So a while ago I posted some pictures I took of the awesome Dusty Rhodes, a street musician who plays on Newark Avenue in Jersey City between Grove and Erie streets.
This week, my article featuring Rhodes and another busking saxophonist, Mike Hanley, who lives in Jersey City and plays in New York City, went online at The Jersey City Independent. Here it is.
Busking Saxophonists Bring Joy, Songs to City Streets
Life on the streets isn’t always rough. For busking saxophonist Dusty Rhodes, it’s a smooth, soulful road to joy.
People know him best as the street musician on Newark Avenue between Grove and Erie streets. At his spot, he makes about $80 to $100 a day playing what he calls “Black music.”
“Black music has consistently, from idiom to idiom, touched the world, whether it’s spirituals, blues, gospel, jazz, or R&B, it has touched the globe. Hip-hop, house, disco, dance – all that shit. Look how it has truly impacted the world,” says the 44-year-old, who adds that Blacks were instrumental in the development of the currently White-dominated rock and roll. “White people stole it,” he says jokingly.
Rhodes started playing various wind instruments in school while growing up in Newark and picked up sax in his second year at Arts High School.
“I love the sound of the saxophone,” he says. “They say the violin and the sax are closest to the human voice.” He has a long history with his old saxophone which he’s outfitted with a complex system of rubber bands that holds everything in place and keeps it sounding like new. …