues.
Last night, looking at pictures taken of Rachel in the first months of her life, set me to thinking of her and missing the experience of seeing her natural progress through life. I said to Gerhard that it gets harder to find true delight in the small things and experiences I undergo. Even the beautiful mountains of Switzerland and other exotic variations of last Summer failed to inspire me as it might once have done. But, to be with Rachel and then to take her to the Cathedral Square to see Jack performing his juggling act would be a truly rewarding experience for me - because I would be seeing everything through her eyes and her mind, knowing she would be viewing it as a magic and exciting taste of life.
My first holiday abroad was a coach trip with a football team to Austria. Even basic, uninteresting scenery made impressions, because I was aware that this was another culture where people behave differently and speak strangely.
My most clear memories now are of a football pitch on a hot day in Linz, the youth hostel and a bar where our team and an Austrian team met and drank together...exchanging cultural information. Then there was David (a team mate) being helped to the youth hostel completely drunk...and then me pleading with the hostel warder to let him in.
The more spectacular visit to the salt mines in the Tyrol left little imprint.
But now, I find it is the more spectacular scenery and images I need. The fairy tale image of Bern from the Bundeshaus. The Munster gardens and its view over the indecisive river below. It is harder for such things to excite me - they just help instill a sense of calm or thoughtfulness.
Through Rachel, however, I would experience entirely different perceptions of Bern. The children's play area in the Munster gardens and the water powered cable car going from the valley to Bern proper. These would be her memories of Bern.
So...frustrated here in Antwerp, I wait for the time when I can see Rachel more and have private quality time with her. I know the day will come, but this Summer coming I must make sure I finally break out of this financial Winter trap pattern.
24/01/96 - Weds - Woke up today with only 10Bfr to my name. Even had only two cigarettes. Well, if I was to get some more cigarettes and if I was to get into De Klamper for a coffee and to write this, I needed money. Nothing for it but to busk Offrandestraat. Luckily there weren't any other buskers along it. So, with a croaky 'first thing' voice I broke into 'Help u thru the day' and then 'Will ye go' - and found I'd made 5Bfr for the effort.
'A subtle spark' didn't take fire, but it did make 40Bfr - a little bit better. 'Uptown Suzy' and 'Know that's not really me' really got things going a bit, especially with the black people (Zaire,Congo). It seems extra flattering when they give something because it suggests my style of singing appeals to their cultural views - and that I like, because their culture is based very much on emotion.
'Fairy Tales are real' was the star song. I think because I actually sang it with a smile, much expression and using eye contact. Even muslim schoolgirls were charmed enough to walk back and put money in the hat.
I peaked then as I shortened the next song. I couldn't put anything into it. My last song was an attempt to strum through 'Will u sleep'. My voice felt good on it, but it's the sort of song that needs the correct atmoshere. So...280Bfr...I could get my cigarettes...and here I am (De Klamper).
Yesterday was just too cold. I can't sing effectively or play the guitar well in conditions like that. Halfway through a song my strumming fingers would go numb. So I found myself with hardly a franc and relying on Gerhard last night to buy the beers on his slate down the 'Doos. So I feel the need to repay him as soon as possible.
After doing a few songs on the Meir yesterday I decided that I would phone Ruana. It's something I can't control. I just HAD to speak to her and I couldn't wait until next Sunday, as I had planned. I said to myself, "Only 10 to 30Bfr and that would be long enough," but no....I must have put in 60 or 70. As I had only 200Bfr before calling - it left me short for food, but it was worth it.
After the first 30 seconds of "How are you" s etc....I span into top gear: talking,talking..."...sorry! I seem to be talking too fast." "Oh no, I can follow you"....talking, talking..."sorry! I seem to be talking too much." ....."Oh no, I quite like it."...talking, talking..."Oh damn!".. the money's run out again - 'I'll have to put 10Bfr in, because we haven't said goodbye properly'...and so..."Hello again!"...talking, talking..."Oh, and did you get my letter?"..."I did! It was beautiful!"..."Beautiful!?!"....."Yes, I'll show the letter to Char.."....Aah! Talk quick, Brian..."Ah! But when I wrote the letter I..." ....money ran out...."Dammit!"....I never did get to say 'Goodbye' properly...and she likes to say goodbye properly too....C'est la Vie.
