From rags to riches: buskers who made it big in the city

by ALYSSA JAFFER

Some of these street-performers-turned-celebrities used to be underground, literally – they got their start performing in London’s Tube stations and around the city.

Ed Sheeran

Hailing from Suffolk, the “Shape of You” singer revealed in his book Ed Sheeran: A Visual Journey that he used to sleep on the Central and Circle Tube lines.

“I spent about a week catching up on sleep on Circle Line trains: I’d play a gig, wait till 5am when the Underground opened, sleep on the Circle Line until 12, go to a session – and then repeat,” Sheeran wrote.

In his early days, he would perform at London Tube and train stations. He was filmed busking at St Pancras in the summer of 2010.

George Michael

The late Wham! star and London native George Michael began his career busking on the London Underground.

He was known to belt out Queen’s hits, including “’39”, for the capital’s commuters.

Too soon, Michael left us without a careless whisper.

Bob Geldof

Boomtown Rats frontman Bob Geldof is recognised for his strong political views and charity work, but what’s less known about him is that he struggled to make his breakthrough.

Originally from Dun Laoghaire, near Dublin, Geldof had a rough life in London. He used to sell street food by day and busk around the city by night.

No wonder he hated Mondays.

Featured photo by Huw Poraj-Wilczynski