The gang and I arrived in Lisbon late tonight and we were in the mood for a party. So after showering and getting ready we hit the rowdy streets of Lisbon. Of course I had a different goal in mind from the rest of the group. I knew that on this Saturday night, Lisbon would be the perfect setting for a street show.
As the group moved closer to the clubs in town I searched for the best corner to set up my equipment. I choose a spot at the end of the Cais do Sodré street and began to play. It was awesome! The energy in this place was pumping and it surely helped that all my friends were there. Massimo played the guitar case, which you would have thought was a complete trap set the way his hands kept rhythm. And then Aurelio joined in with a modern day twist on flamenco clapping. Meanwhile people sang along and danced in the streets. It was so much fun.
I played a couple of originals including Umami from my album. I was also approached by a group who was doing a remote year, and they requested all kinds of 90s hits including Semi Charmed Life, Santeria, and Santa Monica.
All in all it was a great evening of music and fun. The gang wanted to continue into a club at 4:45 am, but after playing for a couple of hours I was spent and headed back to the hostel.
The following day, everyone woke up late, most likely because they came home at 9:00 am. Oh Portugal! It was slow moving, but evidentially everyone decided to go and visit the Miradouro de Santa Catarina which is a beautiful park known by the locals as Adamastor. On the left side of this park is a cool little cafe / bar and in the center everyone is sitting around listening to live music.
When we arrived there was already a musician from Brazil playing his music. He let me play one song while he took a break and I chose "Picture of Love." I wanted to keep playing but I had to wait my turn. Unfortunately what I did not know is that busking in this park is serious and territorial. While I sat and listened for over two hours another Brazilian started setting up and the first one told me he was next. There was nothing I could do, especially because at this point I believed them both to be locals.
After 5 hours of music I finally got the opportunity to play. It was well worth the wait. There was over a 100 people in this park and my built in fan base was there (thanks guys!). I played for about 1 1/2 hours and I really got a great response. However, my amp did have some issues. I think the park was just two large and the sound was lost in the wind. As a busker you are always learning how to tune in your equipment based on your surroundings. I guess this was just another learning lesson!
So in conclusion if you are looking for a great city to busk in, I would highly suggest Lisbon! It also has some amazing people and sites to see!