Ear pollution

Talentless buskers driving city businesses nuts

A plague of tin-eared buskers provide dubious entertainment on virtually every Copenhagen street corner, and as the weather warms up, members of Indre By Lokaludvalg, the inner city committee, fear the cacophony will get even worse.

The committee has received more complaints than ever before about lousy street musicians making life unbearable.

“We heard from a hairdresser whose clients are sometimes forced to listen to a talentless musician play the same song over and over again for three hours,” Ole Benny Hansen, the vice-chairperson of Indre By Lokaludvalg, told Metroxpress newspaper.

The song will go on … and on and on …
As if one rendition of the love song from 'Titanic' wasn’t bad enough, that song seems to be the only one included in the repertoire of many of Copenhagen’s buskers. And then there is the fellow that wanders Central Station playing the same single note on his recorder … over and over again.

Hansen wants to require buskers to audition to prove their musicality before they are permitted to play.

“Street entertainment is fine, but the quality is often just too low,” said Hansen.

READ MORE: Inspiration from the Spire | Culture, culture everywhere

Buskers are required to move at least 100 metres every hour, but if the performer doesn’t want to vacate a favourite corner, businesses often face a difficult choice: either they can brave  another rendition of 'Take me home, country roads' in the hope the busker might follow the song's advice, or they can call the police.