In between my 'talking' Ruana said some very nice things. She said that people in Antwerp actually like what I do - and many of them don't see me as the sort of 'nuisance' they might pin on most other buskers. I need these comments at a time when other musicians are pressuring me to be this or do that.
Sometimes I think it would be nice to be able to do my own lead on top of my strumming, because it seems I'm the only person around here who truly understands what is needed with my music. First...you seek out the melody of the song...then you improvise from there. To play entirely random, indistinct and unpatterned lead detracts severely from the potential of my songs.
Where is the crux? Does my music have the capability to help musicians who, in their own right, are forever seeking fulfillment? Or is my music more suited to people like David Lloyd and Ruana, who (like me) would tend toward an investigation of the melody?
Sven came around last night - and, as Gerhard wasn't in, we started rehearsing on my songs. 'Will u sleep with me' took us one and a half hours of work and, really, the ammount of work that needs to be done to integrate innovative musicians would seem to indicate one song per session. Sven and Gerhard have their own ideas and concepts about how best to use that 'voice'.
For fruitful interaction, as Gerhard once explained, they would see the pattern as an equal input of contribution to the musical whole. Well, I can see that the concept would be good, but maybe it will work out better if Gerhard and Sven plan out their instrumental creativity with a free rein by extending the middle, beginning or end of a song.
I'm not the world's greatest musician, so to ask me to do things I haven't got my mind and reflexes round would leave me confused...and somehow, the idea of 'talking' spontaneously is something I might find hard, not to mention the pretence of it. Jim Morrison (Doors) used to do that and...in the end...probably believed he was a font of wisdom. I am perfectly capable of falling into that trap. To me, my music is something I share with those in the audience who need it.
COMPLETE ONLINE DIARY SEGMENTS:
Want something to read for an hour or two?
Then the life and loves of a busker can take you into his world for awhile. Reliant entirely on his music and what he can earn from it in bars, on terraces and the street (plus the mutual aid and faith of his friends), he colours his inner and outer worlds with layers of purpose and belief that stretch from real, felt, imaginary to flights of fancy.
What actually is real, felt, imaginary or a flight of fancy can often surprise him as well as those who line his path.
The busker monitors his path as Lone Wolf in the spirit world of the Soul as love and relationship quandaries abound in an historic Swiss city.
With close to zero busking experience, a man sallies forth from Britain with an idea of busking to survive. He had a one way ticket, no money and a massive well of despair.
Tortoise & Hare
New Clear Winter
Monster in NY
Things we must do
Other sites presented by the Labyrinth Busker journal:
audio.buskerbrian.com My songs with lyrics
free.buskerbrian.com About me
home.buskerbrian.com Loads of articles, stories and titbits
apachejohn.buskerbrian.com Bishop's Stortford based band
leddrain.buskerbrian.com Swiss based singer/songwriter
wolf.buskerbrian.com Busking adventures in Bern
wildwolf.buskerbrian.com Part Two: Busking adventures in Bern
moon.buskerbrian.com My music, plus featured acts. plus colour
as.buskerbrian.com Asperger's Syndrome
pearce.buskerbrian.com Family Photos over 100 years
Iceland Genealogy Family ancestry over 1,000 years
Pearce Genealogy British ancestry (Hornchurch. Rickling Green)
Cranky Brian "History of time" Provoking ideas in philosophy and science
My space Become a friend
Contact me Just that
Online Diary Podcasts
|COMPLETE ONLINE DIARY
Tortoise & Hare
New Clear Winter
Monster in NY
Things we must do