Ah karaoke. I love it. I think it is fun and funny. Though I don’t get to do it as often as I’d like to, I go out to karaoke often enough to know how to make sure I’ll have a good time each time.
But, if you go karaoke-ing with me, there are 7 rules that you gotta observe:
- You gotta be from my tribe i.e. the no-shame, no-holds-barred, everything goes tribe. I’ve learned that the company you karaoke with is very important. A good session must also have the right no and mix of people. 3 is good, 6 is plenty. Anything more than that and you will have people looking bored or playing with their BBs the entire time instead of singing along, which I find slightly annoying. Having a group of mixed genders is always fun because those crazy-catchy Indonesian rock songs almost always require a male contribution.
- You gotta sing along. Singing is not a pre-requisite but singing along is. When crowd pleaser songs are played, sing. Show your support to our fellow karaoke-ians. Karaoke is a lot of fun when everyone sings together especially when there is only one mic to go around. It’s kinda like a bad Glee episode. It’s very good. Side note, a friend commented that you also need to ‘level’ yourself to make sure you are more or less on par with the rest of the people in the group. Meaning, make sure that you don’t outdo or show-off your singing skills to the point of being obnoxious. Karaoke is a social activity, so dumb yourself down to mesh with the rest. It doesn’t mean you have to sing badly, although singing badly is not a bad thing in karaoke. It means you don’t have to sing seriously and throw a tantrum when you hit a bum note, or roll your eyes when someone else does. Relaaaaax. It’s just karaoke.
- Dress comfortably. Karaoke rooms are usually small and intimate. When you’re in your bling bling and dainty strappy sandals it’s hard to rock out to Bon Jovi‘s Living on A Prayer. Nothing kills of my mood faster than a group of people who’s super conscious about their looks, clothes, image etc. That just ruins a karaoke session.
- Help me to rearrange the furniture. Always create a ‘centrestage’ by pushing away the coffee tables to the sides of the room. This way, those who want to eat won’t be accidentally elbowed in the ribs, and those who want to air guitar through Sweet Child O’ Mine will have ample space to unleash their inner Slash.
- Keep on selecting and trying out songs, even those you are unfamiliar with. Don’t worry about whether you can sing a song well or not. Just select them, put them in the queue and try them out. If you don’t like it, press stop and go to the next. A lot of people moan that the karaoke joint doesn’t have the songs that they want to sing. I find this so elitist. What are we? Auditioning for American Idol? I didn’t know I like singing My Way until Amat Potai selected it and now I can’t not sing it when I am karaoke-ing.
- Performance performance performance. The thing about karaoke is not really about who has the best voice. It’s who’s the best sport. In other words, style over substance. Histrionics is very welcomed. So is jumping on the coffee table and the sofa and shaking your booty to Cee-Lo‘s F*ck You. You’re not singing a Rolling Stones‘ song, you’re fucking Mick Jagger. So strut like a rooster, mate.
- Do it again. If you like a certain song, go ahead. Sing it again and again. I will clap loudly each time, I promise.
What are your karaoke rules?
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