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Open Mic Review - Bar Freda in Ridgewood

A four piece band plays at the Bar Freda open mic

801 Seneca Ave.

Queens, NY

Mondays @ 8

Food: No

Bar: Yes

In a word: Pro

Format: 1-2 songs, 1-2 poems, usually 5 minutes max

Get there early. Like an hour early. This mic is always packed and the line starts forming at about 7:15 even though the list isn't put out until 7:30. If you want to do promotion, this is the place to do it, but you need to get there early to get a good spot.

The Underground Open Mic is held in the basement of Bar Freda which features a full drum kit, a house keyboard, and one of the MCs' acoustic guitars, as well as an assortment of amps. Their sound guy, Mike, does a wonderful job and seems to hate every minute of it. Be sure to thank him.

The mic is run by Adamegan of I'm Not Holden Caulfield fame and Miles from Road to Ruin. They do pass around a bucket, so make sure you have some cash ready.

Because the list is usually so long, things move pretty fast. Even if you get number 30 on the list (yes, they really go that long), you'll still probably get on stage before midnight. They do have a 15 minute break after the first 10 acts for "drinks and legal drugs," but it doesn't really slow anything down and you get a chance to talk to people.

Because the venue is seated theater style, you get a very attentive audience. But for the most part, the audience are other musicians (and the occasional comedian or poet), and their stuff is usually pretty polished. Don't expect sympathy applause if you have a bad set. There are a lot of people to go through, and no one wants their time wasted watching a poorly practiced act.


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