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  #16  
Old 01-24-2020, 04:55 PM
6L6 6L6 is offline
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Originally Posted by Mr. Jelly View Post
Honestly I'm seeing clubs or groups of different sorts dying out almost everywhere I look. Along with open mics there are American Snooker clubs, card leagues, pool leagues, dart leagues even soft ball leagues thinning out. Our boat club is slowly dying. There just aren't enough younger people getting into these types of things. By younger I mean anyone under fifty.
I think youíve nailed the problem.
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  #17  
Old 01-24-2020, 05:03 PM
Joe Beamish Joe Beamish is offline
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Maybe it's a San Francisco thing? I honestly don't know. Perhaps you have to be well established there to afford a life, and maybe the young people who now live there don't have the time or inclination to write and perform songs. Don't know.

I can see that happening here in Austin someday too, the way it's going.
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  #18  
Old 01-25-2020, 06:04 PM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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Most of the folks that come to my club, and others that I go to, are baby boomers. These are "folk" clubs or similar, where you pay for entrance so the orgaiser can pay for the room and, maybe for guests.
There are mainly acoustic focussed.

Open mics tend to be far more "amped up, and even have electrics and drums. Just too loud for old ears, but the kids don't realise that they'll be deaf when they are older.
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  #19  
Old 01-25-2020, 06:13 PM
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There are alot of open mics in my area. I 'm just not into it.Maybe ,if your crowd is older [like me], I would think of trying to start the open mic earlier. That is the main reason I don't go.I still get up for work at 5 AM. they all start at 7 and go up from there.
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  #20  
Old 01-25-2020, 06:33 PM
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It might help to tell people here what/where the venue is. There are a number of AGFers in the Bay Area (including me), who might come if we knew what OM you were talking about. Not sure most AGFers will significantly lower your average age, but if your goal is some fresh blood or better attendance, I wouldn't think age would be the biggest factor?
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  #21  
Old 01-25-2020, 06:53 PM
Brent Hahn Brent Hahn is offline
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Originally Posted by Silly Moustache View Post
Just too loud for old ears, but the kids don't realise that they'll be deaf when they are older.
Those darn kids.

I do tech work and mixing (both FOH and live-streaming) for a venue that has a fairly broad-minded Open Mic. This last Monday the youngest performer was 14, I think, and the oldest was 80. Besides the usual solo singing guitarists and pianists, there were a few duos and trios, a poet, a Robert-Plant-like rock singer who works with headphones to a track on a Walkman that only he can hear, and a 4-piece rock band at the very end. I love the variety, and nobody's going deaf.

Scott Memmer, aka Charmed Life Picks, did one of his really nice originals. Without a pick.
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  #22  
Old 01-26-2020, 08:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Jelly View Post
Honestly I'm seeing clubs or groups of different sorts dying out almost everywhere I look. Along with open mics there are American Snooker clubs, card leagues, pool leagues, dart leagues even soft ball leagues thinning out....
Huh. Interesting. I used to be big into darts. League play was big in SoCal, and there were quite a few big annual tournaments - L.A. Open, North American Open, etc., etc. I dropped out years ago. Couldn't make a living at it. But it was fun!

I was also in a slow-pitch softball league for a while. Also dropped out of that years ago. Things change!
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  #23  
Old 01-26-2020, 08:10 AM
zombywoof zombywoof is offline
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Bwahaha - we go to one held twice a month where the average age seems to be 80. At 68 I feel like a spring chicken.
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  #24  
Old 01-26-2020, 09:01 AM
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We have a venue that offers an open stage with drums, amps, guitars plus someone running a large P.A. I haven't been there in some time. People bring their own equipment at times. Bands show up and do their thing. Local musicians trade off instruments so it's a round robin affair sometimes. You just get yourself on stage and kick it off and they'll follow you. Or not. The music is mostly rock band stuff. And yes I have done some time there several years back. It's not all that interesting. It does have a younger crowed than what this thread has been talking about though.
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  #25  
Old 01-26-2020, 10:04 AM
lfoo6952 lfoo6952 is offline
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What about using social media to spread the word to bring in the younger crowd? Thatís how kids communicate these days. Iím not familiar with all the tools because Iím an old geezer myself but I do use Meetup to find people that share a common interest.
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  #26  
Old 01-26-2020, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Young View Post
It might help to tell people here what/where the venue is. There are a number of AGFers in the Bay Area (including me), who might come if we knew what OM you were talking about. Not sure most AGFers will significantly lower your average age, but if your goal is some fresh blood or better attendance, I wouldn't think age would be the biggest factor?
The venue is Cameron's Pub & Inn located in Half Moon Bay, CA. O/M is held every Thursday night starting at 7:00PM. 3 songs or 15 minutes, whichever comes first.
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  #27  
Old 01-26-2020, 10:37 AM
Irish Pennant Irish Pennant is offline
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I'm reluctantly getting older. The older I get the smaller my circle of friends get. Friendships drift apart as life happens and new friendships don't seem to be as easy to form for older folks.

