Night of the mic

Bendigo Weekly | Bendigo Weekly | 01-Nov-2013

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Musicians of all experience levels will have the chance to take to the stage at this year’s Bendigo Blues and Roots Music Festival, by getting involved in one of the many open mic night sessions being held across the weekend.
Guitar virtuoso Mike Elrington will be hosting his ever popular “Open Mic” session, this year at the Bendigo Beer Pop Up Bar, on Sunday, November 10 from 5pm.
Elrington, an open mic veteran of 15-plus years, said the trial by audience offered great opportunities for both young and experienced musicians.
“I think open mics are extremely important for the music scene because they give musicians a chance to get out of the bedroom and share their talents,” he said.
“They also give more experienced artists the chance to try out new material without the pressures of a normal three hour gig.”
For those that are relative newcomers to the stage, Mike has plenty of advice.
“Just be yourself and work on letting go of these nerves completely during your performance,” he said.
“An audience can always sense when a performer is nervous and this can often make them feel uncomfortable and also stop paying attention to the gig.
“And of course, you have to always have fun when you perform, otherwise I don’t think there’s much point.
“One thing I love about performing is that it brings out the inner child in me (not that I ever really grew up anyway). Kids just seem to have a little more fun in life where as us adults tend to take things too seriously most of the time.”
Spontaneous performances can lead to some once in a lifetime experiences too.
“I played a jam night at Buddy Guy’s Legends Blues Club in Chicago once. It was a quiet and cruisey Monday night and all of a sudden Shirley King (daughter of BB) showed up and I was fortunate enough to jam with her,” he said.
“It was a real pleasure to jam with someone of that calibre.
“Mighty voice indeed.”
Bendigo Blues and Roots Music Festival runs from November 7 to 10.
For more information check out the Bendigo Blues and Roots Festival official program inside this edition of the Bendigo Weekly. Or visit the festival website www.bendigobluesandroots.com.au

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