January 22, 2015

Nitty Gritty Slam #86, January 20

“State of the Union” speech or poetry? — uhm? It was the night of the Bad Song Lyrics Slam so it was an easy choice. First there was a brief open mic, hosted by Kevin Peterson, who read a poem by Tony Hoagland, “I Have News for You.” Josh Ryan followed with string of jokes that earned him a string of heckling.

Jen performed a slam-style piece on the theme of “this ain’t no love poem…” Stephen R. read a poem in silly rhyme titled “Day 7” about being in class at the College of St. Rose. Scott also did a poem in bad rhymes, this titled “My Resume,” about being fired & over-qualified. Mari read a poem about sleep & a bird, “Do Not Disturb.” Dennin read a long poem in long-line meter & rhyme ballad form what might be called “a forgotten poem about a dead guy.”

Mary Panza, vice-president of AlbanyPoets took over to host the Slam, & Nick had to adjust the mic stand (I think she just wanted to be on stage with him). It was a varied playlist of readers & songs, including Brian Dorn (“Blinded by the Light”), Jimmy did well with “Mickey,” Ringo, Shannon, K.P. (“I Whip my Hair”) in a knit cap, Tim (“You’re So Vain”), Samson, & me (The Ramones’ “I Don’t Want to Walk Around with You”). & the judges were wide ranging with their scores as well.
Tim, Jimmy & Me

But I scored high enough (28.0) to get into the final round, with Tim (who did one of my favorite songs, Melanie’s “I Got a Brand New Pair of Roller Skates”), Jimmy, K.P. (“Pussy Monster”). I did a song from 1972 by Harry Nilsson “You’re Breakin’ My Heart.”

That put Tim in 3rd place & me & Jimmy battling it out in a squeaker for #1, & his “Achy Breaky Heart” was a good choice but no match for me doing “Eat the Rich.” Now this night doesn’t count towards points for the Slam team but it sure gets me some primo bragging rights. Oh yeah!

Nitty Gritty Slam takes place on the 1st & 3rd Tuesday of each month, 7:30PM at The Low Beat on Central Ave. in Albany, NY, $5 (cheaper with a student ID) -- open mic if you don't want to Slam (or even if you do).

(Photo of the winners by Mary Panza)

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