You cannot deny the vibes at the Word Vomit Poets open mic. Each Tuesday, artists pile into Moca Lounge in Harlem and fill up the seating, bar stools and open mic list with an incredible amount of respect for the mic and each other. The hosts keep a tight check on timing, ensuring that the show moves along and the crowd stays entertained. For the few patrons in the crowd who aren’t artists, there are participation games interspersed throughout the evening.
The inspiration is so strong, the games spill into the week (ie: challenge to create a poem based around 10 word prompts) and continue to remind us of the great time we had, while calling us back. The poems/challenges are sometimes even posted on Instagram. During the show, poetry from artists unable to attend is read, allowing a wonderful opportunity to spread your message without having to raise your voice.
Performers at Moca Lounge are able to walk a runway-like stage which runs from the front of the stage to the back. While it is a bit challenging to see everyone (there’s only standing room sometimes) the extra long mic-cord encourages the artist to step into the crowd and stand on the same ground with the listeners. There are all kind of artists & performers at every level, it’s a great place to simply get out and make friends in the city, if you’re an artist. My favorite part of any show is always the vibes. To top it off, there’s no cover charge (👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾). As appropriate, you are asked to purchase 2 drinks to support Moca Lounge, a Black owned business in Harlem. Honestly, this is the best/most comfortable way to get my friends out the door; it’s tough to pay cover & food & drinks… sometimes, it’s genuinely the cost of a dinner to see and open mic 🙄 I suppose I should mention that the food and drinks at Moca Lounge are tasty & reasonably priced!
The Word Vomit Poets team does an amazing job of keeping people engaged. From promotion to the actual event, it’s an event you look forward to and never want to leave. On the nights I‘ve attended, there have been people there until after the last poet! The Word Vomit Poets team does a phenomenal job in connecting; they recently joined forces with soepiceveryonenotices for crisp photography everyone loves. It was literally my second time with the group and it’s impossible to ignore their passion and dedication. Their graphics & promotion are quality; it’s one thing to be a featured artist & another thing to feel like a featured artist.
I thoroughly enjoyed touching the stage. I was able to perform with TunisiaRenee for the first time & I think the ground responded really well. It was also my first feature set in a long while, so I had to get used to fitting this song in. Another tough part of preparation is remembering that the time you’re given on the mic also has to include your intro and any talking bits you’d like. What I learned on this night is that I can really do this forever ☺️ I was scared I wouldn’t have enough material or things to say to fill up the time, but I actually went over. (I still think they should have let me finish that last song 🙄💕🤣) but it was a phenomenal set nonetheless. I hadn’t felt a crowd rock with me like that in so long; I love a room full of artists, they can’t hide their emotions 🤗🤣🤣
Do you frequent open mics? Have any questions about how I book/plan/handle/troubleshoot my sets? Drop your questions below, I’d love to connect!!