I have been going to karaoke bars since I was about twenty years old. My BFF Jenn and I used to go to Karaoke nights at a now deceased pub called Wise Guys, in Pasadena and sing for free drinks. It worked. I never paid for a drink there and I fell in love with Karaoke. I have sang Karaoke all over the world – from L.A., to NY, to London, to Mexico and of course Prague. I have been deemed “Karaoke Girl”, or “Karaoke Queen” and constantly get asked the same questions. I figured since the last entry was about Karaoke, I might as well take this time to inform all of you of the songs you should NEVER sing. Ever.
10. Anything by The Grateful Dead. – Seriously. If you feel the need to sing Sugar Magnolia, or Casey Jones do everyone a favor and call your hippie friend Harmony and ask to join her drum circle.
9. We Like to Party – The Venga Boys. The last time someone (or should I say some PEOPLE!) sang this I was struck with the urge to saw my ears off. The only thing around was a ball point pen, so I opted to get a whiskey and go to the bathroom instead. If the song sucks by the people who originated it, then please know it will suck when you do it too.
8. Dream On – Aerosmith – You are not Steven Tyler. You are just some drunk dude screaming.
7. I Will Always Love You – Whitney Houston – I have been asked to sing this song twice and I did so reluctantly. I broke my own rule. The fact is that the Dolly Parton version (she wrote the song) is better. Anyone who attempts to try and hit those Whitney notes either comes off sounding comedic or pretentious. Either way, you lose.
6. With Arms Wide Open – Creed – Take your tribal tattoo and your sensitive Jesus loving song elsewhere. Please. Girls are NOT impressed by this song, I promise.
5. Under the Bridge – RHCP – I don’t know if it’s just in Prague, but EVERY WEEK someone sings this (or some other) song by this band. Please stop.
4. Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen – Yeah, yeah, we have all seen Wayne’s World. You are super cool. You are singing THAT song.
3. Like a Virgin or I touch Myself – Both of these songs make the girl singing look trashy, desperate or just sloppy drunk. While its fun to look at the train wreck that is eight sorority girls drunkenly grind each other while giggling their way through it, it is best left undone. And guys? Its WAY worse when you do it.
2. Like a Rolling Stone – Bob Dylan – This song goes on forever… and ever… and ever… and never changes. Its the same notes over and over and over. And its like 8 minutes long. And no matter who sings it it will annoy everyone.
1. Stairway to Heaven – Led Zeppelin – I don’t think I even have to explain this one, do I?
So, there it is. My top 10 Songs NOT to sing at Karaoke. The moral of this story is: Just because its a good song, and YOU like it, doesn’t mean it will work at Karaoke.