I absolutely hate to admit writing yet again about the Paris open mics of the Tennesse Bar and the Galway Pub, my usual Monday night haunts when not in an airplane or another country. But last night, yet again, the two venues did not let me down, especially at the Tennessee bar where I met up with a group I know and love, and with a singer from a group I do not know, but who knows someone I know…. Let me just try to untangle that:
Got to the Tennessee early and waited hours to get up. Got to play FIVE songs! Loved it.
But the real fun would come later. First, a group from Philadelphia, led by the Philadelphia singer songwriter Mia Johnson. I enjoyed their stuff, with Mia singing and playing guitar, a guy on piano and another woman on guitar. They played cover songs, but then Mia came back later to do her own songs, and they were very strong. It was an interesting mixture of country and folk, and when I spoke to Mia afterwards I was not at all surprised to hear that she also played in a Johnny Cash cover band and that she sang the parts and played the role of June Carter.
But as soon as I heard her music and that she was from Philadelphia, I immediately said to myself, “She MUST know EJ, Pierce and Maggie,” or whatever order those names are supposed to be in. I met the brothers from Philadelphia last year in Oxford when I played several open mics, and found them at both the Half Moon pub and at Bookbinder’s Pub. This year again I met up with one of the brothers at Bookbinders.
So I went to speak to Mia and told her I had met some musicians from Philadelphia, EJ… and she finished the phrase. She has known them since 1995, she said.
No surprise, small world, cool meeting.
I did my five songs later and then went over to the Galway and did another four songs, listened to Bernard steal one I planned to do, “A Change is Gonna Come,” and then I went back to the Tennessee. There I found one of my favorite young groups in Paris, Black Butterfly. I had not heard them for several months in an open mic, and they told me they were mostly in the studio working on some recordings. Can’t wait till they come out. Also, Kareem played some very cool stuff on the guitar as usual…..