The Busker Program is an integral part of TransLink's commitment to making transit a unique experience for customers, and to reflect the vibrancy of the music and art scene of our region. Since 1986, the program has provided low-barrier opportunities for musicians to generate income while entertaining large crowds of commuters at key locations throughout the transit system including SeaBus Skywalk, Burrard, and Canada Line stations. The program has featured thousands of artists, and has been an important platform for professional buskers, as well as emerging turn professional musicians.
TransLink releases an open Call for Musicians on an annual basis each fall. The Call is open to solo and duo musicians. Interested applicants submit a short video and professional bio listing past busking and performance experience. Submissions are juried by a 5-person panel composed of notable music professionals and TransLink representatives. Successful musicians are issued a licence valid for one year and perform at designated times and locations across the system. The program is overseen by TransLink’s Arts and Culture Program.
TransLink Buskers receive:
Opportunities to showcase their music to a large and diverse public, at ten of the busiest TransLink stations in Metro Vancouver
An opportunity to sell recorded music
Artist profiling and promotion
Becoming a TransLink Busker
Join TransLink’s Busker Newsletter to receive the annual Call for Musicians each fall.
Selected applicants must:
Submit a clean Police Information Check*
Enter into a musician’s license agreement with TransLink
Attend the Annual Busker Orientation Meeting in December
Purchase a TransLink Busker License ($75.00 annual fee)*
To contact the busker program, email email@example.com
Art Moves is our new and exciting music and performance residency series bringing vibrancy to the transit system. The program features a diverse roster of local, world-class musicians and performance artists scheduled to appear throughout the year in various locations. Reflecting our region’s deep diversity, Art Moves showcases a line-up of multi-disciplinary talent that includes musicians, dancers, live painters, spoken word artists, magicians and more.
Visit our Art Moves program page to learn more about what it's like to perform on our transit system.
Aaron is an inspired musician who performs regularly in Vancouver. He sings and plays guitar in a wide variety of styles and genres. In his spare time he enjoys local music and travelling.
AJ Murarka has been sharing his music with TransLink riders with great joy for the past three years. He believes in the power of music and sharing it.
Alfredo Flores is a full time musician and has been participating in TransLink's Busker Program for more than 20 years.
Alfredo Mangherini is an Italian born, multi-instrumentalist experimenting with different styles of music. He is self-taught and takes from influences such as finger-style folk, psychedelic rock and Latin American rhythms. Alfredo intertwines sounds with world music to create distinctive melancholic yet hopeful ambient guitar music.
Andrei Diaconu is a classically trained singer/songwriter, composer and sound designer. When he's not producing or writing songs for himself or other artists, he's working at one of Vancouver's top radio stations producing commercials, voice-over, and jingles. He's a pretty big fan of chicken wings.
Being immersed in the arts all her life, Anita Tse's happy place is singing cheerful tunes and nostalgic classics with her ukulele. She primarily plays for friends and private events, and hopes to continue sharing her music to wider audiences. She is joining the Vancouver music scene this year as a first time busker with TransLink.
Anthony Blackman is a steeldrum player from the beautiful islands of Trinidad and Tobago. Forty years ago he brought this unique sound to Canada. Anthony plays a variety of genres of music and loves perfecting his craft.
Anushka Kashyap is a Vancouver based Pop/R&B singer with a background in dance. Armed with a powerful voice and a soulful sound, some of her biggest influences include Christina Aguilera, Michael Jackson, Jennifer Lopez and Joss Stone. She has released two singles “Don't” and “Move With Me”, and an EP on the theme of Love Languages.
Bassy Dave (Dave Marfleet) plays lead, rhythm and ground bass and is influenced by bass players such as Victor Wooten and Ray Brown. Coming from Revelstoke, Dave is currently studying Jazz at Capilano University. Audiences can expect to hear bluesy, jazzy, funky and groovy music.
CaJa East Coast meets West Coast in this fiery duo of Cary Grigg, Old Time/Metis fiddle champion who came up in BC's Interior and Cariboo region, and Janet Noade guitar/hand percussion/singer-songwriter from Nova Scotia. Irish, Celtic, French Acadian, Metis and Indigenous tunes and sounds blend with original compositions and covers of pop, ballads and ghost song-stories.
Singer and guitarist Charlie Mackenzie hails from Deep Cove. Over his 30 year musical career, he has busked as well as performed and recorded with many well known artists. Charlie finds great joy in playing for people as they go about their daily commutes and hopes to spread a little happiness.
Daniel Lew is a genre-bending artist who integrates powerhouse vocals, catchy guitar riffs, conscious rap flows, and soulful piano melodies. Lyrically, he focuses on themes of self-improvement with the aim that listeners will cultivate their own personal journey. He has self-produced two albums, Jiving Nomad (2020) and Satori (2022), and his third album, Surrender, is scheduled for release this November.