To get off the couch and out of the house old folks do things like volunteer, return to church, join bowling leagues or go to open mics. Me, I started hiking to the top of mountains to old fire watch towers.

I don't know what the young folks are doing anymore, I don't know how to attract them to my open mic, when they do show I welcome them, encourage them and invite them back.

I've tried schlepping in a bass, cajon drum and electric guitar. It got old schlepping in a stage setup week after week for no discernible increase in performers.

I now just bring in quality gear that is acoustic guitar centric and try to make as good of a sound as I can.

My open mic is in a small town, on occasion there are nights when no players show and the pub is almost empty. I use it as a two hour practice session.
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  #28  
Old 01-26-2020, 10:46 AM
mcduffnw mcduffnw is offline
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Originally Posted by 6L6 View Post
The average age of players at our weekly Open Mic last night was 72 years old. Ages ranged from a "young" 62 to a "spry" 80 yrs old.

Me? Well, I hit the scales at 74 yrs old.

We've done a lot of things to try and attract younger players, but with little to no success. AND, we're losing fellow geezers who used to be regulars but don't want to come out and play anymore.

The good news is that most of us geezer players have been playing for decades and the level of music being played is very good.

The venue we play at is outstanding. Dedicated stage, great sound system, great food, great atmosphere... you couldn't ask for anything more. Starting time is 7:00PM and it's a 3 song or 15 minutes (whichever comes first) affair.

Those of us who still play this venue would LOVE to see new players come out who aren't carrying Medicare cards.

Appreciate any thoughts/ideas the AGF can offer.

Part of the problem with attracting more young people to open mic's is that their version of "popular music" is Rap, Hip Hop, EDM, and Party Pop...like Katy Perry, Arianna Grande, Bruno Mars...and those styles just do not readily lend themselves to the "folkie/country" sounds of the 50's, 60's 70's format of most open mic's. The one style of music super popular with younger folks that would lend itself to typical open mic format is Contemporary Christian...but...they get to do that their various worship services so they don't have as much need for an outside forum to play at.

Until "Top O The Charts" popular music styles swing back to the more guitar centric styles that we boomers grew up with...and it will eventually...I think the open mic issues you are having will kind of just stay with us.

Hopefully the swing back towards more guitar centric popular music will hurry up and get here...but ya just never know.


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  #29  
Old 01-26-2020, 11:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6L6 View Post
The venue is Cameron's Pub & Inn located in Half Moon Bay, CA. O/M is held every Thursday night starting at 7:00PM. 3 songs or 15 minutes, whichever comes first.
I "quote" this for two reasons. One, to repeat the venue and two, to emphasize what other's have said. A mid-week open mic that starts at 7pm and goes to...10 or 11 is not conducive for young working people who have to get to work at 7 or 8 a.m. I would start the event at 5-5:30 and close it down by 9. I know that doesn't satisfy the wants of the host location who wants free entertainment until midnight or later, but that's what it is. Maybe have the venue offer a mid-week paid gig for the winner of the OM to entice players who are actually looking to play for a living or avocation. Have a monthly "shoot-out" of the top 12 players for the month - top 3 from each week. The winner, or winners of the battle get paid gigs at the venue for every Wednesday for a month.

The issue I see with open mics is that many/most are tolerated by the venue for the purpose of players bringing in their 3-12 friends, filling up the place and getting patrons and free entertainment out of it while the players get very little in return. I think open mics mostly get two types of players. The up and coming local players looking for exposure and moving in to full-time playing (or at least profitable playing), and those you have already listed - the retired or retiring who don't need/want full-time gigs. Somewhere the event/venue needs to bridge the gap.
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  #30  
Old 01-26-2020, 01:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6L6 View Post
The venue is Cameron's Pub & Inn located in Half Moon Bay, CA. O/M is held every Thursday night starting at 7:00PM. 3 songs or 15 minutes, whichever comes first.
Ah, I've played Cameron's but never been to the Open Mic. It is a decent setup aside from all the TVs, if I recall.

HMB is actually incredibly hard to get to from "silicon valley" these days, the "short" drive across 92 can take forever, especially on a weeknight when you have to fight rush hour traffic. It's a major issue for everything like this in the Bay Area these days. I went to the grand reopening of the South Bay open mic - a bay area institution that's also having a bit of a hard time lately - a few weeks ago. 13 miles away, took me 15 minutes to get home later at night, 2 hours to get there... I suspect this is one reason you're not getting a younger crowd. Only retired people can manage to leave 2 hours ahead of time, when most people are still working, to get there and play a couple of songs. Moving it to earlier won't help, and starting later makes it too late for working people (and it'd have to be a lot later for traffic to have died down). A Sunday night slot might be better, but even weekends backups on 92 can be a problem. So I think you're limited to the population of those along Highway 1 there.
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