The Evolution of Karaoke, Part II.

27 05 2008

“Love on the Rocks”

Every year for the last decade I host a fantasy basketball draft that involves plenty of malt liquor, trash talking and sloppiness. Tradition dictates that draft survivors take it deep that night. My girlfriend suggested we go to Japas. We were all sloshed, so it seemed like a good idea!

It was a debacle. Britney Spears’ “Hit Me Baby One More Time” was carnaged in good fun. But after seeing one my friends whom I’ll call The Uncle kneel down on one knee and serenade a lady with Neil Diamond’s “Love on the Rocks,” I was hooked. It was pure genius. Who cares if I butchered Foreigner’s “Cold as Ice”?

Japas Revisited

After that fateful night at Japas, my boys wanted more. So we hit Japas again. We tried to get nice and sloppy, but one of them brought a very bossy girlfriend. A true Game Killer. Not only did she stuff the box with songs, but also decided what songs we were going to sing! It was a night of Mary J. Blige and Justin Timberlake. She then offered to share Motley Crue’s “Home Sweet Home” but her version of sharing was to scream over the other person. Like Foreigner, we were indeed as “Cold as Ice”!

The Karaoke One-7 Era

Karaoke One 7

One night after a fine dinner at the underrated Basta Pasta, my girlfriend and I gave the Karaoke bar next door, Karaoke 17, a shot.

It had 13,000 song book courtesy of Karaoke Champ with the open bar of a Japas as well as the private rooms like Village Karaoke. Even if the staff were like cold Asian robots, 17 became my karaoke den of choice for the next few years probably because I did not know any better. It turns out 17 tries to cater more to the “Phantom of the Opera” show tune crowd as opposed to the party crowd. I bet they are glad I am gone. I owe them a visit!


The Evolution of a Karaoke Guy, Part I.

27 05 2008

Everyone Remembers Their First

It was at Village Karaoke on the Bowery, down in the depths of the private rooms. My girlfriend took me to a birthday party full of girls, but most of them did not dig dudes. They forced me to sing “Jump” by Van Halen. The only part I knew was the part that goes “Jump!” It was humiliating. Crickets. The only thing worse would have been a night out at Lucky Cheng’s or The Culture Club.

Sometimes the Second is Better

About a year later, my girlfriend convinced me to meet join her and her cousin at the cavernous Japas on St. Marks. Those Karaoke Divas flawlessly belted out the likes of Madonna and Pat Benetar. After plenty of Kirin and sake, I mustered up the courage to give Sweet Dreams by the Eurythmics a shot. It was monotone. It was kind of lame. But I did it. And it felt good. It certainly beat having to learn the cha-cha!