Music at the Bolton Library

Did you know we host an open mike at the Bolton Library? Maybe you had heard there’s music at the library, but didn’t know what to expect? Let us explain a bit what we’re up to, and why you just might find this local, home-grown music scene is both a lot of fun and a great way to spend a few hours on a Tuesday night!

What is an open mike?

Many folks aren’t aware of open mikes and the role they play in the music world. On any given evening the folks who come to an open mike might include a professional musician trying out some new songs, artists who tour locally or regionally working on their performance skills, a new musician singing and playing in public for the first time, or a spoken word artist reading a story or poem that amazes you. Every night at an open mike holds some surprise, some moment that will never come again.

Are there many open mikes around here?

The greater Boston area has one of the most vibrant acoustic music scenes in the world. On any given night of the week there are open mikes happening. Some tend more toward poetry. Some are more folk and singer/songwriter, others have a driving beat of rock music, others focus on comedy. Each open mike develops its own character and community. There’s a great deal of overlap and those who go to open mikes enjoy catching up with friends and fellow musicians each time they go out.

Do I have to be really good?

Everyone has to start somewhere. It doesn’t matter if you’re young or old, just bought your first guitar or been playing for thirty years, wrote your first poem or your five thousandth. Many folks who come to open mikes have played and written for years, but never been in front of an audience. It’s always a bit scary sharing yourself with others. Will they like you? Will they enjoy your music, your writing? The open mikes are very supportive and provide room for all of us to grow.

So how does the Bolton Library Open Mike work?

Well, the first thing you should know is we actually don’t use microphones or a sound system. So maybe it really should be called an open stage, but there’s really no stage either. The program room at the library has great acoustics. Sign-ups start at 6:30PM, music at 7PM. Your hosts (that’s us!) start out the evening welcoming everyone then playing a few songs. Everyone on the list then plays one or two songs (depends on how many people sign up, usually it’s two). Once everyone has played, we put chairs in a circle and play together. Someone will lead a song and others will join in singing, playing or tapping their toes. Playing with others develops useful skills and is a lot of fun too!

Come join us!

So come on out to our open mike or one of the many others in the area. You’re sure to hear some music you like and meet neighbors and make new friends. All in all it’s not a bad way to spend a few hours.