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Neil Young and the First-Time Busker

December 10, 2011

We found this story on FaceBook today. It describes one of those moments in life that seem to come straight out of a dream – and, indeed, many a singer and songwriter has probably had this exact dream.

It comes from an Asheville, North Carolina, singer-songwriter (and chimney sweep!) by the name of Joe Carlson. (“No Place for the Weird” is a really nice song we just listened to over at that link.) We contacted Joe and asked him if we could share this story here on the UJBR blog. He said, “Sure!” It just makes you go, “Dang! These things DO happen! Yes!” Feel free to share it with your friends, tell your grandparents about it, your kids – heck, tell your pets. It’s just that good.

No further ado:

I usually don’t share this story, but it is inspirational, so here it goes. Many years ago, in Boulder, CO, I was trying to get up the nerve to do some first time ever, street busking on Pearl St. I made sure it was dusk, found some obscure bench away from the crowd. Didn’t open the guitar case either. Just started playing. I was belting out a Neil Young song, “Tell Me Why”. At the end of the song, I noticed that someone was standing behind me, listening. He leaned over and put a dollar bill on top of the case. I thought “So cool, my first dollar busking!.” I finished the song, and looked over my shoulder to thank him, and it was Neil Young. He was wearing a hat, smiled approvingly at me, nodded, turned away and left. Me, sitting there in shock, noticed the wind pick up, and didn’t want to loose THIS dollar bill! When I went to grab it, it was a $100 dollar bill. First day busking ever.

Neil Young. We’re pretty sure he meant it when he sang, “This note’s for you!”




The UJBR HOLIDAY SALE! – 30% off all books – goes until the end of December.

And Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader eBooks and new and improved mobile app just became available.

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December 10, 2011 8:53 pm

If that is for real, what an amazing story – wow! dano

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