21-year old Jane, who used to pick banjos in the subway, is now living a dream as a top busker. Connecting with others while traveling through life at her own way, she sees her banjun out of the window as it fades into the railway distance.


21-year old Jane, who used to pick banjos in the subway, is now living a dream as a top busker. Connecting with others while traveling through life at her own way, she sees her banjun out of the window as it fades into the railway distance.

“I felt so free and liberated,” Jane remembers. “The minute that the train left the station, I knew that I was making a good decision. I didn’t have a job lined up or a place to stay in LA; I just knew that I had to leave.”

Jane’s leap of faith led her from Los Angeles to San Francisco and then to Seattle, all without having booked any hotels along the way. Her destination changed every few days — depending on where she felt most drawn — but her reasons for going were always the same: she wanted to see different parts of America and find inspiration for her music.

“I love meeting new people,” Jane says. “Everywhere is different and everyone has such amazing stories.”

Being able to “pick up and go” whenever she wants is one of Jane’s favorite aspects of life as a busker; she told us that even though she plans on settling down eventually, this lifestyle will always be part of her identity

Jane, a 21-year old girl who used to pick banjos in the subway, is now living a dream as a top busker. Connecting with others while traveling through life at her own way, she sees her banjun out of the window as it fades into the railway distance.

“It was great”, she says “I love that thing…I wish I could keep it.”

As Jane moves along through the country on her own free will, this independent young woman is making her story with her voice and her banjun.

At the age of 21, Jane is living a dream.

In a suburb of London, 21-year old Jane, who used to pick banjos in the subway, is now living a dream as a top busker. Connecting with others while traveling through life at her own way, she sees her banjun out of the window as it fades into the railway distance.

For Jane, who started out at age 17 on the London Underground with nothing more than an acoustic guitar and a voice, busking was more than just a way to support herself. It was also an opportunity to hone her skills and make new connections.

“I think I would have been scared [to perform] if I didn’t have my guitar,” she said. “It was always something that made me feel calm.” She added that when she took her guitar to the subway, she would often back away from fellow passengers and just focus on playing for herself.

While in college in England, Jane developed relationships with other musicians who had performed there and began busking full-time after graduation. She’s since traveled across Europe and even performed at Glastonbury Festival twice last year — once with The Staves, and once with a band called The Shires.

In May 2017

Jane is a 21-year old banjo picker who used to play in the subway for coins. She developed a loyal following and was able to quit her day job. Now, she is living her dream as a top busker. Jane travels the world at her own pace, connecting with others and performing in new places daily. After years of hard work, she has finally made it.

Jane is happy to travel on her own but enjoys meeting up with other musicians along the way. She hopes to inspire others who are traveling down the same path. Her banjo sits on the shelf as she looks out the window of the train, fading into the distance.

​Jane, 21, picked banjos in the subway before having her dreams come true and becoming a top busker. She was spotted by a talent scout in the subway nine months ago.

Since then, she has been traveling from one city to another, connecting with people and sharing her music. “I can’t believe I’m living my dream,” she says. “It feels like being on a roller coaster.”

Although it’s always a challenge to balance work and life, Jane is so happy to be able to make a living out of her passion for music. “Everyday is an adventure,” she says. “I get to meet all kinds of wonderful people.”

“I still remember the day when I was packing up my banjo at the subway station,” Jane recalls. “The first time I played there was three years ago. And now, it seems like a lifetime ago.”

The banjo has now faded into railway distance. But Jane knows that her music will always be there with her as she continues her journey through life.

I’m Jane, a 21-year old from Auckland, New Zealand who has recently started a six month solo adventure around the world. I have always been a keen traveler, visiting countries such as Japan, Australia and the USA with my family in the past. After completing a Bachelor of Arts in media studies at Auckland University and working for several years in the marketing industry, I realized it was time to do something different.

I’ve decided to travel with an open mind and take any opportunity that comes my way. A few days ago I arrived in Berlin and caught up with some old friends. They told me that they had seen me playing banjo on the subway last week.

To my delight they informed me that I was now one of the top buskers on their street. This came as a surprise to me as I hadn’t even considered myself a musician.

“If you listen to music a lot, then you can pick up on how others play,” she said. “It’s my passion to play.”

Jane has performed in well-known places such as Union Square in Manhattan and Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village, and her songs usually get the attention of passersby.

Jane has been busking for over three years now and uses mostly the banjo, but also plays the ukulele. However, she made it clear that it is not about making money for her. She does it because she likes it, and it is a way of connecting with people from all around the world.

“I just like how I can make people feel something with my music,” Jane said. “When they hear me play they feel something inside them and they are happy, that makes me happy too.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *