Paris Open Mic Adventure Consolidated:
A micro trailer from the film: From the Paris segment of “Out of a Jam.”
A song from the album:
The Thumbnail Guide: Thumbnail Guide to Paris Open Mics, Jam Sessions and other Live Music
A link to a favorite blog item from the past: BOYCOTT THE PARIS POP IN BAR’S OPEN MIC – A STORY OF “TA GUEULE,” THE BAD BARTENDER
A favorite video: Johnny Borrell sings “Golden Touch” at my short-lived open mic brunch on Sunday afternoons at the Mecano bar in Paris:
An excerpt from the Book: from the Paris chapter of OUT OF A JAM: An Around-the-World Journey of Healing and Rebirth Through Music:
We took the Metro to the Hotel de Ville station. Emerging, we found a cool, already dark evening, with festivity in the air as people crammed the cafés, bars and restaurants the night before the public holiday. We walked along the Rue de Rivoli for a few blocks to the Rue du Bourg Tibourg. It was a narrow street in the Marais, with a square opening to the Rue de Rivoli. We walked its narrow sidewalk until we saw the floor-to-ceiling pane-glass façade of the Lizard Lounge on the right. The room was dark, with circular tables and a long curving bar. It had a hip, young crowd, as I had expected.
Seeing no evidence of it on the ground floor, I guessed the open mic must be in the basement. We took a curving, narrow staircase down a flight into a typical Parisian, vaulted, stonewall cellar with a low ceiling. I nearly hit my head on the arched brick over the staircase as I entered the room, and I simultaneously saw a musician talking to a man who looked like he might be the organizer of the evening, as they stood next to a microphone, and he was by far the elder of the two. There was no stage, just a mic and an amp located in what appeared to be the most logical spot of the room for the performance. Spectators from two parts of the L-shaped area could hear and see the musicians. As I entered, I heard the musician ask the man if he or anyone had a guitar pick. My response was immediate and instinctive: I reached into my pocket as I stepped down the stairs and I said, “I have one….” But as I did this, I also tripped down the stairs into the room, and almost fell to the floor in front of the microphone.
That was my entrance into a world that would change my life and my self-perception forever.