Denys Knchiev is a Ukrainian artist, musician, and balalaika performer who recently immigrated to Canada in connection with the Russian war. As a 3rd year music student he was accepted into the Kyiv Conservatory. He has competed and performed internationally in Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, and was the Laureate of Ukraine. Denis plays Ukrainian folk, classical, and improvisational music.
Digger Dan (Danny Sloan) is a guitarist, singer, and songwriter who combines Rock with Blues. Both dramatic and soft, his soulful vocals and strong songwriting help to drive new paths in well worn tradition.
East End Doug (James Ewanchook) was raised in the Trout Lake area of East Vancouver and sings and plays all popular styles with a focus on originals. He has toured nightclubs throughout Canada and the U.S. and serenaded the seven seas for all the main cruise lines. James is thrilled to join the TransLink roster of musicians.
Elliott Slinn is New Westminster's current Poet Laureate. He is a performer who takes listeners on a journey of the heart with his honest songwriting. With a unique style and an emphasis on the musicality of his lyrics, his storytelling and sonic signature weave together as one.
Emily Roskelley is a passionate and committed street performer from Vancouver. She began singing at a young age and has musical theatre training from Arts Umbrella, Vancouver Youth Theatre, Gateway Theatre and Stagecraft Children’s Theatre School, as well as classical vocal training. Emily began busking in 2010 and has since participated in numerous regional and national programs.
ENRICO WORLD MUSIC (Enrico D’Onofrio) brings diverse musical experience and a large repertoire of well-known standards. He is classically trained in accordion theory, and apprenticed under a well-known maestro who taught him to read and write music. Enrico’s performance experience includes hotels, cruise ships, corporate functions and stage performances with international entertainers.
Fei Mei Huang graduated from Tunghai University in piano performance and from Berklee College of Music in composition. She specializes in piano performance, composition, music theory and music history. Fei Mei has been participating in TransLink's Busker Program since 2004.
Gabriel Regehr is a 22-year old professional musician who plays the saxophone and piano. He won the Youth Talent Search BC and Close Look Got Talent, and was the runner-up of Tri-Cities Got Talent. Gabriel has worked and performed with local artists such as Quinn Pickering and Bukola Balogun. He performs regular solo shows throughout the lower mainland.
Garima Soni is a musician, photographer, and filmmaker living in Vancouver. Born and raised in India, she moved to Vancouver in 2020 to study film production at Infocus Film School. Garima sings jazz, soul, pop/rock, and Sufi music in English and Hindi.
Gregory Monty’s love of music began at an early age under the guidance of his parents. He has played bass guitar for 50's rocker Buddy Knox of Texas, and legendary Canadian Country artist Ian Tyson.
Haniel Hout has always had a passion for music with a special interest in percussion. In 2020, he got his first handpan which ignited a new passion for creating and sharing music that brings peace, joy, and harmony to the listener. Haniel is also passionate about helping beginners who are looking for guidance in getting started on their handpan journey.
Hojoong Jin (Ray) is a professional violinist from South Korea. He plays mostly classical music with some crossover genres.
Ilyas Ozkasgarli, a.k.a Classical Oz is a Uyghur Turk who grew up in Turkey. He started playing classical guitar at the age of 14, and plays Flamenco, instrumental, traditional Spanish, popular and old Latin music. He is currently expanding his repertoire to include R & B, Blues, Jazz and Country.
iveno (Iven Simonetti) is a multi-instrumentalist and recording artist. He plays electronic and acoustic instruments which he transforms into ambient music often mixed with relaxing nature sounds. iveno's performances includes meditative live music events played at mindful gatherings and therapeutic settings, electronica, ambient electronic music and hip hop.
Jennifer Hershman picked up the guitar and ukulele as an adult to grow and evolve as a singer, producer, and songwriter. Her songs take listeners on an emotional journey through desire, heartache, healing and joy, supported by an evocative layering of strings and a solid beat. Her career highlights include song recordings in two foreign languages, earning over a million streams on Spotify, lending her voice to a Wes Craven soundtrack, and touring with electronica group Balligomingo, signed to RCA out of New York.
Jim Meyer is a Vancouver-based composer and Chapman Stick player. He has performed internationally from Spain to Australia, playing original instrumental music from his two albums Arbutus and Jade, and Watercolour. Since 2010, he has performed year-round on Granville Island, and since 2020, has been a regular on the Water Street Café/2nd Floor Gastown performance stage.
Jirong Huang graduated from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. Since arriving to Vancouver, Jirong has performed for the Canadian Governor General Concert as an erhu soloist and showcased his talent across Canada and the U.S., including appearances on TV and CBC radio. As a founder of the Canadian Chinese Music Society and the artistic director of Vancouver Chinese Music Ensemble, he is dedicated to bridging western classical and contemporary music with Chinese instruments.
