This is the sort of inane BS people seem to flock to Surfers Paradise for (above).
Sure it’s a beautiful beach, sure it’s a nice climate, but what humans really like is obscenely expensive, energy guzzling passivity enhancers, like casinos, night clubs, theme parks, and of course, riding around in circles on lawn in the back of a monster truck.
Surfers’ is an awesome place to busk. Every night I go out on the strip I make money, especially weekend nights between midnight and four.
I’ve teamed up with Sean (above) a couple of nights this week, and we have had a blast. Big tipping drunks, people singing along, freestyling, beatboxing… a pair of girls wanted to help us draw a crowd, so they started pashing each other. Sure enough, there was soon a crowd of dudes around us.
(That’s me, above, having a jam with a random dude on the Surfers’ strip, and having a ball. [Thx for the pic Caro :)])
A pair of American guys hung out with us for a couple of hours the other night. They were having a ball, singing along, and dropping $50 notes in Sean’s guitar case. At 04:30 we decided to quit.
“Come to the casino with us!” the lads insisted.
We all piled into a taxi and headed over to Jupiters, where our patrons gave us more money to gamble with. I love Americans.
Craig and I go down to the Wednesday beach markets at Surfers Paradise to busk.
Before we’ve even unpacked our instruments, old mate from the council comes over, with a security guard in tow, and tells us:
“You can’t busk here unless you have a license”
We look at him like he has just landed from another planet.
“Of course we can” I tell him. “It’s our birth right as humans to play music wherever and whenever we want.”
“Not here” says the Hitler Youth from the council, “you need to get a license, like everyone else who did the right thing”.
“Oh, you mean the brainwashed sheeple?” I ask.
“If you try to busk here, we will give you a $500 fine” he says looking a bit annoyed.
“Wow!” I say, with admiration, “you guys have really got artists under the thumb here on the Gold Coast, I’m so impressed!”
The Council minion stalks off, looking pissed, with his security dude trailing after him.
I sing a little improvised song to his back as he goes:
“We can’t sing here,
Cause we’ll cop a fine,
So this is just a free song,
To tell you whats on our minds…
You can’t stop the music,
Nobody can stop the music,
Tell the casino to close,
Tell the bribes don’t flow,
Tell your brain to grow,
Cause it’s easier…”
We went and busked down the road outside the Hard Rock Cafe.
I go down to Burleigh Heads, to this drum circle I heard about. There’s around 100 people playing music together and dancing in the park. It’s awesome.
But, there’s a big sign in the park:
“Drum circle and fire twirling – Sundays 5:00 to 8:30. No drumming at any other time.”
At 8:25, the locals start looking at their watches.
“Five minutes to go” people start calling out.
“What happens if you go past 8:30” I ask someone.
“The council will give us a fine.”
“Are you fucking serious?”
At 8:30 I’m playing my guts out, and I’m yelling:
“Time for civil disobedience people! There’s so many of us here! Let’s show the council we are free humans and we play music when we please!”
I can feel the drum circle getting behind me, but at 8:30 everyone starts to pack up and drift away.
The music fades out. I feel sick to my stomach.
At 8:35 the cops roll past, and the only sound on the beach is my harmonica; a sad little tune, mourning the rise of fascism in Australia.
(Above: thought I made it up? Well, check it out.)
If you need a hot shower at Surfers Paradise, head on over to the Arts Centre on Bundall Rd (see map below). Go round the back, near the river, and there’s a little red brick toilet block, with three hot showers! Random, but very nice.
Also shown on the map is the location of the Woolworths dumpster, which yields delicious fresh food every day.
No hosts like rich hosts.
[The cool free GPS app is “Map Factor Navigator”. Get it free for your Android.]
>> What do you really need? Learn how to pack your bag for adventure!
>> Connect with Raw Safari on Facebook.