(From Wikipedia: An open mic (or open mike) is a live show where audience members may perform at the microphone. Usually, the performers sign up in advance for a time slot with the host or master of ceremonies. These events are typically focused on performance arts like poetry and the spoken word, music, and comedy.)
Monday night, I gave up my open mic slot at Red Rock Coffee in Mountain View, CA to four older ladies who sang and played guitar. They had come in from out of town, how could I NOT give them my slot? The host said that was nice of me, the ladies were sweet and told me about another open mic location they did. Cool, another place for me to perform! Ooo, I am such a good person!
At open mics, I do spoken word. I read from my stories, sometimes accompanied by music off my iPad. Open mics have a lot of musicians: Casey Wickstrom is one. He is most excellent. Check out his music on YouTube (like Blues Song #666)!!! Then buy it!!!!!! I got two of his albums!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Over my many years at open micing, I have seen that the audience is polite to comedians, but comedians are lucky to get more than a couple of laughs. Except for last Monday, where a comedian WOWED the crowd! He started with a fart joke (when you hold it in, where does it go?). From there, the laughs got better and better. He was black and from Panama, and asked us if we’d peg him as hispanic. He dissed Walmart, always a good joke in my book, always! (I shoulda got his card so I can plug him here.) Off stage, he wore a hat like the kid in Adventure Time. He was a tall guy with a shaved head. The cap made him look, well, more like a kid. An incredibly big kid.
Over my open mic years, I too have gotten laughs. But my biggest hits have been the sad chapters with a funny punchline. That’s what I’ll be reading next week at Red Rock.