Prominent Novocastrian singer songer writer, Spencer Scott will host Newcastle’s newest open mic night, at the Hamilton Station Hotel. We chatted to Spencer ahead of the first night on the 17th of August about the fortnightly event and his vision of giving location an open platform for musicians of all skill levels to perform live on stage in front of a crowd.
This is the first open mic you’ve hosted. What’s your plan, are you going traditional open mic, or will you be mixing it up a bit?
Spencer: I think we’re going to start out pretty traditional, but then open it up to different things. It’s my first time hosting and organizing something like this. The first night is just solo & duo acts, but I’m hoping to bring in groups and bands in the future, and even expanding that for anyone who thinks they have something they can bring to see stage. We will see where it goes.
What do you think artists can get out of performing at an open mic night?
Spencer: I think having a stage and a pressure-free environment can be a huge help, whether you’re just starting out or you have a new song/cover that you want to test, it can be a good place to try it out. When I first started I was playing a lot of shows with The Loft Youth Venue, but when I turned 18 I had no idea how to get into the music scene of pubs. An Open Mic night was the first chance I had to play in a licensed venue, and it helped me get better a performing, get my music out there, and meet people around town. It was a great platform for me to improve, get more confident, and find other shows to play.
If you want to give it a go, what’s the process of signing up?
Spencer: It’s pretty easy! We’ve set up a Facebook page called ‘Open Mic at The Hamo’. Just head over there, like the page, and send us a message! We will sort out a spot for you and you’ll be on stage before you know it. The url is www.facebook.com/HamoOpenMic
Do you have any tips for people who may not have performed at an open mic but want to give it a go?
Spencer: One of the best tips I can give is to just be prepared. The more prepared you are the less you will be stressed out about the little things, and the more fun you can have. Knowing what time your set is, knowing what songs you’re going to play, and making sure all your equipment is working are all small things, but it will make your whole performance go much smoother! Oh, and having a fun cover is always an added bonus.
What do you need to bring along if you want to jump up?
Spencer: Just you and your instrument of choice! The Hamilton Station Hotel has a full PA system so there is no need to worry about all the stuff you need to bring. Just your guitar/keyboard is fine (maybe an amp if you’re playing electric guitar?), and we will plug you in and make you sound great!
WHAT: Hamo Station Open Mic
WHEN: Fortnightly from Aug 17 (Check our gig guides)
WHERE: Hamilton Station Hotel
MORE INFO: facebook.com/HamoOpenMic