Play it again, Dave!

Reporter: Simon Smedley
Date published: 21 June 2018

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Busker Dave has been out and about in Oldham doing his bit for Make Music Day, the annual celebration of free music which has gone ahead today (Thursday, June 21), and he didn’t even know anything about it.

Make Music is a free global event which is open to absolutely anyone.

Free events are taking place anywhere and everywhere, encouraging people onto streets, parks, plazas and porches to share their music with friends, neighbours, and strangers.

However, Dave isn’t someone who craves a lot of fuss or attention – he is content to play for the people on the streets of Oldham and its surrounding towns, and maybe earn himself a bob or two into the bargain.

Taking a short break from playing a set outside Home Bargains in the town centre, he told the Chronicle: “I love busking, I’ve done it all my life really.

“I’ve played all over Europe – it’s easy to get anywhere thesedays.

“Busking gives me the freedom to do what I want.

“Maybe you don’t earn loads of money – sometimes you do and sometimes you don’t – but the main thing is that it’s all about freedom and life.

“I can give people music and entertain them, and I love being able to do that.

“I like to go to different places every day. This morning, I just thought to myself, ‘I’ll go to Oldham today’.

“I like the atmosphere here, it’s great and the people are nice.”

As some might expect, Dave appears quite an eccentric character, and incredibly he insists that right now he lives in Switzerland.

A bass player in a band called the Steelyard Blues Band, Stockport-born Dave is over in the UK as they are touring currently.

They play a gig at the Arden Arms in Stockport on Saturday, June 30.

Buskers have proved popular on town and city centre streets for many, many years.

Many perform for a small amount of gratuity, as does Dave for the most part, but there have been many street buskers who have gone on to become household names in the world of art and entertainment.

Now famous ex-buskers include Rod Stewart, Tracy Chapman, the late, great Robin Williams, Eddie Izzard, B.B. King and Pierce Brosnan.

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Dave belts out a Beatles favourite outside Home Bargains in Oldham town centre