As a songwriter, there’s nothing more important than putting yourself out there and getting your music heard. It can be daunting at first, but a great way to try out new songs in a live setting or get your band gig-ready before booking your own shows is performing at an open mic night. Even if you’re just looking to hear some new music or meet some like-minded, creative people the city of Dublin has lots to offer! In no particular order, here are five local open mic events to hit up if you’re looking for a supportive atmosphere and a fun night out…
On Monday nights, you have the chance to serenade an attentive room in the intimate surroundings of Sin É on Ormond Quay. A popular music venue, Sin É has live music every night of the week, so be sure to check out their other listings too.
In the heart of the city centre is The International Bar on Wicklow Street. They host The Circle Sessions every week and you can enjoy lots of different mediums of performance, from spoken word to storytelling, and an eclectic music showcase. Once you’ve mastered the open mic scene and you’re planning your own shows, they also have gig rooms available for hire.
If a traditional open mic isn’t really your thing, check out the weekly Jazz Jam at The Grand Social on Liffey Street. Bear in mind, you’ll need some knowledge of jazz improvisation and your own gear before you jump up to play and join in the fun. If you’re not planning to play, people are more than welcome to go and just listen. Even if you’re not a fan of jazz, it’s still well worth a visit to learn about an exciting genre.
Another chance to showcase your music is at the Apollo Sessions in The Bleeding Horse Pub on Camden Street. The event is a singer-songwriter showcase and takes place every Sunday night from 9pm. It’s good news if you’re on a budget too, as admission is free!
Last, but most certainly not least, Whelan’s on Wexford Street host their own open mic in the form of Whelan’s Song Cycle. Local and out of town acts are encouraged to take part, experiment and showcase their material in the upstairs venue, and you can contact them for a slot on the weekly line-up. There’s always a show on at Whelan’s, so have a look at their listings and check out some great music!