Best Open Mic Nights

September 8, 2011 9:00 AM

Photo Credit: Guy Malone via

By Vanessa Willoughby

Want to see if you’ve got what it takes to make a dent in the music industry? Connecticut offers a variety of bars that feature open mic nights for the budding singing star or starlet. Swallow your pride and head to one of the following bars below. Who knows? Maybe you’ll become a local celebrity!
guy malone sullys pub3 Best Open Mic Nights

Photo Credit: Guy Malone via

Sully’s Pub
2071 Park Street
Hartford, CT 06106
(860) 231-8881
Hours: Mon to Fri – 4 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Sat to Sun – 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Reviews, Directions & More Info:

A slightly small, dimly-lit bar teeming with booze and lacking food doesn’t exactly sound like the most encouraging place for a credible open mic night, but Sully’s Pub seems to be a diamond in the rough. Locals love Sully’s for its commitment to live music. Sunday through Tuesday evenings feature electric, acoustic, and freestyle open-mic nights, while the remainder of the week hosts well-established local bands. In addition to open mic night, Sully’s offers karaoke nights with a professional set-up.

screen shot 2011 03 09 at 11 09 28 am Best Open Mic Nights

Photo Credit: Issac Young Quartet

Stella Blues
204 Crown Street
New Haven, CT 06510
(203) 752-9764
Hours: Sun to Thurs – 3 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Fri to Sat – 3 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Voted this year’s Best of New Haven by the Advocate’s Readers’ Poll, Stella Blues features an open mic night every Tuesday , hosted by the Adam Seth. Sign-ups begin at 8 p.m. and singers are required to bring their songs, gear, and any other necessary equipment or items. Each open mic slot is 15 minutes or 3 songs- whichever comes first. Stella provides a full backline with a PA, drum kit, guitar amp, and bass rig. Guitar and bass are not provided. Despite the low-key atmosphere, Stella’s is anything but a dingy dive-bar.

homeimage Best Open Mic Nights

Photo Credit: Acoustic Café

Acoustic Café
2926 Fairfield Avenue
Bridgeport, CT 06605
(203) 335-3655
Hours: Opens one hour before the advertised showtime and closes at 1 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, and at 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
Closed Sundays and Mondays

With its small café tables, dim lighting, funky wall art, and intimate vibe, Acoustic Café seems to have taken a page out of Greenwich Village. Acoustic Café is proud to present a variety of musical styles, from alternative to zydeco. Admission price into Acoustic Café depends on the performing artist; this information can be found on the website’s calendar page.

sisrylive Best Open Mic Nights

Photo Credit: Main Pub and Restaurant

The Main Pub and Restaurant
306 Main Street
Manchester, CT 06040
(860) 647-1551
Hours: Mon to Thurs & Sun – 11 a.m. to 1 a.m., Fri to Sat – 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.
Reviews, Directions & More Info:

Originally founded in June of 1980, the Main Pub and Restaurant offers fine dining complete with an old English atmosphere with a plentiful beer selection, full bar, Hi-Def big screen televisions, and live entertainment. Every Wednesday starting at 9 p.m., the Main Pub hosts open mic, which is open to all artists, whether you decide to play originals, covers, or instrumental arrangements. Additionally, the Pub hosts a feature segment where local or touring bands get a 30 minute slot to perform.

os 1 Best Open Mic Nights

Photo Credit: The Outer Space

The Outer Space
295 Treadwell Street
Hamden, CT 06514
(203) 288-6400
Hours: Tues to Thurs – 5 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Fri – 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Sat 6 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Sun 6 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Located in a separate building from the renowned “The Space,” The Outer Space is a 21+ café, listening room, and lounge. Conceptualized by Steve Rodgers, The Outer Space is a 1920s style bar room that serves over 25 varieties of top shelf and local beers, in addition to fine wines. Open mic nights are held every Wednesday. Think of it as the more sophisticated, older, yet still fun-loving sister of The Space.

tn 480 dsc 0022 jpg Best Open Mic Nights

Photo Credit: Kelly’s New Haven

Kelly’s Restaurant
196 Crown Street
New Haven, CT 06510
(203) 776-1111
Hours: Sun – 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Mon to Thurs – 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Fri to Sat – 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m.

Located on the corner of Crown and Temple Streets in downtown New Haven, Kelly’s Restaurant and Bar is a great source of entertainment on warm summer nights. Thursdays mark open mic night while Fridays feature live music. Additionally, Tuesdays feature acoustic open mic night, which begins at 8:30 p.m. until closing. Feeling a little famished after your debut performance? Be sure to check out the menu, as locals are as much of fans of the food as they are the drinks!

Vanessa Willoughby lives in Waterford. A recent graduate of The New School’s MFA program, she also blogs for the entertainment and music website,

More From CBS Connecticut

Watch CBSN Live
CBS Entertainment

Listen Live