AcoustiCafe takes place every Monday night at The Funhouse at Mr. Smalls. It is an free open mic night, and there is always a special guest host. Sometimes the host is reoccurring, but they try to bring in a variety of new hosts. The main goal of it is to give local musicians the opportunity to network and meet new people. It is a great way to share your music in a supportive environment.
AcoustiCafe has been around for over 15 years, but it was always held at different venues. It was originally founded by Mark Willson, but was handed over to Jesse Prentiss in the last few years. Last spring, in April of 2016, the Funhouse at Mr. Smalls became AcoustiCafe’s new home. Jesse Prentiss, the organizer of AcoustiCafe and all the Funhouse shows said, “I started coming to AC at Club Cafe in late 2009 with my friend Pete Bush, and we’d play a song or two while we waited for our drummer to be available for band rehearsals. I got to really love the community atmosphere and all of the super-talented performers, so I ended up more and more involved in the organization, helping to run events at the Three Rivers Arts Festival, First Night festivities, Beatles Tribute Benefit Concerts, etc. Eventually, Mark Willson handed over booking the weekly hosts to me, and I continued that up until (and after) we moved over to the Funhouse this past April.”
AcoustiCafe begins at 6:00 pm, and is open to 18+ until 7:00, then it is only 21+ for the rest of the evening (7:15-11:00 pm). The 18+ group is set up at the Satellite Stage in the Great Hall, and the 21+ group and host is all over on the Funhouse Stage. “There are 10 minute (2 song) slots throughout the night, with a few reserved spots for comics and spoken word artists, as well as for new performers. At 9 the host performs a 15 minute set and introduces the featured act for the week (often a touring artist looking to meet Pittsburgh music fans), then from 10 til 11ish there are 5 minute sets to try to get everyone left on the list on stage” says Jesse Prentiss.
If you’re a local Pittsburgh musician who is looking to network with other musicians, or just have fun on Monday night, come on out to The Funhouse at Mr. Smalls for AcoustiCafe!