Brad Spurgeon's Blog

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After seeing the success and usefulness of my “Thumbnail Guide to Paris Open Mics, Jam Sessions and other Live Music,” I decided in 2013 to create a thumbnail guide to open mics in each of the cities where I travel for my job as a journalist writing about Formula One. I travel to, or visit, 20 countries a year in that job, and I take my guitar with me and seek out open mics and open jam sessions to play in, and sometimes music venues just to listen to music.

Over the four years I have been doing that – 2013 is the fifth year – built up a list of contacts and addresses, and I decided to share that list, in the same way as I decided to share the Paris list. Paris being my home, it will remain the most up-to-date list. But I thought this worldwide guide would be worth the effort, and trial.

I decided to make each page a selection of the open mics I have been to, but also a list of links that can act as a resource for searching for open mics and jam sessions in those cities. These are the links I have used myself to find places. In most case, those links will be more exhaustive and more up-to-date than my own list. But as far as I see it, when you are looking for an open mic or open jam session, any lead you can find is worth it.

I will be creating this list in 2013 as I travel from country to country and continent to continent, so if you have found this page in 2013 and see that the list is far from 20 or so countries, that is because in 2013 it is a work-in-progress.

I would also like anyone who wishes to update a country’s listing to please send me the information in a comment on the post, and I will happily incorporate it in the relevant guide.

Happy playing, and happy travels.


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  3. Hey Brad,
    do you know of any Open Mics in or around Annecy?

    • Hi Lisa, no, sorry, I don’t know any there at all! I’ve only been there once in my life. And actually, the only cities in France where I know of open mics are Paris and Nice….

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  6. Hi brad,

    Do you know of any open mics in barcelona? I have a song called barcelona and I’m visiting the city next week and would live to play it there.

    Thank you


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  8. Hey Brad your blog is incredible! Thank you so much for it….I’m doing a big three month tour and would love to know if you have any info on…
    India – Mumbai, Dehli, Goa

    I know it’s a big list and it’s a little ridiculous to ask but I have very much been enjoying the resources of your blog and thought heck why not put it out there.

    Again thank you very much for all your work!!!!!

    Piper Hayes

  9. Oh man I absolutely will and if you come to Toronto I can get you all the open mics there as that’s where I am from!!! Much appreciated.

    Thank you again…you’re doing awesome work.

    • Ah! Like me! Actually I DO know some in Toronto, but it has been a few years since I was there, so I dare not make a list for there. And my first open mics ever included Fat Albert’s when it was still in a church basement….

  10. I’ve not actually been to that one hahah that sounds awesome!!!!!! Oh and I’m currently in Halifax and doing a bunch here so if ya come here I can send you where I went!!!!

    • Ok, thanks. I’m just listening to your songs now on your web site, and it’s great stuff. I’m actually based in Paris, France, so if you pass through here, let me know. My list for open mics is best for Paris, since I live here.

  11. Oh REALLY! Thanks so much. That’s amazing of you. And actually I will be passing through Paris and I did go through your list of Paris and contacted a few venues. I will be thru Paris Jan 8th and 9th!!! That’s actually how I found your blog.

  12. Hello Brad! I just found your site and I wanted to thank you for listing all of these wonderful open mics! I’m traveling to Paris in October and will be excited to check some of them out. Also , I noticed you have a Barcelona listing…did I miss one for Madrid? Thanks again! Alison Marae (

    • Hi Alison, thanks for your message. I’m always delighted to hear back from people that the lists are helping. No, you missed nothing from me from Madrid! I have no ideas for Madrid, having never played there…. But I can only imagine it must have quite a bit available! Search “micro abierto” in addition to “open mic” and “Madrid” and you might widen your chances, although I didn’t check….

    • I lived next to Madrid for a few years, haven’t been back in about 2 years, but this is what I remember.
      Most of the places are into open mics where you have to subscribe weeks ahead and 5 musicians play 3-4 songs each (like in Búho Real, a temple for spanish singer-songwriters). I played there in several occasions, great sound and nice silent atmosphere in a veery cozy bar. It runs on mondays, musicians didn’t get a drink nor pay in any kind…
      I played once in ‘Café La Palma’, that was nice. A real (high) stage so that everybody can see you, great lights, enough place for everybody… Musicians get a drink and if I remember properly, there were several english speakers over there. Good music that day, would have loved going back, just 2 hours of public transport to get back home -with a keyboard!- doesn’t make it very appealing… You sign up when you arrive (there’s quite some musicians, so make sure you come early), you get 1 drink and it could move to a jam session, there’s good communication between musicians, even though it’s really run as an open mic.
      ‘Libertad 8’ is supposed to host an open mic as well, but it seemed like the only way to contact them is going there, I couldn’t find out when it was, what type of music (though acoustic, I think), which instruments they have… Nothing. But it seems to be running still (google says).
      A quick search on google gives me some other places where I’ve never been: La Fídula, Fulanita De Tal, Honky Tonk, Café Barbieri, El Sótano… Up to you to check them out! 😉
      Hope this helps and that you enjoy it :).

      • Thanks very much for that! I’ll see if I can somehow incorporate it somehow outside this comment. Too bad I don’t have a Madrid open mics page – having only the Barcelona one. But this is valuable information.

      • Wow thanks Varzu! I already went but am planning on returning because I loved it so much! xo Alison

  13. hello Brad from TangMan American guitarist / songwriter-
    do you have any info on open mics in PRAGUE, Czech Republic ?
    and in BUDAPEST Hungary?
    i will also be going to Paris and using your open mic guide for there

  14. Happened upon your site and love it – wanted to send you a message if thanks

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