Though I’ve been playing guitar for nearly two years, I certainly wouldn’t call myself some sort of expert. I was lucky enough to have 3 roommates who loved to jam out and sing along while I practiced or take my guitar to the beach and hang out with everyone, both of which were SO much fun. That’s what it’s all about for me; THAT’S why I wanted to learn to play.
So when I heard about the Open Mic night on campus back in March, I jumped at the chance! I practiced pretty damn hard for two weeks and decided to play Therapy by All Time Low, because it’s one of my favorite songs ever and this band was basically my life in middle and high school. I also prepared a few other songs and decided to play Wonderwall by Oasis because it’s a fun jam that everyone knows and can sing along to. When I got to Gully’s where the open mic was, I was the first to sign up and thus, the first to perform. I liked it better that way so that I was able to get it over with, get rid of my nerves, and then enjoy the rest of the performers.
And let me tell you, I knew I would be nervous but I didn’t know I would be that nervous! Throughout my entire first song, the leg my guitar was resting on was shaking like a leaf! I was sure everyone could tell how nervous I was so after I was done, I joked that hopefully I could stop my leg from shaking for the second song. Luckily it worked and I definitely felt myself relaxing, though the whole experience still felt so surreal. My second song went well and, though I messed up a few chords towards the end, I was relieved to learn that you couldn’t tell and I took it all in stride. After finishing my “set,” I was able to introduce my best friend Meghan (and take some much-needed deep breaths).
After a few other performers (and a couple of beers), my roommates encouraged- aka peer pressured- me to go up and sing another song. Sweater Weather by The Neighbourhood is one song that I always have up my sleeve because the chords are so easy to remember so Meghan and I went up to sing it together and “wing the fuck out of it” as I so gracefully put it to our audience (since we hadn’t practiced at all or sung this song together in probably over a year). However, it was so much fun and I could totally feel that rush that performing gives and it was so awesome to sing alongside one of my best friends.
I was so thankful to have a bunch of my friends there to support and sing along with me. All the other performers were so fantastic and I had such a blast in a worry and judgement-free environment. Later, when my sister showed me the video recordings she took of my songs, I was so excited to see that you could not tell AT ALL how nervous I was. In fact, I looked quite confident and you could tell I was enjoying myself. That goes to show that sometimes it really is all in your head. I can’t wait to continue on my musical journey!