Unplugged entertainment – Listening lounge puts focus back on singer-songwriters

The strum of guitar strings, imagery-inducing lyrics and a home-style ambiance resonate with attentive crowds at Moonlight on the Mountain, a local listening venue.

Its owner, Keith Harrelson, has been drawn to music since his teenage years when the Beatles came to America.

“Anyone at that time was a bit of a musician,” he said. Yet, his love for music didn’t fade away with the British Invasion.

Harrelson wanted to introduce others to the pure sounds of acoustic instruments and talented singers. So, he opened the Moonlight Music Café coffee house in Vestavia Hills to bring together talented artists with captive audiences. However, the high costs of providing food and drinks, combined with the failing economy, left its mark and eventually forced this venue to close its doors.

But the music never died, at least not for Harrelson.

He reopened a listening venue in Hoover three years ago on Shades Crest Road across from Tip Top Grill, this time naming it Moonlight on the Mountain. This lounge does not serve food or beverages like its predecessor, but visitors are welcome to bring their own and enjoy the folk, roots, Americana, country or bluegrass tunes.

To read more about Moonlight on the Mountain, check out the January 2013 issue of Hoover’s Magazine. Find your copy here.