gareth wiecko

that’s the thing with bourke street: it’s filled with all these musicians busking their craft in exchange for whatever coins you can spare. most of them are so-so, but i have to say some are just plain brilliant they deserve a stadium instead of a street for an audience. but i reckon it’s still a good way to get their names out there, at least. you know, hustlin’ it but on the down low.

of the number of times i’ve been through bourke, so far, there are only two artists i’ve found memorable enough to bother knowing their names:


woodlock, whom i first saw and heard playing “lemons” on my very first day in the city, way back in 2013. that song is special to me, not only because it’s an awesome song, but also because it reminds me of when i was fresh off the boat and breathing in melbourne’s artistic vibes filled my lungs with a deep love for the city.

i was like, “yep, i could definitely live here.”


now this one is probably out of character, as i’m not really into instrumental/classical music. i mean, sure, i listen to beethoven and mozart once in a while when i feel like injecting a bit of culture into my system to make me seem worldly but those times are pretty rare.

and by that, i mean i listen to them when i’m sad and my misery needs a good background music to set the tone for a full-blown depression.

but seriously, though, it’s amazing how music moves you. there’s something about it that tugs on your heartstrings like it’s cello. you know what i mean?

listening to gareth wiecko playing piano that day felt exactly that: i swear to god, his music touched my heart, right down to its calluses. i could sit there and listen for a long, long time. i honestly could. it was that beautiful to my ears. you can really feel the intensity of his passion radiating out of his keyboards.

i even caught raven swaying to the music a couple of times. this kid knows good music when she hears one. but then again, she dances to cheesy tv commercials too so i don’t know what gives.

now, i’m not really one to linger around buskers or give them money, for that matter, but last sunday, i did. and i gave him 5 bucks. the most i’ve ever given to a busker. to be honest, he deserves more than that but if i gave him more, i would be the one left busking begging on the streets. it might not have been much but rest assured i gave it wholeheartedly.

when jeff found out i gave the dude money, he complained while crossing the street (on his skates, of course.), “i wrote a song for you, you didn’t even give me 5 bucks!”

“WHAT DO YOU MEAN?” i shouted back from about three meters from where he was. “I GAVE YOU MY LOVE!”

and that, my friends, is how you dodge a bullet.

6 thoughts on “gareth wiecko

  1. YES! I love Woodlock and Gareth Wiecko! Woodlock I discovered them way back around 2013 too and every song they put out is amazing – so far I’ve bought all the albums. I also like Amistat, that duo that places slow acoustic songs. Also at one point there was the band Our Symphonic Life but they parted ways now. It really is amazing, the busking culture in Melbourne. Bourke Street is such a great location for it and on a good summer’s day, it really is good entertainment. Like when a busker gets a crowd, the trams have to go soooo slow to avoid hitting any people :”D

    I LOVE your retort to Jeff. Perfectly done ❤

    1. they make bourke street so vibrant, don’t they? i notice those that play on bourke are some of the really good ones which kind of led me to the conclusion that bourke is a prime spot for buskers. i don’t know how the busking business goes,really. i heard they have to apply for it. like, get permits from the city or something. but, yeah, i reckon one of the cheap ways to enjoy the city is to buy takeaway sushi and eat it somewhere at bourke street while enjoying the music for free. haha.

      amistat. that sounds familiar. i’ll keep an eye out for them. (you seem to know your favorite buskers well!)

      1. I read somewhere that you have to audition to become a busker, and you start out on the streets outside Bourke Street and work your way up. Very brave of those who busk because it’s like, anyone can come see you and make their judgements.

        Concerts are so expensive these days and even if you get to go, there will be people in front of you, taller than you. Or at least taller than short me. Watching a busking performance it is so easy to get a front spot and get close 😀

        1. hahaha. short people problems. i get that A LOT! =D

          have you noticed this old man who busks at chinatown? he plays violin. his music is kind of sad. just thought i’d mention him. he popped in my mind all of a sudden.

          1. There’s one elderly Chinese man who plays the gu zheng (Chinese violin). And there is another who plays the violin, I think that is the one you are referring to. Lately I’ve noticed they’ve been taking turns busking outside the underground Coles in Melbourne Central. I usually see one or the other when I exit the station on my way home from work. Always a nice sight.

            1. it is. for some reason, slow music makes me emotional that i suddenly start thinking about life and stuff. lol.

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