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Open mic — Ye Olde Royal Oak (2)

Last week I wrote that I had performed at my first open mic, which was only partially correct. I’ve played at other open mics, but last week was my first in a bar, Ye Olde Royal Oak in San Jose, Calif. It’s got good sound if you keep it simple, and a great audience. I stopped by again this Sunday, playing eight songs.

1. With or Without You (U2)
2. All I Want is You (U2)
3. In God’s Country (U2)

4. Till He Comes Around (original)
5. Highways Heading Home (original)

6. I Still Miss Someone (Cash)
7. Folsom Prison Blues (Cash)
8. Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door (Dylan)

Commentary —

The first set went pretty well, but I butchered “In God’s Country,” despite thinking I was most prepared to play it. Sweet Lou, who hosts the open mic, warned everyone against “religion and politics,” but for the second set I played “Till He Comes Around,” about divine inspiration and songwriting. “Highways Heading Home” is about the prodigal, and hoping that when one comes back, someone is waiting. It’s a song that needs a lot of development. The last set was an exercise in making mistakes. I kept messing up the chords for “I Still Miss Someone” and my solo in “Folsom Prison Blues” failed utterly. “Knockin'” is always a good standby.

© 2009 – 2015, Mark Adams. All rights reserved.

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