Coffee Collaborative hosted their first Open Mic Night last Tuesday, July 26 from 9 – 10:30 p.m.
Jenna-Rose Hannah, a 2011 graduate and political science major, organized the event after there was discussion of bringing back the old tradition. The Open Mic Night invited students to perform or attend with a cup of coffee; performances varied from poetry to rap to original songs and covers.
Hannah said the motivation to organize the event stemmed from a belief in the importance of featuring talented individuals.
“We had an open mic night previously at Coffee Collaborative with the old owner and there was a lot of talk about bringing it back,” Hannah said. “I think it’s a great event because it is important to showcase local talent. I sing myself and thought it would be cool to get other performers involved as well and give them a medium to perform.”
Fourth year philosophy major Ben Boyce performed a mash-up, an original song called “Takes One to Know One,” and “Let’s Get it On” by Marvin Gaye on the guitar; according to Boyce, there’s a need for outlets like the Open Mic Night.
“I think it’s great, we need more of it,” Boyce said. “It’d be cool if they had more amps so more instruments and singers could perform at once but I did prefer it to Gio’s open mic nights – those got a bit crazy. Coffee Collaborative had a great atmosphere, I will be performing again tonight and intend to continue with it.”
According to Heather Kesner, an undeclared second year, who performed Day Glo by Brazos on a ukulele, the future of Coffee Collaborative is promising.
“The first one was great, a lot of our co-workers and regular customers performed and got into it,” Kesner said. “We have a lot more talent here than I expected. It’s nice to have a regular Open Mic Night in Isla Vista because it provides a fun alternative to typical IV nightlife. Coffee Collaborative was originally Java Jones and just again switched owners and staff a month ago. I think the Open Mic Night will be able to help the business get going again.”
The second Coffee Collaborative Open Mic Night will be tonight, August 2, with plans on making it a weekly, sustainable tradition.
According to Hannah, she hopes the event can live on after she leaves the university.
“I’ll only be here two more months finishing up classes. I organized the event and currently MC it. Hopefully someone will take my place to make this event a tradition. I hope it continues to attract more performers and attendees.”