Monday, August 14, 2006

The Man in Black is laughing his arse off...

I hate karaoke. No, I mean I DETEST it. Really. If you're a trained singer at all, you know what I'm talking about... and for those of you who aren't, you probably know, too. (see update below)

My grandpa is turning 80 this month, so we did the party thing yesterday. And guess what his wife had as a surprise for him? You guessed it. Karaoke. *groan*

So, here's the deal-- if your grandpa is proud that you can sing, you are morally, legally, and ethically bound to get your arse up on the cheesy little stage and sing karaoke. At risk of hurting an old man's feelings, you're just going to do it.

But it couldn't possibly be that simple, now could it? No. As you choose to sit in the back of the bar, wheezing from all the smoke and old people body odor, someone related to you is going to prod you forward. And that someone is your brother... who is also a singer... who, for some unknown reason actually LIKES karaoke*. And that little brother wants you to sing a duet with him. Fine.

Grandpa's favorite singer is Johnny Cash. Little brother says, "C'mon. Let's sing Jackson. It will be great!"

Do you know the lyrics to Jackson?

We got married in a fever,
hotter than a pepper sprout,
We've been talkin' 'bout Jackson,
Ever since the fire went out...

Not exactly the song I want to sing with my BROTHER. Eww.

I think I'm scarred for life. Oh, well. Happy B-day, Gramps.

UPDATE: lest anyone think me a singing snob, let me explain a little-- I taught vocal music. I'm all for encouraging people to sing, regardless of talent or ability. I don't care if you sing out of tune, as long as you're singing. What I hate about karaoke is that it brings out all those people who think they are the best singers in the world... you know who they are. They also show up for American Idol auditions. Whether they can carry a tune or not isn't the issue. It's all about the attitude. When you think you are God's gift to singing, but you're in a karaoke bar? You should just stop. If you put your name in the karaoke dj's basket more than twice a night so that everyone can revel in the glory that is your voice... you're either showing off (or as ludi says, "a complete tool") or you are a microphone hog. Either way, JUST STOP. And THAT's what I hate about karaoke.

*Here's why he likes karaoke: he can sing ANYTHING and sound great. The dude sings Elvis, and women throw underwear at him. It's quite sickening, yet strangely intriguing all at the same time.


mjd said...

I am sorry, but I like Karaoke. Maybe the affinity for Karaoke is related to lack of ability to sing. The less singing ability one has the more that person likes Karaoke. Karaoke lets everyone play like they are great singers; only the listeners suffer.

othur-me said...


Vocal nails on a chalkboard.

Guinness_Girl said...

I adore karaoke, although I must confess I have only karaoked in public once, and that was as a Pip to Gladys Knight's Midnight Train to Georgia. Yes, I confess - I own my very own karaoke machine - and it's much more fun with wine and only people you love around you, with whom you feel VERY comfortable.

Ludicrousity said...

I think you're in the minority DCMM! I love karaoke. I'm a trained singer, but I love it when peopel suck. It's funnier! In fact, I think when you can sing you end up looking like a tool, you look like a bit of a show off really. Karaoke is so much fun! I love it! Because no one cares how good or bad you are, it's just so fun! Wish I'd been at the party! :) My friend had a party that ended up at a karaoke bar while I was holiday a few weeks ago, I was so sad I missed it!

-R- said...

Reminds me of Arrested Development where the Jason Bateman character and his niece sang "Afternoon Delight." EWWWW.

Margus said...

Karaoke is for tone-deaf drunks, or at least those are the only people I ever hear "sing" karaoke.

I'm with you on this one, 86 Karaoke.

MiMaw said...

I don't mind observing Karaoke and even that depends on how much I have had to drink. I couldn't carry a tune even if I put it in my pocket but the desire to sing is there. I try not to inflict my singing on anyone. My kids would literally beg me not to sing happy birthday or lullabies. So I don't love it or hate and I can certainly live without Karaoke.

don't call me MA'AM said...

mjd: actually, I don't mind when people get up and sing karaoke. It's the people who THINK they can sing who get all cheesy and... arrrrggh!

othur-me: yep. That about sums it up.

gg: at home is a great place for karaoke.

ludi: EXACTLY! As I said to mjd... I don't mind when people get up and have fun with it in all their off key glory. What I hate is when someone gets up and thinks they're God's gift to singing and act like a complete tool. YES! That's exactly what I meant!!!

-r-: okay, Jason Bateman wins. That would be much worse than Jackson. ;-)

margus: amen. Save it for the home parties, and maybe private parties at bars. No need to subject unwilling participants to that.

mimaw: it's kind of like what the American Idol judges have to sit through in the early auditions, isn't it?

goldennib said...

That song is just wrong to sing with your brother.

I can't sing anymore. I was tramatized in 6th grade. I sing in my car, alone. I would never do kareoke, unless I was really, really drunk. So that would be never.

My husband has a Dean Martin sort of voice. Melty.

Stinkypaw said...

I did karaoke twice, once in Japan (AS IF I had any choice!!! the Japanese are nuts for that Karaoke mic!) ...and an encore in Hawaii at our wedding reception... yes we had a karaoke machine, and despite my worst fears, people had a blast! Go figure! It truly think that in order to enjoy any karaoke one must have a few drinks into them. (I had in both instance! Sake does wonder for the voice, or the hearing!) ;-)

What I TRULY, REALLY hate about it is when people "volunteer" the person who "chose to sit in the back of the bar, wheezing from all the smoke and old people body odor" - now, that's the worst!

BTW, Congrats to Gramps! 80! Woohoo!

hannah said...

-r-, i also immediately thought of skyrockets in flight. that show slays me.

my alltime favorite karoake song to sing is "in the year 2525" by zager and evans. dont know it? download it.

don't call me MA'AM said...

goldennib: Ah, the Dean. The Voice. Why were you traumatized? (or I guess, HOW?)

stinkypaw: I think a wedding would be fine for karaoke. It sounds like you all had a blast!

hannah: OHMIGOD!

In the year 2525, if man is still alive, if woman can survive, they may find...

My favorite one is the part about picking out your kids from the bottom of a long glass tube. What a song! Thanks for reminding me!!!

goldennib said...

I was in the school choir and was talking while the teacher was talking to another singer and she kicked me out. Yelled at me in front of everyone. You know, your typical childhood mess. I was too embarrassed to go back.

Ludicrousity said...

Ok, DCMM I can agree with that. It is quite painful to see people who think they're awesome and they are just definitely not! That does hurt. I'm hurting just thinking about it actually... But in general, I LOVE karaoke! :)

Jurgen Nation said...

I hate karaoke because I'm too shy and can't hold a tune, but if I am ever forced, I have decided that I will do Biz Markie's verson of Elton John's "Benny and the Jets." If you haven't heard it (you must) I will post it on my site for download. Let me know.

hannah said...

In the year 3535,
Ain't gonna need to tell the truth, tell no lies.
Everything you think, do, or say,
Is in the pill you took today.

Pardonnez-moi francais, but FU*KING AWESOME LYRICS!

Julie_Gong said...

I just left you a really great comment and then my computer blew up so... and now I can't remember what the comment was. (tear)

don't call me MA'AM said...

goldennib: I'm sorry. That sucks!

ludi: nothing wrong with that. :-)

jurgen: B-B-B-Bennie and the Jets! Oh, and did you know you can get that song KARAOKE STYLE from iTunes?

hannah: I totally agree. And to be honest, that song used to scare the HELL out of me! "Mommy! I don't want to take a pill for everything! Wah!!!" ;-)

julie: that just made me laugh SOOOo hard! I do it all the time. Let me know if you ever remember!