Folk music is alive and well in what Chestnut Hill residents consider a special venue.
The Mermaid Inn, built in 1734, embodies the area’s characteristics: art, history and acceptance. A collection of musicians, known as the Bothy Club, meets monthly at the Mermaid Inn to host an Open Mic Night.
One of the Inn’s most seasoned guitarists, Ray Duffy, believes the Inn has a unique charm.
“[It’s] a real special place for people who like to listen to great music and for people who like to play music,” Duffy said.
At Bothy Club’s Open Mic Night, the audience can hear folk, blues, polka, rock and even gospel hymns from the eclectic group of musicians. The audience seems to love and respect it, as well.
“Some [performers] are great, some not so great, but everyone gets to play,” said Duffy. “The people who come here just love music.”
Mike McNichol, the host and organizer of the club, said his favorite part is returning performers.
“The coolest thing is when someone comes in from twenty-five years ago and just starts playing,” said McNichol. “The nights are very informal and very fun.”
The building may be old and dim, but the spirits are fresh and bright. The Bothy Club will be hosting their next Open Mic Night on Tuesday, October 8.