busker NEV – never too old to busk

9 March 2020

Have you ever stopped and talked with a busker?

There is something about the sound of buskers, no matter what age or genre of music. They add to the occasion as you wander around market stalls or shopping malls.

One such person is Nev Lerch who has been busking at the Caloundra Street Fair on Sundays for almost two years. He also busks at the Twilight Markets on The Esplanade on Friday nights monthly.

You can’t beat the old tunes

Familiar old tunes of yesteryear ring out from the accordion he is playing, usually in the shade. Memories come rushing back of family parties and sing-a-longs to the rousing Irish tunes. These, in particular, played on a piano by one of many musically talented relatives.  It reminds me of my father grabbing one of us, any female close by, and twirling us around the room. Never mind he wasn’t a particularly good dancer after a few drinks!

For my partner Tama it is the likes of Pearly Shells which causes him to reminisce about the guitar playing with singing with his extended family.  It reminds him of the sea he loves so much.

 Who can resist the rhythm of that tune anyway? Picture the ukulele playing Cook Islanders or in Hawaii with the women doing the most beautiful hula dancing.

Early starts soon forgotten

Yesterday we stopped and talked to Nev.   First, he told us he started lessons on the accordion 17 years ago. Nev is 81.  When he retired he decided to go into about six different Aged Persons Homes and play for them.  He observed the elderly loved the music.  Nowadays he limits himself to the street busking and one “Home”.

He has thought about giving it up especially when the alarm goes early on Sunday mornings to get him up in time for the Street Fair. However, he says once he is here he forgets the early start. He loves it too much to give up yet.

By the look of his accordion case on the ground in front of him lots of others enjoy his street performance too. He has a pile of coins and notes blowing in the wind.  Above all else, he deserves some reward for the atmosphere he helps create.

He loves a chat with passersby. By the way, have you ever asked a busker their story? Make their day and ask them.


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