KC in the Afternoon

KC in the Afternoon

KC in the Afternoon

You don't have to have bad karaoke experiences. Avoid these seven deadly singing sins, and your night can be a success.

Karaoke night can be a fun, lively spectacle for bar hoppers and partygoers alike. But sometimes, karaoke night is just absolutely ruined by people who commit some of the cardinal sins.

Who doesn’t love belting out your favorite tunes – drunkenly or otherwise – free from judgment in a carefree environment? When done right, karaoke can be an effective way to loosen people up and get them out of their shell.

In a study done by the Royal Society for Public Health, singing, and karaoke can be linked to a number of physical, mental, and social health benefits. Think about that the next time you’re busting out those “DA-DA-DA‘s” during Sweet Caroline.

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t have the strongest singing voice. I certainly won’t be touring with Taylor Swift anytime soon. But that sure as hell won’t stop me from singing Love Story with my whole entire chest whenever it’s my turn at the mic! Karaoke is less about singing skill and more about self-expression and letting go of your inhibitions and anxiety for a few minutes. You can also use it to show off your personality and tastes that could attract like-minded people. From rock n’ roll, to hip-hop, to R&B, country, and even Broadway musicals, there’s a crowd for everyone at karaoke night.

But of course, with every fun thing comes a litany of ways that people make it decidedly unfun and ruin the experience for everybody. Whether it’s heckling someone else’s performance or picking songs that are entirely inappropriate for the occasion, there are many sins that people commit far too often at karaoke night. I say it’s time someone puts a stop to it. And as quite possibly the most tone-deaf person in the world, I feel wholly qualified to be that someone.

So the next time you’re at the bar and the karaoke machine comes out, be careful to avoid these seven deadly sins:

  • 1. Not respecting other performers

    As silly as it may sound, it does take a fair amount of courage to get up in front of a room full of people and sing karaoke. So under no circumstances should you act in a way that discourages others to get up and sing. This includes heckling and taunting the singer, booing their performance (yes, even if it sucks), giving them a visible thumbs down, etc.. This behavior is not only rude and insulting but could also result in you getting kicked out of whatever event is hosting the karaoke.

  • 2. Picking overplayed songs

    Granted, this one may very well be the most forgivable karaoke blunder, but it still qualifies as a sin. This recent article by Whiskey Riff lists some of the most overplayed country songs at Nasvhille bars, with well known entries such as Friends In Low Places, Jolene, and Sweet Home Alabama. But it’s not just country that has this issue; pretty much every genre has 3 or 4 songs that get played to death at any given karaoke event. Don’t Stop Believin’, Gangsta’s Paradise, Mr. Brightside, the list goes on and on. Look, sing what you wanna sing of course. Just don’t be surprised if you pick one of these and notice a few rolling eyes in the crowd.

  • 3. Picking songs that don't match the setting

    This one should be a given, your song selections should reflect the energy of the place you’re karaoke-ing. If you’re at a kid’s birthday party then pick Disney songs, not Eminem. If you’re at a work party then maybe you should avoid literally anything by Rage Against the Machine (I’d honestly respect that move but I don’t want you to get fired). Doing this just makes people uncomfortable and kills the vibe for everyone.

  • 4. Picking extremely long songs

    The novelty of karaoke wears off quickly whenever someone gets up there and picks a 6 or 7 minute song. Brevity is key when picking the perfect track, and if you commit this particular sin you run the risk of losing the audience to their phones while you’re up there singing your heart out. I’d say the ONLY exception to this rule is Bohemian Rhapsody. That song is a masterpiece that deserves every single second it’s given.

  • 5. Taking too many turns

    Nobody likes a mic hog. As fun and freeing as karaoke can be, it’s imperative that you make sure everyone who wants to go gets a turn before you start doing encores. So don’t bogart the machine, some of us would also like to go up and sing some Carrie Underwood.

  • 6. Trying WAY too hard

    I’d lump this one in with sin #2 as being more annoying than outright sinful. There’s nothing wrong with being a talented singer and wanting to show it off, and there is something to be said for the theatrics of karaoke and how it can enhance one’s performance. But there is such a thing as overperforming. This isn’t The Voice. You’re not vying for a Grammy. You’re most likely at a bar or a family reunion, you really don’t have to give a Broadway worthy performance. It’s like if Lebron James took on your son’s JV basketball team. We get it, you’re good. But we’re just trying to have fun here.

  • 7. Picking this song

    It’s funny, you see, because the song is just the same word over and over again. Ha. Ha. HA. Hilarious. Look, we get it. You’re not original for picking this song solely on its meme-ability. It was funny when this guy did it, but the joke is OVER. Deal with it.

Sign me up for the KML email newsletter!

The Big 95.7 KML is proud to bring you all the best in country music, as well as the latest news and events locally, from our KML team members!

By clicking "Subscribe" I agree to the website's terms of Service and Privacy Policy. I understand I can unsubscribe at any time.