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The Ramblin' Mike

Molly MaGuire's
by Michael Guthrie

On the fringes of Ballard not far from Phinney Ridge lies Molly MaGuire's, a small Irish pub, nestled in an old established business community at 610 NW 65th Street, between 8th and 3rd Avenues NW. Here you will find a bowl of Irish Stew or; a pint of Guinness, pulled in slow motion. On Monday nights you will also find open mic "Diva" Linda Lee, hosting her new open mic.
Linda Lee is a veteran of hosting open mics, as shown by her many years at the Dubliner and Mulleady's. She is all about community spirit and encourages players to back each other up. A small drum set, keyboard, bass and guitar (a backline set-up) are provided. Linda has a large cirlcle of musicians who have played her open mics, I'm sure they will be dropping by from time to time. I have played in some fun jams with Linda at the Dubliner and Mulleady's. Linda plays everything on the stage and will play with you if you want.
Some musicians however, want to play solo and that's OK too. You can do your 15 min. set with just you and your guitar or sax or just about anything you want. You will hear all styles there; Traditional, Folk, Blues, Rock, Country, Hawiian, Jazz etc.
Molly Maguires, is a cozy space, with a pool table in the back room. This is a good place to have supper and a glass of wine or a stout. Neighbors hang out in this community oriented pub and enjoy the music while they socialize along side the long, wooden bar with stools scattered up and down it's length. The bartenders and wait staff make you feel right at home and they have some good food with a full bar. Did I mention the Irish Stew yet!
This is music serving a purpose, being part of the community, where everyone has access to the music and the music has access to them. A place where musicians can try out new ideas with new musicians they have just met. You might meet your next band mate there. From what I have seen, Linda fosters this kind of spirit where ever she goes., bringing musicians together.
She regularly supports other open mics and is an accomplished musician with and endless repertoire, crossing over and over the genre spectrum. When you think of open mics in Seattle, you think of Linda Lee. She is part of the fabric of this network of creativity. She is a big part of the reason why we have open mics, we owe our thanks to her and people like her. I remember the time, shortly after Johnny Cash passed away, she came into O'Shea's Pub dressed like Johnny and did a tribute to him, playing his songs, with Ricky Herrin on bass. One year John Weiss had a special Halloween open mic, by invitation and Linda came dressed in witch attire, singing scary songs! Linda gives the open mic community character and adds some sparkle to it.
Molly's has a small well lit stage with a sound system. Being a small room you don't have to be very loud there. This is an intamate room where you can make good contact with your audience, they're right in front of you. The room has a good sound, ideal for the folk singer or a scaled down band. Sign up at 6:00 PM every Monday, 610 NE 65th Street, Ballard, 206 789-9643
Open mic news:
For all you Lake Forest Park / Victory open mic fans it's sad news. The open mic has been terminated by the management of the commons, due to demand for the space. The 19th of Dec. is the last one which; by the time you read this, will be history. Hats off to Ed Zindcavage for running the open mic there, we will talk more with Ed soon. Also thanks to Allen Camhi for taking over Ed's job there these last few months.
There is talk of perhaps two new ones; in Everett and at Alderwood Mall. Well the scence keeps churniing over and over.
The Ugly Mug open mic, in Renton, is now every 2nd and last Friday of the month. "Why don't they just do it every Friday" (nuge nuge). Thom Thornsberry Smith will be there to greet you!
And last but not least, the Victory open mic at Crossroads Mall in Bellevue will change from Wednesday to Thursday night, after the new year. This is a great open mic with great sound by Bob Conger. The food court has all kinds of really good food and people come on a regular basis to hear the music. You will see a lot of amazing talent there as well as some beginners. It's a family atmosphere!
"Ramblin' Mike" wishes you all a happy holiday season and all the best in the New Year! Play lots of music! Have a happy open mic season! Be inspired! Be inspirational! And remember what Frank Rupert wrote in Dune, "fear, is the mind killer"
Michael Guthrie is a singer/songwriter who regularly plays venues in the NW. and is a Victory Music sound volunteer. He has produced his own CD and ran his own coffee house/cafe, The Village Green Cafe in Kaslo, BC. '73-'79.
He studied sound engineering and recording at : Sound Master Recording Studios in North Hollywood, CA '87 contact: moorafa@mindspring.com www.moorafa.com







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