Singing for fun and as a form of expression goes way back to the infancy of human civilization. Karaoke just makes social gathering more happening and entertaining. It also facilitates social interaction among people that don’t usually interact.
To put it simply, karaoke is an activity wherein people sing along to songs with recorded music that plays in the background. The lyrics flash on a screen to guide the singer.
Here are some facts about karaoke that you might find amusing.
- The word “karaoke” comes from Japan. It so happened; some musicians were supposed to perform. But they did not make it. In their stead, a band played. Thus, “empty orchestra” that is “karaoke” came to being.
- The Philippines has a very robust karaoke culture. Platinum karaoke (which is one of the leading karaoke manufacturing companies) holds the record of 17000+ songs in any karaoke system. This is the greatest number of songs provided in any karaoke.
- Speaking of the Philippines, Frank Sinatra’s “My Way” is banned in many karaoke bars there. The song is not particularly popular among Filipinos. The lyrics is considered arrogant. This song has led to attacks on people who dared to sing it. This has got the song banned even though it’s a great song to sing along to.
- In 2009, the karaoke machine was ranked the most unpopular gadget ever invented. This was the result of a poll in The United Kingdom. About 2,500 people voted in this poll. Karaoke might seem fun but it also has its haters. While it is all well and good for the person singing, it can be tad bit annoying and unpleasant for the audience. Of course, that depends on how good of a singer one is. So, be weary next time you pick up the karaoke mic.
- Ever heard of Kamikaze Karaoke? In this game, people are selected randomly, to sing random songs. It is also called Karaoke Roulette. It will definitely spice up your karaoke night!
- Being a karaoke jockey or KJ is a real job. And a fun one at that! You get to introduce singers, announce songs, and motivate them. Sounds great, doesn’t it? Do consider it next time you’re job hunting.
- Think of yourself as a great karaoke singer? Participate in the World Karaoke Championships. They’re held in Finland every year. With participants shortlisted from over 30 countries. It is truly an amazing international event.
- Japan is a crowded country. Consequently, the houses are very close by. This created a problem for the early karaoke singers. No matter how melodious your voice is, it is bound to get annoyed for your neighbours after a point. This unique problem led to the discovery of the karaoke box. The very first karaoke boxes were actually railway cars that were able to keep the sound inside very well.
- The inventor of the karaoke machine missed out on the opportunity to make millions of dollars off his invention. He did not see karaoke becoming globally popular and did not get the machine patented. However, he did receive an Ig Noble Prize. This is a satirical award “that first make people laugh, and then make them think.” Inoue sung “I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing,” as a part of his acceptance speech. He also got a very long-standing ovation.
- Karaoke is scientifically proven to increase confidence, decrease stress, and improve social interactions. It also smoothed relationships as it is a great bonding activity. You see, karaoke is not only fun, but also has benefits.
- In South Korea, karaoke is more commonly known as noraebang. “Norae” meaning song and “bang” meaning room. These are rooms where you sing along with your friends, you belt out songs to your heart’s content!
In Korea, it doesn’t matter whether you’re good at singing or you like singing. It is a social etiquette to join in and sing along.