On Thursdays in Barrington, NJ, you can visit the Barrington Coffee House for their “Wide Open Mic”. The night begins at 8pm, but signups start at 7:30. The place is packed, so make sure to get there and sign up EARLY. The Barrington Coffee House is on 131 Clements Bridge Rd, Barrington, NJ 08007.
You might be asking yourself, “So why should I go out to Barrington for this event?”. Let me answer by saying that it was voted the best open mic in New Jersey by New Jersey Monthly. But don’t let me explain it, take it from NJ Monthly itself:
“If you want to perform at the Barrington Coffee House open mic, make sure you sign in right at 7:30 on Thursday night. The event, which runs from 8 to 10 pm, is always full. The cafe is small, so you’ll want to grab a seat early. But don’t let the size fool you; the Barrington Coffee House attracts quality local performers—and national acts on Friday and Saturday nights.”
So were they right? Yes. The Barrington Coffee House was fun, packed, and filled with some of the most talented musicians I’ve ever run into. The staff is friendly and the owner, Trif, runs the open mic smoothly. You can check out the Barrington Coffee House — Open Mic website
It really is packed. Get there early to get a good spot — seatwise and setwise. It’s a coffeehouse, but it also has a great sound system. Along with a great sound system (and arguably what makes a good system great) were people that knew how to use it. You don’t have to worry about your instrument being louder than your voice unless you specifically ask it to be so.
There were performers of all ages from all different genres. Everyone was incredible. It was impressive to be at an open mic that was as fun for the performer as it was for the audience member.
The coffee house also raises money through other events for multiple sclerosis. And it might be a personal bias, but I loved the art on the walls:
Overall, The Barrington Coffee House “Wide Open Mic” was exceptional. Expect to leave much later than the 10pm guestimate from the website, though; I finished around 11pm and left at 11:30pm. There is a written 6-minute policy, but each performer seemed to be allowed to sing 2 songs each.
If you have the chance, go to the Barrington Coffee House Wide Open Mic, and see for yourself what the best open mic in NJ is like.