Choosing your karaoke song
Actually having an array of karaoke songs up your sleeve is a great thing to have. Some careful consideration on what type of song is right for the occasion and the tempo and key of the song are all factors that make a karaoke evening of fun and enjoyment so much easier.
There are a myriad of websites on the internet which offer song choices, all these tunes are typically classics but, and the big but, is are the song choices right for my voice and would it suit my style of so called singing.
Not every song has the same level of difficulty. Some songs are notoriously hard to sing, but when you hear them they sound so beautiful. Have you every tried to sing Whitney Houston’s, I will always love you! if you dont know what i am talking about maybe give it a try next time your have a karaoke night and see how it goes ;). Sometimes people really can pull this off, but it requires a real raw talent and theses special people should be applauded.
Another good example is Beyonce and Halo, a beautiful song and she sings it so will with such each, we are all conned into thinking we can all give this a good go. How wrong you would be to choose this song if your a newbie. Check here to see the queen herself do an acapella version.
Next question is, do I sound like anybody in particular. Am I lucky enough to sound a bit like George Michael, or more like George Foreman ;). Great case in point is this artist who has grown quite a following on youtube Marc Martel, he naturally sounds like Freddie Mercury effortlessly. Have a listen to his Bohemian Rapsody cover, its actually not even karaoke as its that good, what a real talent to have.
For us mortals its good to practice in the shower at least one good, easy to sing, very easy song to sing thats not challenging vocally but at the same time gets the party going. Now you can choose a rap song, which is fine as long as you can rap quickly and know all the words, if your unfamilar with the lyrics you will quickly fall behind and loose the crowd and fail with the song. A good choice if your not a great singer but can rap fast, but terrible choice if your not a regular listener to this type of music, so generally stay away from Eminem!
Pop songs are a good choice, generally as we know most of the words to these style of song and the tempo is not too quick and the key is generally not too high or low. Its a good starting point to look at if you are also in to pop, so try an upbeat track this will always get the party going. Some examples are:
- Dancing Queen – ABBA
- Right Said Fred – I’m Too Sexy
- Spice Girls – Wannabe
- Billy Joel – Uptown Girl
- Johnny Cash – Ring of Fire
Slow songs are these a good idea? Generally speaking it depends on how familiar you are with the song and the key in which it is sang. Some recommendations are:
“Too Shy To Say”: Stevie Wonder (Perfect love song that’s easy to sing.)
“How Can I Tell You”: Cat Stevens (Another, perfect love song that’s easy to sing.)
“Into My Arms” : Nick Cave (We used this one as the first dance as husband and wife at our wedding.)
“Come Away With Me”: Norah Jones (I know this was played a lot ten years ago, but it’s been awhile, as long as you haven’t been over listening to Pandora, it’s a beautiful love song that’s easy to sing.)
What is a Key or Pitch?
Slam’s Karaoke machines all come with the ability to change the pitch or key of a song to suit your vocal range. This means that the range of the song in general is either highered or lowered dependant on your preference. So if you sing like Barry White with a vary low key, you may want to keep the pitch at zero. However if you have a natrually higher sounding voice, you may wish to increase the pitch of Barry’s song so you can sing it in the correct key.
Visa-versa, you might chose a song like I Believe In A Thing Called Love – The Darkness. Which is very high pitched and out of most peoples range, in this instance i would always knock this pitch down 2 or 3 bars to a more manageable range. Have a play with the machine and choose a song in the right key for you. Once you have a handful of songs and know the key for your voice, you are half way there.
After you have mastered your pitch and vocal capabilities, you might want to consider changing the tempo for the song. Myself i find this particulary useful when trying to sing songs that perhaps have a rap element to them. Raps are notoriously hard to sing in time and to a good standard. Slowing down the whole song one or two beats really does give your brain time to read, digest and come out with the correct lyrics, in good time to read the next line. Generally a great way to cheat the system and goes generally unnoticed apart from the most avid fans of the song you are singing karaoke style!
Some good infomation and dummies guide here.