All it took was one cover of Hank Williams’ “Lovesick Blues” for 11-year-old Mason Ramsey to become forever known as viral sensation the Walmart yodeling kid. The fame earned him a record deal, an appearance on Ellen, and most recently, a chance to sing the National Anthem at this year’s CMA Fest in Nashville.
But not every musician that steps into Walmart is destined for such greatness. Some actually just get kicked out of the store. At least that’s what happened to folk punk artist Brett Newski, who was recently booted from a Milwaukee Walmart after trying to film a live performance.
Since launching his career in the late 2000s, Newski has become known for playing all over the world. He’s done extensive tours in Southeast Asia, South Africa, Europe, and just last fall, the US while opening for fellow Wisconsin natives Violent Femmes. Despite his international mileage, it was his own local Walmart that turned him away, as the Milwaukee Record reports.
“It is a sad day for rock n roll. I have officially become the first documented indie artist to be kicked out of Wal-Mart for playing an unlicensed show,” Newski wrote on his personal blog. In video footage of the performance, Newski and his drummer can be seen playing some of their original music in the store’s pharmacy and produce sections. However, it took just three minutes for Walmart employees to shut it all down and show them the door. “Sorry guys, we gotta run a business here,” one of the workers says.
Maybe come back with “Lovesick Blues”? Or a Johnny Cash cover?
Check out the clip below. Head here for Newski’s full blog post. He’s gearing up to release a new album titled Life Upside Down on September 7th.