Johann is a musician and music therapist performing and working in Metro Vancouver. His main instrument is the handpan for street performing, weddings, private and corporate events.
John Chak, originally from Hong Kong, plays the soprano saxophone. He is a father of two, and enjoys playing for a public audience as part of TransLink's Busker Program.
Jonny Smook is originally from Alberta including the small towns of Tofield, Banff, and Canmore. He brings folksy upbeat music to the scene with a positive outlook, aiming to make others' days more enjoyable.
Joshua Friesen started playing the guitar and drums at a young age. He has busked in cities all over North America including New York, Nashville, DC, LA, Seattle and Montreal. Joshua is passionate about expressing emotion and story through music.
Kurtis Formosa is a Vancouver-based guitarist. His favourite genres include Blues, Funk, and Folk. You can find Kurtis playing around town at local bars and cafes with his band Bossa Etc.
Lautaro "Lew" Barbaric is a Canadian-Chilean musician dedicated mainly to street performance and composing. When busking, he usually sings classic songs accompanied by a charango: a small ten-string instrument from South America. As a composer he likes to contrast acoustic instruments with electronic ambiances.
Lenny Pallerstein is a Vancouver-based fingerstyle guitarist. He can be found playing around the lower mainland at hotels, restaurants, corporate events, and weddings. Lenny prides myself on delivering a great atmosphere with instrumental renditions of pop, R&B, and crowd favourites.
Vancouver-based indie folk-soul band, Likewise, sings about global change from the inside out. Likewise have played at Blessed Coast Festival and are popular performers at Vancouver Farmers’ Markets and Granville Island. From haunting cry “In the Dark” to upbeat anthem “Ageless Sun,” Likewise’s audiences experience sacred stillness and energizing groove.
Luke Edington is a singer/songwriter from a small town in Ontario. His songs, played on saxophone, are almost entirely improvised with the exception of a few main parts. He plays a wide variety of music ranging from Jazz and Blues to Rock and Roll.
Marcel Greer, a.k.a Maverick Rayne has been a professional busker for several years, both in Vancouver and in Edmonton. He has been playing guitar for over 20 years and plays instrumental rock.
Matthew Wise is a songwriter who hails from the oil fields of Alberta. His music incorporates cowboy chords and musings on the Prairies.
Melody Kruppa is a pianist who considers music a form of medicine. Her favorite part of busking is sharing stories with those who stop to chat.
Michael Deacon has been writing since he was 9, and has published a poem in a children's magazine. He now enjoys infusing his writing with music and performing with a wide variety of instruments. He sings in numerous languages and enjoys surprising people with his wide repertoire.
Mike Sullivan has been busking for 30 years. Playing the slide guitar in his unique style, he is known for singing ballads that make audiences cry and rythyms that inspire them to dance.
Nadim Woolgar (They/Them) is a queer Bolivian guitarist that explores the sounds and rythms of their beloved Latin America through classical guitar. Playing for 17 years, Nadim has learned from several Bolivian instructors in both electric and classical guitar techniques. They are currently studying under Hanh Nguyen at the Vancouver Academy of Music.
Natalyaa (Natasha Kozak) has been performing since the age of 8. She has a background in musical theatre, and after graduating from Sheridan College, started performing with wedding and cover bands. Natalyaa plays a wide range of acoustic and piano covers to which she adds her own spin. Her repertoire includes covers by artists such as Dua Lipa, Journey, Beyonce, Ed Sheeran, Britney Spears, Billie Eilish, Rihanna, and the Beetles, among many others.
Nathan Barret is a musician and actor based in Vancouver. Raised in a musical household by two local Jazz musicians, he picked up the trumpet when he was just 10 years old. Nathan has toured extensively throughout BC with bands like Blackberry Wood, and Small Town Artillery. He also toured across Canada with Old Soul Rebel, an official finalist on The Launch tv show.
Pat Axe (Pat Berthelotte) is a guitarist and singer/songwriter specializing in blues. He has been playing professionally since 1979, and started busking on Yonge Street in Toronto that same year. Pat Axe's repertoire includes a wide variety of blues folk and country with a selection of reggae and original songs.
Paul Neufeld is formally trained in classical guitar from the Capilano music program. His 30 years of playing experience includes his participation in TransLink’s Busker Program since 2007. Paul’s style is best described as easy listening, instrumental, solo guitar that draws influence from classical, rock, blues and jazz genres.
Music has opened many doors for Peter Stevens by allowing him to see the world. It has also assisted him through many difficult times and has served as a healing tool. Peter hopes that his music is an inspiration to his audiences.
