Tonight's Famous First Words was looking pretty unmanageable from a promoter's point of view around 7.45 when it was clear no less than 17 acts were there to perform, with one of which promised 20 minutes for music. It was time to get started.
And so we did and that's when I remembered why I love running open mic as well as curated gigs. A regular attendee at Clash of Tight-Tens walked up to do her debut poetry reading, several comedians with gigs in low single figures either forgot their material or finished about two minutes earlier than they thought they had, an experienced hand berated the audience for apathy, another read the assembled better and got respectable laughs, in the second half two acts teamed up and improv'd eight minutes, two of which were spent showcasing a drunk guy they'd met in the bar playing Imagine on the chronically out of tune piano, a pregnant woman acted out jackhammer sex and I managed to write some impressively poor rhyming couplets for every act to hang the whole thing off. The music was good too.
Was it 'Live at the Apollo'? No. Was it better than staying in on a Monday night though. Absolutely.
And I wrapped it up by 10pm with a 10 minute break in the middle.
(Pictured: Steve Hili)