Mattapoisett’s got talent: open mic night brings out musicians

Jan 20, 2023

MATTAPOISETT — The lights in the Mattapoisett Museum burned a little later on Friday, Jan. 20. as the pews of the church-turned-museum filled with area music lovers for a monthly open mic night. 

Held on the third Friday of each month, the Mattapoisett Museum’s open mic night invites anyone who can sing, play music or otherwise entertain a crowd to have their moment in the spotlight. 

During Friday’s event four musicians turned out to bring some musical heat to a chilly winter night. 

Hosted by North Carolina transplant Luke McPeeters, the show started off with a series of slow, soulful ballads by Dave Sterenchock, who sat behind a vintage-looking microphone with his guitar. 

“I like to share the pain,” joked Sterenchock, who sang a series of songs inspired by some of the losses in his life. “I’m the epitome of the whiny singer-songwriter.”

Later in the evening he picked things up with two songs he normally plays when he performs at renaissance fairs. 

Next up was Doug Mills, a guitar player and singer who worked as a plumber for 40 years and has the hands to prove it.

“I’ve got plumber hands so they’re short and fat,” he said, standing at the front of the church with his guitar and harmonica. “People are amazed I can play at all.”

Mills opted not to use a microphone, instead letting his powerful voice and guitar playing fill the room unaided. According to Mills, he uses open mic nights like these to “get it all out,” remarking that he’d “sleep well” after his performance. 

Ross Wickerski took his turn on the stage to play a few bluesy songs on his guitar including Johnny Cash’s cover of “Personal Jesus” by Depeche Mode. 

Finally, McPeeters, the host of the evening, played an instrumental piece on his guitar to warm up and then played his second song with vocals. 

As the night came to a close, musicians and music lovers alike looked forward to the next open mic night at the museum. 

According to Mills, there aren’t too many venues hosting open mics anymore, but the Mattapoisett Museum is a great space to play music.