Play the Bluebird

  • Monday Open Mic [Every Monday night from 6-9pm]

    The Bluebird Café - Monday Open Mic: NEW Guidelines

    The following guidelines will be implemented beginning on June 1st, 2015
    We will now be taking phone in sign-ups for our Monday Night Open Mic. In order to sign-up, please call 615-943-8168 between the hours of 11am and Noon CST on Monday in order to sign up to participate that evening. You will not be able to leave a message; you need to keep trying ’til you get through to someone who will put you on the list. We will take the first 25 songwriters who call in to sign-up. (Each songwriter is allowed one guest). You can only sign-up for the open mic on the day that you are calling! We do not accept advanced sign-ups.
    Writers who are on the list must be at the club and have checked in with the host by 5:15pm on that Monday evening in order to perform. 

    We will be honoring any existing “Play Next Time” stamps but will not be distributing any more as of June 1st.
    Please remember the following guidelines as they remain in place: Each participating writer will get the chance to play 1-2 original songs, solo or accompanied by no more than two others on stage. Drums and backing tracks are not allowed. We do have a house Kawai digital piano that is available to use (88-weighted keys). 

    PLEASE NOTE: Even with the advanced sign-ups, priority is not given to out-of-town/out-of-state songwriters.
  • Sunday Spotlight [Every Sunday from 6-7pm]

    Spotlights offer bands the opportunity to play the Bluebird. Writers who have played at least four Sunday Writers’ Nights and have high scores from our judges, may be eligible to play. Other writers who would also be eligible are staff writers from established Nashville publishing companies and touring artists with product and local/national press.

    Spotlight bands can include up to 6 pieces (including a very small drum kit). There is no pay for these shows but CD sales are allowed.

    Submit material to:
    The Bluebird Cafe
    ATTN: Sunday Spotlight
    4104 Hillsboro Pike
    Nashville, TN 37215

  • Sunday Writers' Night [Every Sunday night from 8-11pm]

    Writers’ Night features 8-10 songwriters playing three songs each. The show is hosted and ends with a special guest performance by a hit-writing songwriter from the Nashville music industry.

    Writers performing on these shows have passed an audition. Performances are rated and filed for use to determine when a writer might be eligible to perform on our early shows or Sunday Spotlights. There is no pay for these shows but CD sales are allowed.

    Submit material to:
    The Bluebird Cafe
    ATTN: Sunday Writers’ Night
    4104 Hillsboro Pike
    Nashville, TN 37215

  • Auditions [Held quarterly]

    Bluebird auditions are only open to Nashville residents, people residing within a 100 mile radius of Nashville, and/or active members of an NSAI regional chapter.

    They are judged by Bluebird staff and professional from the Music Industry. Each person auditioning is asked to play a verse/chorus of one original song, essentially about one minute of a song. This policy was devised by the original owner, Amy Kurland, who said that one verse and one chorus is all it takes to win someone over with your song. All audition performances must be acoustic, no drums or backing tracks, and no more than three people on stage.

    Continue to check our homepage, newsletter and other social media outlets for news on the next audition.

    The next Bluebird Cafe Sunday Writers' Night Auditions will be held Sunday, June 25, 2017. You can sign up for the June 25th audition on Friday June 2nd at 11AM CST on our website. 
    *A couple of notes: 
    1. Audition slots are limited and often fill up immediately (within 30-60 seconds). 
    2. Please DO NOT book a plane ticket until you have signed up for auditions and you have received a confirmation.

  • Early Shows

    Early showtime slots feature the best up and coming songwriters selected from our Sunday Writers’ Nights. Writers who have played at least four Sunday night and have high scores from our judges, may be eligible to play an early show. If you don’t already have a following, you should continue to play Sunday nights and Open Mic. Requests can be sent to

  • Late Shows

    Late showtime slots are reserved for local or national acts with a large following. Openers for these shows are sometimes selected from the best early show performers, though these opportunities are extremely limited. Requests can be sent to

  • Helpful Links for Songwriters

    Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI)
    NSAI is a great organization which offers many services to writers at every level. or call them at 615-256-3354 for more information

    The Songwriters Guild of American (SGA)
    SGA is another good organization that provides resources and information to songwriters at every stage of their careers.

    Performing Rights Organizations (PROs)
    There are three of them in the US and they are businesses designed to represent songwriters and their right to be compensated for having their music performed in public.

    The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP)
    Handles performing rights for songwriters but also presents educational events, workshops and information on a variety of songwriting.

    Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI)
    Also involved in supporting and promoting songwriters’ rights. Their site features a database of their writers’ catalogue for reference.

    Society of European Authors & Composers (SESAC)
    Handles music licensing around the world and their site also provides valuable information on songwriting, licensing and catalogue owners.

Venue Hours

Two shows every night

6-7 pm/Door @ 5pm
8-11 pm/Door @ 7:30pm
6pm/Door @ 5:30pm
9:30pm/Door @ 9pm
6pm/Door @ 5pm
9pm/Door @ 8:30pm
6:30pm/Door @ 5:30pm
9:30pm/Door @ 9:00pm

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