Alex Berkow, Juggler

Alex Berkow juggling a few things you could buy at Lowe’s near Pritchard Park.
He’s not entirely sure how it happened, but Alex Berkow thinks that his gimmick of juggling hardware for the crowds in downtown Asheville might have happened because he lost his regular juggling equipment and had to start over with anything that had a long handle. Far from ruining his act, his new gimmick of tossing and deftly catching wrenches, plungers and hammers through the air also brought him a fair amount of tourist coin. Continue reading Alex Berkow, Juggler

Charles Clyde Toney II performs “Drunk Angels”

Charles Clyde Toney performing in front of the Woolworth Walk.
Charles Clyde Toney II is hardly a stranger to Busk Break. In fact, he’s one of the most documented performers in the series, thanks largely to one particularly fun evening of music on a very warm spring night this year, where he was joined by fellow buskers Kris Wahl and Eris Valentine. Until now, however, there hasn’t been a recording of Toney performing by himself. Continue reading Charles Clyde Toney II performs “Drunk Angels”

Patrick and Cody play an untitled original

Patrick and Cody playing in front of the Woolworth Walk on a sweltering summer day.
It was scorching hot on the streets of Asheville when I met Patrick and Cody, but you’d never know it from how chill these two were during the recording. They were hanging out in the shade in front of the Woolworth Walk, brought there by local busker Charles Clyde Toney II, and all three were performing together as I approached. Continue reading Patrick and Cody play an untitled original

Sparrow performs “Walt’s Waltz”

Accordion-playing busker Sparrow performs in front of the Woolworth Walk on Halloween weekend in 2010.
I met Sparrow the weekend of the first MoogFest in downtown Asheville. Even on an average weekend, the city could be mistaken for a costume party that had somehow spilled out onto the streets, but add Halloween weekend and a major, national-level electronic music festival to the mix, and the experience began to border on the hallucinatory. Continue reading Sparrow performs “Walt’s Waltz”

Brian McGee and Krum perform “First Kiss”

Brian McGee and Kevin “Krum” Rumley perform “First Kiss” in downtown Asheville.
Shortly before the release of his album The Taking or The Leaving, alt-country and Americana artist Brian McGee spent the the better part of a day busking song from the recording in front of the Iron sculpture in downtown Asheville, NC. He was joined midway through the set by drummer Kevin “Krum” Rumley, whose unique talents include the ability to seamlessly keep time while puffing away on a cigarette. Continue reading Brian McGee and Krum perform “First Kiss”