I’m just a hobbyist when it comes to playing guitar, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t like performing in front of an audience from time to time. For amateur musicians like myself, often the best venue for satisfying our thirst for public performance is a local open mike. Luckily, New England is full of them.
Over the years I’ve played at several open mikes in New Hampshire and Massachusetts, including Keene, Mt. Vernon, Nashua, and Troy (in New Hampshire), and Fitchburg, Waltham, Westford and Westminster (in Massachusetts). Open mikes are a wonderful way to enjoy an inexpensive evening out with live entertainment, and if a particular performer isn’t quite your cup of tea, no worries–he’ll be replaced in a few minutes by someone else!
The granddaddy of all Boston area open mikes is on Tuesday nights at Club Passim, located near Harvard Square in Cambridge. Originally called Club 47, Club Passim has been an integral part of the Boston acoustic music scene for fifty years. But Club Passim is really just the tip of the iceberg. My favorite resource for New England open mikes is a web page maintained by Sam Bayer, located here on his website.