menu

‘TipBombing’ Showers Unsuspecting Street Musicians with Cash, Compliments

culture

The cultural movement takes New York’s subway performers by surprise with a huge collective tip

Vashti Hallissey
  • 29 july 2014

A lot of the best musicians aren’t in the charts or on the X Factor, they are on city streets and subways playing for a just a hatful of change every day. A new concept by BBH aims to show street performers how much they mean to people by surprising them with hundreds of tips. Known as TipBombing, it involves gathering a big crowd around subway musicians who think they are taking part in a music documentary, and astonishing them with an enormous collective tip.

William Yu of BBH tells PSFK:

TipBombing started with the members of our team agreeing that something as simple as compliment can completely brighten someone’s day. We then asked ourselves, ‘How would someone feel if they were given a hundred compliments at the exact same time?’ We wanted to explore this phenomenon.

TipBombing is the brainchild of BBH New York’s Barn program, the innovative team that created Underheard in NY. The BBH team wanted to pay homage to the city’s street musicians, who often work round the clock for a few coins and a love of music.

Yu explains:

Being in the city, we are surrounded by amazing musical talents that play on the streets and in the subway, but New Yorkers are always so busy that it’s hard to take a step back and really appreciate some great tunes. In creating our idea, our biggest goal was to show some appreciation for these individuals who contribute so much to the culture and vibe of New York City.

The first musician to be ‘TipBombed’ was Robert Leslie, a young singer/songwriter from the UK who is a familiar face on the city’s subway system where he regularly performs. A coordinated group of people formed a crowd around Leslie and, at the designated signal, began to drop dollars into his case.

As you can see in the video, as Leslie continues to play, people put more and more dollars in his case. He is overwhelmed as he stops to receive a massive round of applause and the tips keep on coming, as well as the encores.

The feel-good factor applies to both the performer and the crowd, Yu tells us:

We want everyone to take away a feeling of happiness and appreciation. There’s something powerful about doing something in a large group, and the spark one feels on a personal level in supporting another individual. Most importantly, TipBombing is about the busker knowing that we all believe that what they do is amazing and that their talent deserves to be recognized.

Cities can sometimes feel cold and anonymous, as street performers know only too well. This endeavour lets people share a moment together to make someone happy and say thank you.

Yu would like to people take TipBombing to other cities:

We would love for other people to copy the idea in other cities. While we’ve tried to organize large groups to surprise these musicians, the truth is that TipBombing can be done with 5, 10, any number of people really. Just grab a friend, choose a busker, and let them know how great they are!

BBH is recruiting people for the next TipBombing which will take place on Wednesday, July 30, 8:30pm at Times Square. The team will be gathering at the A/C/E/1/2/3 subway station entrance at 42nd Street and 7th Avenue.

TipBombing

culture
Trending

Brand Engagement At The Gates Of The World's Largest Open-Air Gallery

Culture
Asia Yesterday

Safe Drivers Rewarded In Japan With Free Coffee

Driving Barista is a new app that encourages Japanese motorists to put their phones down as they drive

Arts & Culture Yesterday

Michael Kors Has Designed Their Own Instant Camera

In a partnership with Fuji, the limited edition Instax Mini 70 comes in an exclusive metallic gold color

Trending

Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Health Yesterday

Manage Your Emotional Health Through Your Phone

Pharmaceutical company Pfizer has created a new iOS app meant to help patients track mental progress and set goals

Food Yesterday

Delete Food Pics Off Of Instagram To Feed The Hungry

Land O'Lakes and Feeding America are donating meals for every picture of a meal taken off of the social platform

Design & Architecture Yesterday

This Shape-Shifting Pod Could Be The Future Of The Cubicle

MIT and Google have designed a new form of work enclosure meant to offer privacy in open-office layouts

Advertising Yesterday

Billboard Spies On People As They Walk By

To promote the movie "Snowden," the advertisement broadcasts information on passersby without their knowledge

Fashion Yesterday

Anti-Pollution Scarf Helps Cyclists Ride Through Cities

An innovative system filters pollutants and its accompanying app monitors quality of the air

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry
NEW

PSFK Op-Ed september 26, 2016

Why Building Better Offices Is The Key To Employee Engagement

Interaction Designer and Audio-visual Technologist at ESI Design illustrates the value in creating environments filled with surprise and delight

PSFK Labs Yesterday

New Mentorship Ecosystems Benefit All Levels Of An Organization

PSFK’s Future of Work report explores how technology is being leveraged to support cross-team communication

Automotive Yesterday

Volvo’s Self-Driving Trucks Will Soon Be Put To Work In An Underground Mine

The fully-automated vehicles are part of a development project to help improve safety for workers

Op-Ed Yesterday

Energy Expert: How American Consumers Are Taking Control Of Their Power Use

Jennifer Tuohy, green tech expert at The Home Depot, discusses green home technologies and developments for renewable technologies in US homes

Work Yesterday

Editorial Roundtable: How Will Companies Staff The Workplace Of The Future?

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary, AltSchool and thinkPARALLAX examine the ways that a people-first workplace might disrupt the job hiring process

Arts & Culture Yesterday

Mischievous Drone Will Drop Paint-Filled Balloons On Targets Of Your Choosing

A German photography team developed the flying device to accurately deliver a payload wherever needed

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders
NEW

Fashion Yesterday

100 Backpacks Made For The World’s Top Influencers

Heineken and TUMI have collaborated on a unique custom NYC-inspired bag

Financial Services Yesterday

This Peer-To-Peer Insurance Company Is Powered By Bots

Lemonade is a new product designed to lighten the paperwork and provide instant, helpful service when needed

No search results found.