Will was inspired to start performing music in New York City subways, but with a twist — instead of playing for money, he told his listeners to leave money if they had it and to take it directly from his guitar case if they needed it.
He’s expanded this simple concept online during the pandemic, where he’s now able to help people in need from all around the world via live streaming his music and donating all proceeds.
Ep. 25 – Will Boyajian Show Highlights
2:21 – “So now we do two shows a day, two shows a day streaming. Instead of having the physical guitar case filled with coins and singles, we’ve opened it up now to to an online platform.”
3:56 – “Especially in a city like New York with with just maybe one of the greatest wealth disparities in the world, where the super rich and the super poor are physically crammed on top of each other, the fact that there is someone there who is drowning over five or ten dollars when a New Yorker five feet away from them will spend five or ten dollars on nothing…”
8:43 – “So I just did it, and I felt really good after I did it, which is not a feeling I feel that often, but I felt really good. I felt happy. I felt clean and I felt like I did something good. So I just kept doing it and it just kept working.”
16:22 – “I was limited by my environment, I was limited by having one guitar with me, playing songs in a noisy New York City subway, fighting against the trains, walking my stuff. So I wanted to find a way to make it more like a show, like a variety show. And it’s really developed.”
20:33 – “It’s a lot of heavy people who were not heavy a year ago. That’s the real difference.”
25:25 – “I don’t know if it needs to be a full time. What I want to happen – and it’s proving to be the most difficult piece of this puzzle – is to have more musicians playing.”
27:13 – “I’ve learned that people, when given the opportunity to do the right thing, they will do it. If if you set them up for an alley-oop, they’ll do it.”
38:33 – “It’s just not sustainable. …because when I go and try to get corporate backing sometimes, they’re like ‘what’s the model?’ And I’m like, ‘well, you give us money and then we give it away.’ And they’re like ‘in big chunks to organizations?’ And we go, ‘No! Painstakingly in small denominations to strangers who we do not vet at all.'”
41:40 – “And I hope I think what this pandemic will have done, besides cast so many of us into financial ruin, is realize the importance of social works and the importance of welfare programs.”
53:06 – “I would say just do it. You just got to do it. There was a quote I was told by someone that was so – you ever hear a really goofy quote, but it hits you at the right time and space? But they said, ‘hey, you can get paralysis from analysis.'”
55:14 – “The greatest currency in life is gratitude. When you’re dead, you’re dead, but you’re not so dead if you contributed something.”