|2017 Update: Tongue & Groove is now at VAE Gallery on second Sundays. Still awesome. Just in a different place and on a new cadence.|
As an open mic tourist, I’ve been to a fair number of events that are all about bringing local poets and musicians out to share what we spend so much time writing.
I’ve seen it done all kinds of ways. Seen how a strong host creates energy and smooths over awkward moments. How the guy working the mix board makes the players sound better. How the layout of the venue—coffee shop, bar, library, whatever—can work for you or against you.
Recently, I drew on all this “have poem, will travel” research to create, along with a couple fellow open mic lovers, our own event—which we call Tongue & Groove. Two months in, we look to be gaining momentum.
I could write about how we picked the place, figured out a schedule we can sustain, and how the format seems to be evolving. But what’s more interesting, you ask me, is how even a short list of performers can make a good show and a great night.
Already, we are lucky to have a handful of regulars—more poets than musicians so far. I look forward to their voices every time, to hearing what they’ve worked up recently or what they decided to pull from their archives.
If you’d like to hear them too, join us any first or third Tuesday at Tir Na Nog Irish Pub in Raleigh, NC. We’ll be there.