Main definitions of busk in English

: busk1busk2

busk1

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • 1 Play music or otherwise perform for voluntary donations in the street or in subways.

    ‘the group began by busking on Philadelphia sidewalks’
    ‘busking was a real means of living’
    • ‘Anton came over to him when he was busking for the new orphanage that he is intending to build in Kenya, and promised his support to the project.’
    • ‘Shoppers couldn't believe their eyes when they spotted a world-famous band busking in a Manchester street.’
    • ‘There was a South American band busking, the type with the pan pipes, flutes and drums.’
    • ‘Musicians of all kinds were busking and selling their music on CD, also there were live puppet shows.’
    • ‘If you want free music go down to the street corner and listen to the man busking for loose change.’
    • ‘At 19 he moved to London where he developed his idiosyncratic style while busking in the London Underground.’
    • ‘I have sung it in schools, at conferences, even busking.’
    • ‘Now in the business for over 13 years, Kíla have come a long way since they started busking on the streets.’
    • ‘I'll probably make more money busking if I take him along with me.’
    • ‘In fact, they stand to make less than they would busking on the street.’
    • ‘Some songs were written while in high school; some were written while busking on the streets of Seattle.’
    • ‘There was the coin throwing, maybe meant as a donation to my busking I think.’
    • ‘Apparently he busked on Grafton Street with his African hand-drum!’
    • ‘Soon after her return she saw a group of street musicians busking in the Latin Quarter.’
    • ‘Marc has become as much a part of city centre landscape as the cathedral after 18 years busking on the streets.’
    • ‘Mr Robinson said he had been horrified to watch the Boxing Day disaster unfold and was desperate to raise money from busking as he could not afford to give any cash himself.’
    • ‘Before his career took off he did several odd jobs to pay the rent - busking on London's underground and peeling potatoes in a fish and chip shop.’
    • ‘The pair often went out busking in various towns, individually and together, but soon realised it was when they played together that the crowds built up.’
    • ‘Three months ago he was unemployed, busking on the mean streets of Glasgow and Edinburgh to scrape together a living.’
    • ‘But he is just as likely to be spotted busking on a Senegalese street corner.’
    1. 1.1busk itinformal Improvise.
      • ‘Goldsmith's opinion has the look and feel of a very clever lawyer busking it, with the best help he can get from some other non-authoritative lawyers.’
      • ‘I ended up busking it because he was that desperate to do it.’
      • ‘The dice tells us to write a song and busk it in public the following day.’
      • ‘What seems to me disturbing is that they appear not really to have considered how to go about government at all before actually taking power, and have been busking it like their kickbacks depended on it.’
      • ‘I think we'll set off for France and just busk it.’
      • ‘‘Basically the Prime Minister had to busk it because he wasn't sure what different parts of the Government were saying,’ said another.’
      • ‘It was more I was fed up with busking it, which you are not really allowed to say if you are a doctor.’
      • ‘Mary Lou's new album finds her back on the tracks busking and belting.’
      • ‘It was to march into situations with nothing more than your bus fare home, and busk it.’
      • ‘He busks it for a few seconds and then apologises for having to refer to his notes, written on a small, folded piece of paper, which he is holding.’

Origin

Mid 17th century: from obsolete French busquer seek from Italian buscare or Spanish buscar, of Germanic origin. Originally in nautical use in the sense cruise about, tack the term later meant go around selling hence go around performing (mid 19th century).

Pronunciation:

busk

/bəsk/

Main definitions of busk in English

: busk1busk2

busk2

noun

historical
  • A stay or stiffening strip for a corset.

    • ‘These busks are flexible and create a smooth curved front to the corset whilst providing very firm structure and closure.’
    • ‘A corset busk consists of two long pieces of steel, one with steel knobs and the other one steel loops/eyes.’
    • ‘I run a small cottage industry in Edinburgh, Scotland, hand making corset bones and corset busks.’

Origin

Late 16th century: from French busc, from Italian busco splinter (related to French bûche log), of Germanic origin.

Pronunciation:

busk

/bəsk/