Home/Blog, Locations/The Floatin’ Mic … at Kings Cross

Since pre-Elizabethan times, musicians and performers have come to London to sing for their supper.  And for just as long, authorities have struggled to regulate them.  Public Space Protection Ordinances create restrictions which police can arbitrarily enforce.  The logistics are challenging.  All your equipment has to be transported, weather is unpredictable and the audience can’t sit down. It’s a perfect training ground for learning to deal with rejection.  No wonder so many headline artists began as buskers.  Busking is the grassiest of grassroots music traditions.

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Except that open mics may be closer to the root.  Consider, whereas a busker's audience merely passes by, people at open mics are talking, or watching football.  Compensation is traditionally one drink. No one even thinks of putting out a hat.  On the bright side, London's 70 open mics are an equally good training ground for rejection, and musicians only need bring their guitar.

The "Floatin' Mic" -- something we most recently demonstrated at Kings Cross over Christmas -- provides London's best unsigned artists with the best of both.  Like an open mic, we provide sound and a legal place to perform; musicians only need bring their instruments to play.  And with a giant QR code, visible across the canal, we can collect tips and share them equitably with the artists.  And on top of that.... it's a boat!  And, as Ratty famously said to Mole, "...there is nothing -- absolutely nothing -- half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats."

Check out the accompanying video to see what musicians and audience had to say.

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