Apr 19, 2005

How To Sing Karaoke:

Karaoke is easy. Singing well is hard! If you just want to do karaoke, all you really need is too much to drink, and you name on the list. However, if you actually want to do well, there are some things you need to know....

First, watch American Idol. Listen to what the judges say about the different contestants and why they did well. The number 1 reason why singers fail is SONG CHOICE! There are only a few people in the world that can sing old school Maria Carey, and do it well enough to impress an audience. However, most of us can stumble through Vanilla Ice. When choosing a song, there are 5 things you have to consider:

  1. Do you know all the words to the song?
  2. Do you know the melody?
  3. Can you sing the notes required?
  4. Does the song's attitude fit your personality and the mood of the room?
  5. Is it recognizable to everyone else in the room? How popular is the song?

Do you know all the words to the song?
Most importantly you have to know the VERSES. Everyone knows the chorus, but the true test comes on the start of the song, and the verses! This is can be fudged a little since the words are on the screen while your singing, but at least, you have to know how the whole song goes, even if you don't know it by heart.

Do you know the melody?
Obviously, you have to know how the song goes, but you would be surprised at how many people forget once the words start changing color on the screen. There is nothing worse, than when someone takes your favorite song and murders it. Often times, especially late in the night, notes off key can be forgiven, but if you are not on the beat or even a whole bar behind, the song is ruined. You may get away with it for a couple seconds, but once you hit the refrain and the background singer are singing a different verse, you are going to look like an idiot. PLEASE, know the song well enough to stay on beat, and all other sins will be forgiven.

Can you sing the notes required?
This is where over 75% of us, potential singers are disqualified. I say us, because I can't sing well either. Here is the key. I don't try that often. This doesn't mean that you have to give up singing, just pick easier songs. Think about it, your normal voice has to be in some key. Just find a song in that range. If you have a high, squeaky voice, then sing Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. If you have a low, monotone voice, then sing Humpty Dance or Barry White. If you are not an accomplished singer, these people are off limits: Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Josh Groban, Marvin Gaye, Lionel Riche, and Maria Carey.

Does the song's attitude fit?
This never enters the mind of 50% of all karaoke singers. Especially, singers with good voices! Think about it, you have an amazing talent, and a chance to impress hundreds of people. Why would you pick a song that is slow and dramatic, and make everyone cry? Sometimes, its ok, at the beginning of the night, the very end, or for a break, but for the most part, go ahead and ROCK IT OUT! Why not knock the socks of the audience, get them out of their seats and shaking their booty? The key is to fit the mood of the bar at that moment in time. If it is early and everyone is still mellow, sing a relaxing song. If it is late and the dance floor is crazy, then sing a fun, crazy dance song.

How popular is the song?
WOW! Is this one important? Most karaoke providers have 1,000's of songs, not all of them are suitable to sing. That's because we go to a variety of places, and purchase compilation CD's with a variety of tracks on them. If you are in the hippest new night club in town, and dancing the night away. You could absolutely rock out a country song, and no one would care. You could hit every note, it could be an awesome song, and you could be getting into it, but no one will care if it they don't know the song. So here's the tip, read the room, listen to what other people sing, and pick a song that they can sing along with too! You will be a lot more popular, and probably make some friends. To get a great response, the audience has to know the song well enough to tell that you rocked it out!

Disclaimer: With all that said, if you don't care that you get applause, sing what you want. You are ultimately doing it for yourself anyway. So if its a country bar and you want to inject some rock or dance, then go for it! Just realize that you might not get the love that you deserve.

1 comment:

  1. I agree! Slow songs usually bring down the party at Karaoke shows!!!