All the components of a proper Open Mic Night were to be found in the Erasmus Pavilion Monday night as the performers jammed, the crowd jived, and most importantly, the beer flowed.
The latter part being pivotal, especially if you want to enjoy an emotionally charged acoustic cover of ‘Wicked Game’ or a Bob Dylan-esque version of ‘I’m Sexy and I Know It’. Some humdrum covers are expected anytime the stage is open to anyone, but it wouldn’t be an open-mic night without some technical difficulties.
A musician by the name of Matthew was the unfortunate one who had his performance cut short due to a faulty guitar, prompting the entertainer to quickly switch acts. As they say, the show must go on.
“Anyone have a good joke?” he uttered, as a sea of faces stared back at him. “Alright, I guess I’ll tell a joke and then someone has to come up and tell the next one.”
In admirable fashion, Matthew delayed the delivery of his joke long enough for someone to bring him a new guitar to play the rest of his song with.
“I thought I would come up with a joke, but absolutely nothing came up,” he would later admit. “I just tried to stay cool, you know. All well, shit happens.”
That indeed Matthew, but what doesn’t happen often on these nights is what one audience member called an “open-mic three-peat”, where one guitarist plays a triplet of songs without a mention of the word “encore”. As the third song came to a close, some students started to become aware of the fact that the following day was Tuesday and started putting on their coats.
Possessed by Jimi
One of those heading to the door was Sedale Wijngaarde, a Masters student who stopped dead in his tracks when he heard a powerful, voracious voice suddenly fill the air to the chords of “All Along the Watchtower” by the one and only Jimi Hendrix. In complete contrast to the monochromatic MC who announced his name, the musician known as Noah belted the words with unrelenting grit, as if he were possessed by the legendary guitarist himself.
“I was just about to walk out the door when Jimi walked up on stage,” Wijngaarde said with a grin. “He really killed it up there.”
In a city where techno reigns supreme, it was a pleasure to listen to some familiar faces play some familiar numbers on good-old fashioned instruments, no matter if they were in tune or not. The packed house was certainly loving it, but then again, who doesn’t love a pint on a Monday night meant for studying.