Open Mic Smite, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! This has been my first thanksgiving ever in the states. My day consisted of having tea and cake for breakfast whilst watching the parade in New York on TV, then heading out to my step-aunt’s house for dinner, which was so good, and I say *tut tut* to anyone who says that American food isn’t good, ‘cos it’s GOOD.

Apart from food and giving thanks, a lot has been going on in my world! Firstly, I DID do the open mic night in NYC, and I SMOTE IT. Well, I mean, yeah, I did well, I thought. But there’s a whole lot more to the story, so I’ll start at the start.

So, last Thursday I headed into Manhattan all on my lonesome, to meet up with friends. I met with lovely Haley, who was dressed incredibly. I didn’t take any photos of her, godamnit, ‘cos she had to go to California the next day and so we really didn’t have much time together. But we went out to see Moomaw and Gravid Wives play, in Zebulon, in Brooklyn. That was fun, and plus, I got to see Miwa Gemini play with her band, and she was super, I really loved her music, and had a nice chat with her the night after, so hopefully will meet up with her next time I’m in NYC.

Anyway, so the next day, I headed into Manhattan from Brooklyn, to go to this open mic place. Actually, I had in mind to go to two nights, ‘cos these two that were on looked like they were quite close to eachother. Alas my grasp of geography in new york isn’t the tightest (?) and, no, 20 blocks is not a short walking distance. So, having checked out both venues the day before, I decided to just head to the closest one, which also seemed to be the friendliest, called ‘Lovin’ Life Learning Center’ (darn American spelling of centre).

So, I get there, and find that it is actually a youth learning centre. So, like, the average age was about 19. There were people also my age, and people twice my age, both performing and just being audience members, but most people were about 19. And they were all SO NICE. It was a big area, and when I sat down, before it all got started, 3 different people came up to chat to me, like, just to be nice. It was odd, cos all the kids were also quite ‘cool’, like, they weren’t nerdy at all, but they were also really open and lovely and friendly, it had such a nice vibe to it.

When I arrived I put my name down for the event, obviously. And they said I could only sing two songs, so that was a shame. But I was number 6 on the list, and damn near everyone that went on before me played 2 songs each (some played guitar, some sang a cappella, some sang to recorded music), so the lady that was organising it came up to me and asked if I could just do the one song, and maybe another later if there was time. I knew I wouldn’t stick around till the end, so I was a bit dissapointed with that, but hey, whatche gonna do. So i said yes, that was fine. Naturally.

Sooooo, my time comes and my “name” is called, that is to say, the presenter is like “See-ara, our next singer is See-ara, come on up”, and then she made some reference to Ciara, the hip hop singer who freakin’ ruined the pronunciation of my name for all time. Anyway, the presenter was nice, so I didn’t correct her, and just got up and did mah thing. Soooo, my uke was hooked up to an amp, and I had a microphone, and I sang ‘White Fluffy Clouds’ and riiiiight where there’s the change in the song, the electricity goes ‘Sha-ZAM’, or whatever noise is heard when electricity cuts out. Then everyone was like ‘keep going’, so I paused and kinda laughed and be-ed awkward, and then started singing again from the start of the change, and sang my little/big heart out, and actually really enjoyed myself, cos singing without a mic is a lot of fun, cos you don’t have to worry about volume being too high, you can just WAIL. I had a WAIL of a time, as it were. (see what I did there? Sharp as a rock.)

So yeaaaah, that was my open-mic experience, first ever! I was proud of myself, and shall certainly make a habit of going to open-mic nights, such a good way to perform frequently and improve constantly. Afterwards I went back out to Brooklyn to see my friends play again, and then headed back to JERSEEEY the day after. A great deal of fun was had by all, but mainly me.

And so, when I got back to my dad’s house, he informed me that he got talking to a fellow court videographer who also has a radio show once a month. So he spoke to this guy about ME and my quest, and the music dude gave him lots of good advice. The nicest thing to come of that was my dad saying to me ‘I’m starting to see things from your point of view now, and think you’re doing the right thing by really going for this, ‘cos I think you can actually make money from it’, or something to that effect. But the video guy also said ‘she needs to get something on a cd. Tell her to make something and send it to me, if I like it, I’ll play it’.

I’ve been wanting to record something for ages, and produce it myself, but can’t on my computer, but my dad has a mac, and I have a mic, and so over the next few days I’m gonna do a few lo-fi recordings. I’m excited about it. So, I’ll have those up and ready to show to people in about a week. And this will make it easier to get gigs also, as I can put up to date songs on my myspace.
Other happenings include meeting lots of other musicians, getting a show in Barcelona for when I’m back, and and and…just things moving along beautifully, generally! I’m excited! And overwhelmed, but mainly excited! Not that anything big and concrete has happened, but I feel that things are moving far more quickly right now, which is cool, cos just a week ago I was feeling down about thing moving slowly. Woo!

That is all, I believe.


One thought on “Open Mic Smite, and Happy Thanksgiving!

  1. Hi Ciara,

    Loved reading your story and glad that your spirits are up and that you are so focused. All very exciting! I loved your description of the open mic experience.

    Busy here working with Astrid translating some stuff from Norwegian to English. It also involved a lot of editing and rewrititng so can use all I have learnt on the editing course!! We work very well together, manage to enjoy it while alos meeting our deadlines. She says to say Hi and hopes to see you when you are in Oslo.

    Good luck working with dad on your cd. Hi to both him and Pat.

    Talk soon!

    Love you lots, Mam XX (big hugs from Ciany) BTW have you heard from Fi recently?

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