Clearly, I am doing my best to get around to the various open mics in the DC area. And it was high time that I came back to where my journey began (although it isn’t over by half). I attended the DC Cabaret Network monthly open mic tonight. I’m a member of DCCN, so I know and understand this open mic well. And I recommend it.
While I took my guitar and shared my original tunes tonight with the folks there, most of the people came to work on cover tunes and utilize the services of the marvelous accompanist that they had on hand for the evening – Mary Sugar. This group is very comfortable with people finding new things in old songs and taking new approaches to established classics. Want to do a Marilyn Manson tune to a swing beat? This is the place to do it. And these people are serious about learning how to communicate a song in the best way that fits the individual artist. Now THAT is something every singer/songwriter wants to be thinking about!
While it’s true that they weren’t necessarily prepared to have me plug into their board and fire away, they could have worked it out [especially if I had arrived early instead of late]. Still, we were in the foyer of the Atlas Arts Center where the acoustics are pretty darned “live.” So I had no problem playing unplugged. If I had brought my electric pickup and cables – which I didn’t – I have no doubt they could have easily accommodated me as they had a sound man there to handle things.
This open mic is not just for DC Cabaret Network members; it’s open to everyone. And it isn’t just for people who want to sing covers. So bring your original tunes and let ‘er rip. [Although you’ll need a chart if you want the accompanist to join in.] Or bring your favorite songs and let ‘er rip. There is a fee for this one, since they’re paying a sound guy and an accompanist. But if you are working on material and have a chart or the sheet music, you should definitely give this open mic a try. They are a tremendously open crowd, a great audience, and they hire good accompanists. The fee is $15 for DCCN members and $20 for non-members. The schedule is floating, so check the newletter at the beginning of each month posted on their website (click their logo below to visit them online).