Discovering the joys of karaoke on the Danforthby Katy Littlejohn
The great thing about having a whole neighbourhood centred around one main street is that anything you need can probably be found in a single trip. On top of that, when it comes to crossing things off your list, there are so many options. Want to go for coffee? There’s Crema, Mocha Mocha, Timothy’s, Starbucks… Need groceries? Take your pick of produce stands, butchers, bakeries, fish markets, bulk food… Itching for a night out? Try dinner at one of the dozens of great restaurants, followed by drinks at any of the pubs.
Then how about some fun? Karaoke, anyone? To get your Danforth song on with this favourite pastime of children, and inebriated adults alike, check out the Fox & Fiddle between Fenwick and Carlaw, just west of Pape.
Karaoke is always a perfect way to spend time with friends, and a great way to make new ones. It carries the tradition of a strange medley of embarrassment and pride, which guarantees a good time, if not in perfect pitch.
Karaoke started in the early ‘70s in Japan. Since then, it has spread across the world’s bar scene, spinning tracks of popular songs without the lead vocal. The culture that surrounds karaoke now includes many strangers becoming the best of friends. Instead of feeling shy or nervous, a performer can confidently sing their favourite song to a room of their intoxicated peers. The pressure is completely off, first of all, because the lyrics are provided, and secondly, because, even if you do mess up, everybody else should be just drunk enough to not care!
The pressure may be off when it comes to singing, however, there is still the pressure of song choice. If American Idol has taught us anything, song choice is vital to a good performance. It’s common for the house to erupt with glee when the first familiar notes of a classic favourite play. It’s that reaction that can make or break a singer’s nerves. Song choice is VITAL!
If you’re new to karaoke, or you want to make a good impression with your date, here are some song choices that are sure to make you a bar star:
You Shook Me All Night Long – AC/DC
Living on a Prayer – Bon Jovi
Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey
Pour Some Sugar on Me – Def Leppard
Faith – George Michael
Summer Nights – Grease
Semi-Charmed Life – Third Eye Blind
I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll – Joan Jett
Can’t Take My Eyes Off You – The Four Seasons
Jailhouse Rock – Elvis
Baby Got Back – Sir Mix-a-Lot
Let’s Get It On – Marvin Gaye
Songs to avoid:
We all love them, but maybe they’ve seen too much love on karaoke night:
Sweet Caroline – Neil Diamond
Brown Eyed Girl – Van Morrison
The slow, or emotionally wrought song:
Anything by Sarah McLachlan
Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me – Elton John
Long songs, songs with a high music-to-lyric ratio, or repetitive songs:
Thriller – Michael Jackson
Freebird – Lynyrd Skynard
Hotel California – The Eagles
Paradise City – Guns N’ Roses
Tequila – The Champs
Total Eclipse of the Heart – Bonnie Tyler
Just remember the number one rule of karaoke is for everyone to have fun. Bring back the classics, remind the crowd about that long forgotten party anthem, and get in touch with your inner 80s rock god. Sing! Sing! Sing!