Singer-Songwriter Cirkel Haarlem: Open Mic Night V – The Competition

The fifth Open Mic Night of the Singer Songerwriter cirkel Haarlem (SCH) in café Briljant had a competitive edge on September 6, 2016. The best participant was offered a time slot to perform at the Briljant Singer Songwriter Festival III (BSSF III) on Saturday September 10.

Dear John opened the evening. He presented an excellent musical business card and raised the bar to the ceiling. This didn’t wipe out the competition as he was already booked for the BSSF III. Ryan Ferris was the second musician to take the stage. Anouk Slik, one of the driving forces behind the SCH, heard him play in the city center in the afternoon and invited him to the Open Mic Night. Ryan is from New Zealand and is touring Europe. He wasn’t available on Saturday and didn’t lower the bar an inch during his performance. It was an international evening. The Moody Orchestra is born and raised in Germany and is currently living in Amsterdam.  He sang sad songs and a happy one to bring back the balance. That was not needed as he is a great entertainer and you won’t leave his performance feeling depressed. Fons Stam sang about how awesome he is, divorce and relationships in a way anyone can relate to. The viewpoint he choose in his songs make the stories hilarious. Gwan Brandhorst is always present at the SCH Open Mic Nights. This time he challenged himself by borrowing Anouks guitar which is completely different than his own. He got it under control and it went well. The next two Open Mic Nights will be interesting as Anouk gave him a big challenge… Talking about Anouks guitar… it was used by multiple musicians today. As Anouk presented the evening she didn’t have time to play. Tes recently wrote her first song in Dutch and shared it with an audience for the first time. It is a sad song about love in its final stages and I liked it very much. Thijs Launspach joined her for a couple of songs. Michael Salmagne took us to a place with much more sunshine than we are used to in The Netherlands. It didn’t require a lot of imagination how nice that would be as Café Briljant felt like highnoon under the African sun. He recently did a song writing workshop at the Patronaat and was linked to Iris Stubbendiek. They performed the song which they wrote together. Rob Alphenaar had not played at the Open Mic Night in his own bar. He had not played for a year. He had to give it a try. He also put a few extra miles on Anouks guitar. Besides a bit of lyricsloss and chordrust he could still play.

The most important question of the evening was answered after a short discussion between Anouk, Thijs Launspach and Rob, the organizers of the BSSF III. Fons Stam is the lucky one and I am sure he will entertain the crowd Saturday afternoon.

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