It doesn’t get any rootsier than this. At least in this case, the city in question is Seattle, and these particular bums are serving up a heaping helping of unvarnished Americana. Ball Pollen, the washboardiste, is playing a pail-sized board à l‘américaine–I can’t tell what he’s using as scrapers–and contributing spirited backing vocals. The outfits they’re wearing are amazing, but you get the distinct impression that they’re not costumes; this is what they wear in the course of their “urban camping” (which, as guitarist Katy Gillivan is quick to point out, is not a euphemism for homelessness).
UPDATE: Reader katy g reveals that Ball Pollen is using lighters as washboard scrapers. If so, he’s a braver man than I am. Thanks for the info, katy g!