The Painted Lady, at 218 Ossington, hosts an open mic night every Monday which allows local musicians to come and present to fellow musicians, artists and community members. As part of the original vision of the bar to build community, Nicky, Jess and the team at The Lady have been doing this, with various hosts emceeing the night, since they opened. Some nights the audience is only a couple people and other Mondays the house is full. The night can end up going in many directions from the odd and eclectic to full-on jam sessions with lots of people together. They have had nights where well known musicians, including members of the Barenaked Ladies, have sat in or joined other amateur musicians on the stage. The range of performances is broad – from standard guitar playing singer songwriters to beatbox singers and rappers to comedians, and from individuals to full bands.
The deal is, if you want to play, then you come and sign in with the emcee that night. The emcee chooses performers on a first-come first-served basis. Each musician (or other type of performance artist or band) is encouraged to play originals (although there are still quite a few covers that get played), and they play three songs on stage. The crowd during the performances is very respectful and encouraging to everyone that comes on stage.
Last Monday night, we took some video of some of the players to give you a sampling of a show. Some of the players included Dave Pepper; David Heddy, a standup comic regular; Bruce Donahy, a guitar repair tech who works at Long and McQuade and played a Gene Autry Santa Fe classic guitar; Brendan Clark, who focused on his own originals, and many, many more.
If you are a musician or like watching musicians in the making or just people who make it their hobby to learn, head over to 218 Ossington on a Monday night starting at 9pm. It’s a fun night and helps build our community, both musically and socially.