Hello and welcome to Asheville!
As you wander our small city, you are likely to come across numerous musicians and street performers. Asheville is not a theme park so the street buskers and performers are not paid by the City to enhance your enjoyment while you visit. They live on tips from locals and visitors who enjoy their performances. Some of you may be unfamiliar with the etiquette, so we hope this short guide proves helpful.
Do I have to tip all musicians and performers I pass by? No. However, if you stop and watch/listen in obvious enjoyment – show a little love and put a dollar in.
Is there a correct amount?
They will take any amount you care to contribute, but here are some guidelines:
Stopped for a few minutes, bobbed my head, enjoyed it – $.50 – at least a dollar if there are more than two of you in the group.
Stopped for a few minutes, sang along – minimum $1, $2 or more if you weren’t in tune.
Stopped for a few minutes, danced to the music – minimum $1, $2 if you “busted some moves”
Stopped for a few minutes, took a photo – $1
Stopped for a few minutes, waited until song was over and insisted on photos with the performers – $2 minimum, $5 if you want to hold the instrument or otherwise “set the stage” for your photo
Hung out listening for 15 minutes or more – $3-5, depending on size of your group
Can I buy a CD?
Current City ordinances do not allow buskers to sell their CD’s. Some may have their music available and you can get a CD and enjoy the music at home, but you should leave a reasonable donation. What is reasonable? Minimum $5, but $10 if you can afford it.
A word to locals: Many of our talented buskers make their living traveling the country playing music. They plan their tours to places that support them, so if you hear music you love, toss in some money, even if you’re simply rushing to your next meeting. Help keep great music on our streets.
Support the arts at the grassroots level! Tip a busker.