Find Your Muse Open Mic with featured artist Alison Self

Find Your Muse Open Mic

Find Your Muse Open Mic is Charlotte's premier open mic night. Each week we feature a special guest performer from around the region. Come out and see some of the area's best up & coming talent perform their latest original tunes. Always a fun time, hosted by the semi-hilarious Mr. Erik Button. Look forward to the start of a great Monday night at 7:30pm as you are greeted by the rest of our FYM team; Aaaaron at the door, Donniebaseball behind the bar serving up cold ones, and Normal Dennis doing his best at making it all sound great from behind the board. Sign ups are at 7:45, so come out and get your time slot. Participate in The "Bad-Ass" of the Week, and maybe win a $20 gift card.

Alison Self

Alison Self, based out of Richmond VA, plays and sings old timey music of different varieties on the ukulele and these days, can often be seen with a guitar. Alison performs solo and also in several rotating duet projects: Carter family inspired old time country outfit, Sweet Fern, with Josh Bearman of The Hot Seats, hokum jump with Brownbird Rudy Relic and acoustic blues with harmonica player Andrew Alli.

Alison was born and raised in Petersburg, VA in a family that was pretty void of musical talent, minus her mother occasionally singing to her in the morning to get her out of bed for school. Other than that, Alison isn't aware of any musicians in her family, but swears that she has been singing since she learned to talk. As an only child growing up in a rural area, Alison had a lot of time on her hands and spent a lot of time listening to early influences such as Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Judy Garland and Alanis Morisette on the radio and imitating them. When asked if she ever had musical training, she recalls getting kicked out of chorus in 4th grade for talking too much.

Alison graduated high school in 2005, still singing, and impulsively picked up the ukulele later that year. She was beginning to dive deeper into roots music and was growing impatient waiting for people to start musical projects with. She figured if she wanted to perform that she was going to have to learn an instrument and roll with it. Alison spent a year playing alone in her bedroom and with friends, and sometimes mustered the courage to drive to Richmond and busk on Cary street. About a year after that, Alison moved to Richmond and started meeting other musicians in the local music circuit. Since that time Alison has become a common name on flyers in Richmond, often playing DIY house shows and more popular venues such as Gallery 5, as well as being played on the local independent radio stations.

Alison traveled to NYC in the summer of 2006 and met up with NYC's holler blues purveyor, Brownbird Rudy Relic. Within a few days they wrote and recorded a 3 song EP entitled "I Already Got You" which was later released on Reltone Records, under the name "Gail Ruby and The Sheik" They went on to play multiple shows together, and have gotten to do short tours with a few other musicians. They still meet up to play occasionally and have future plans to tour and record more.

In April 2009 Alison and Pittsburgh, PA based roots musician Elliott Sussman went on a month long tour. They booked the tour themselves and traveled by buses, a plane, and a rental car. A few weeks before leaving Alison realized she didn't have a CD to sell on tour, so she borrowed her room mates hand held digital recorder and spent 4 days recording tracks in her bedroom. What came out was the only CD Alison has recorded so far, entitled, "Self-Titled" with 11 unedited tracks. Later that year, Alison joined forces with two friends to form the band Arise! Sweet Donkey, a 3 piece female band that focused around the roots music genre with 3 part harmonies. The group recorded a CD later that year but due to busy schedules, has not toured yet.

Alison has high hopes to record a more professional CD in the near future and to go on tour again. She continues to play solo shows in Richmond, often sharing the stage with up and coming acts, as well as collaborating with other local musicians to experiment with side projects.



Upcoming Events
The Evening Muse