PIOTR is thrilled to team up with Translink this year to continue his quest to elevate spaces with his music. While his compositions span many genres, they are tied together by his unique soulful voice. Whether a sombre ballad or upbeat pop anthem, this Polish-Canadian singer/songwriter delivers catchy melodies and clever lyrics that both provoke thought and evoke emotion.
Rachel Machetti is a passionate singer/songwriter from Montreal with a style of music along the lines of Indie Pop that's cute and at times a little raw. She started playing guitar at 23 years old and played in bars and cafés with her former band S.S.I, as well as just on her own. Now flying solo, she still composes songs and covers commercial pop songs that she influences with her own acoustic flavor.
Rene Hugo is a Peruvian - Canadian professional musician and music teacher. He holds a bachelor's degree in classical guitar and plays a multitude of Andean instruments such as pan flutes, string instruments, and drums. His accolades include representing Perú in the 1990 Children’s Festival in Canada and the United States with his group Ayllu, representing Canada in 2005 at Nanning International Festival in China with his group Rene Hugo Amigos, and being nominated as a cultural ambassador of Perú by the Peruvian consulate in Vancouver.
Ron Forbes Roberts is a classically trained guitarist playing original arrangements of music from many genres including pop, jazz and world music. He has been based in Vancouver since 2005 and has played countless gigs around the city in venues including the Hotel Vancouver, Van Dusen Gardens, Harrison Hot Springs, the Terminal Club and many more. He was also the house guitarist at the Empress Hotel in Victoria from 1995 to 2004.
Ross James Linton is a local singer/songwriter originally from Scotland. A proud Vancouverite for the past 9 years, his experience includes local busking, weddings, fundraising galas and open mics.
Ryan Fischer is a Toronto born, Canadian singer/songwriter, who released his debut album “Commercials For Heaven” in the fall of 2021. His songs mix self-deprecating humour with recurring themes of self-doubt and a longing for solace. As a celebration of his own and the world’s collective human flaws, music is Ryan Fischer’s way of coming to a place of jubilant acceptance and inner freedom.
Sam Chimes is a producer, entertainer, and DJ with two world tours under his belt. He makes instrumentals, raps, sings, and connects effectively with his audience with his undying message: "Live your dream, don't back down".
Slim Alley Jim (Jim Dewar) started playing guitar at age 14, and jamming with other musicians in his late teens. He has been participating in TransLink’s Busker Program since 2015.
As a part-time violinist, Steven Lin surrounds himself with music in much of his spare time. Classically trained since 2005, he began experimenting with electric violin and theremin in recent years. He is always on the lookout for new genres of music to adopt into his repertoire.
Terry Maple blends folky songwriting in the style of Joni Mitchell and Elton John, with a millennial lens of idealism and burnout. Songs explore intergenerational trauma, identity, colonialism, apocalypse-dread, addiction, and love. Terry is also a passionate songwriting coach/guitar & bass teacher/producer and hosts lessons in his studio, Maple Trail Studios.
That Saxophone Girl (Anessa Lang) has been rocking the sax like Lisa Simpson since the age of 10, playing all kinds of music in jazz, marching brass, reaggae and blues-garage bands, as well as wind symphonies. Anessa expanded her skills at the University of Victoria and since moving to Vancouver joined festival-touring band Blackberry Wood. She is grateful for the oppourtunity to make a living playing music and making people smile.
Blind and proud, Theo Blue puts his music before everything. From folk-pop covers to original instrumentals, his guitar is the instrument of choice.
Timothy Lambert has been a professional musician and actor his entire life. He has played saxophone and piano all over the world. Timothy has been participating in Translink's Busker Program for over 10 years.
Trevor Frankham has been playing saxophone for over twenty years and busking for 10. His sets consist of covers of recognizable songs ranging from classic rock to modern pop songs, with his own backing tracks that add a flavour of smooth jazz. He loves to perform in public and strives to brighten people’s days.
Trevor Stewart's regular transit and street performances include song and dance. He plays covers from international musicians from Belfast to Buenos Aires. Request a cover of anything from Paul Mccartney to John Lennon and chances are he might know it!
Troy Gilmore is a BC based musician and songwriter. He loves nothing more than writing, recording and performing music, and releases a new song every Sunday on his YouTube channel "SongMonkeyTroy". Troy can be found busking on transit and around Vancouver most days of the week, as well as playing with his band Chase The Bear.
Longtime busker and fiddle pro Emily Absalom has teamed up with local multi-instrumentalist Lindsey Mickey to form the small super group Two Trains. When not playing Bach songs on recorder or faithfully interpreting Celtic tunes, these two can be found jamming on anything from funky drum and bass improvs to fully electric psychedelic rock.