Karaoke is something of great pleasure for me. In my hometown of Tralee there is very little to do for those who aren't children or pensioners. Since arriving in Dublin to study my masters, Wednesday nights in Captain America’s has been a godsend for me.
When I walk into the bar, it's as if I’m entering another world: a world where there's no law against cursing or saying shocking things. It's where I go to let off steam and have a good time with my mates, but in a different energy to simply downing naggins in a house or chancin' women on a dance floor.
Karaoke is a release. It is a platform for anyone to perform (almost) any song. Be it that ninety’s jam that everyone loves, a hard hitting piece of classic rock or that hidden gem of a song that everyone has forgotten - karaoke has something for everyone.
I have witnessed some classics of course but along with that I have witnessed some catastrophic fails; one provided by myself. I had built up something of a streak of form for the bones of 3 weeks and was quite satisfied with my specialized genre of upbeat boy band classics, however on one particular week I chose to go outside my comfort zone. The song was “Boyfriend” by ninety’s megastars NSYNC. The track is an R’n’B style pop song with a significant amount of talking or half arsed rapping. I had no problem singing but in this song my thick Kerry accent didn’t sound quite as smooth as Justin Timberlake’s LA enunciation. It was a failure.
Luckily I managed to somewhat redeem myself with a reasonably slick version of Justin Timberlake’s hit, “Seniorita”. The ending of the song in particular is a pure party piece, and though it requires a bit of talking, it was not as hard to pull off as muttering, “Would you be my girlfriend? You know I like you right, but would you be my girlfriend?” I know, cringe!
The perfect recipe for an earth-shaking karaoke number is a song that everyone knows, but everyone has forgotten. I have seen some magnificent performances from friends of mine this year, from Nelly to All Saints but the one which will live with my memory forever was my friend, a regular Edition contributor, Gav Lacey's rendition of “Year 3000” by Busted. Simply singing the song alone would have been enough but he brought soul, energy and charisma to the track; you genuinely thought that he may have actually been to the year 3000. He also added in some cheeky lyrics, for example in the breakdown when he sang, “I took a trip to the motherfuckin’ year 3000.
This song had gone multi-platinum Everybody bought our seventh album, seventh album, seventh albummmmmmmmmmmm, yeah!!” He had the whole crowd on their feet for the blockbuster final chorus. It was by far the best karaoke performance I have ever seen.
My friends and I have been in attendance at the Captain America’s karaoke Wednesdays so much at this stage that we are unsure whether the organizers love us or hate us, either way we’ll be there every time. I would recommend anyone to give Karaoke a try at least once. It is a wonderful opportunity to raise your self belief and confidence by getting up on stage and belting out a song in front of a crowd of people. It’s an alternative way to spend a night out, and undoubtedly an untapped resource in Dublin among students. Karaoke nights are a winner for me.