Karaoke mania is sweeping the world! Have you already taken the stage to sing your favorite song to those you know and love? Otherwise, you may find yourself at the singing end of your nearest karaoke system very soon. So what is this karaoke, anyway? What’s the buzz about the newest karaoke player? What do you need to know to be “on top” of this latest trend? Here are some facts, figures, karaoke lingo, and trivia you might want to know.
Karaoke is a Japanese word, made up of abbreviations of two other Japanese words. “Kara” comes from the word “karappo”, which means empty. “Oke” comes from the word “okesutura”, which means orchestra. So “Karaoke” literally means empty orchestra. Karaoke players play the music of the songs, without the lead vocals. So empty orchestra means you get the music without the vocals.
The first karaoke system was invented in the 1970s in Kobe, Japan, by Daisuk Inoue, a musician. He rented his karaoke player for 100 yen, and Karaoke soon became fun.
Unfortunately, he didn’t get a patent for his invention, and someone else patented it under a different name, “Minus-One”. As you can see, his Minus-One system didn’t become as popular as the catchy “Karaoke”, so Daisuk still got the fame from it. Word spread of Daisuk’s new machine, and from Japan it has now become very popular throughout Asia, Europe and the US.
Perhaps the karaoke players are the most popular of all in Finland. Finland holds several world records for karaoke. They have more karaoke bars per capita than anywhere else in the world. They hold the world record for the most people singing the same karaoke song at the same time: 80,000 people! What song were they singing? Hard Rock Hallelujah! Finland also holds the world record for the longest round of non-stop karaoke singing: 240 hours!
Imagine that! Now you can use your karaoke system to create new world records!
What’s a new fad without its own specialized vocabulary to go with it? Here are some karaoke words to know:
Karaoke Player – This is the actual karaoke machine. Play karaoke songs or music without lyrics. The lyrics are displayed on a monitor so people can continue singing the song even if they don’t know the words.
Spinning Karaoke: This is riding a stationary bike while singing karaoke. What a workout!
KJ: This is the karaoke DJ. He runs the karaoke system and gets everyone involved. He adjusts the karaoke player to alter the key or pitch to better match the singer’s voice range, and adds some echo to make everyone sound more professional.
Kamikaze Karaoke: In Kamikaze Karaoke, the KJ will choose a key number for you, and you must try to sing the song in that key.
Hitokara: means that you should sing the song alone.
Karamovie – movie clips where voices are left out
Health Benefits of Karaoke:
And here’s some great news: singing karaoke releases endorphins! Those are the “happy hormones” that make us feel good!
Also, singing karaoke releases stress and tension and helps exercise the lungs. So the next time you want to hit up your local karaoke bar, you can feel good about it!
New types of karaoke player:
Now you can get Karaoke Ipods, Karaoke Cell Phones and DVD Player/Karaoke System combos. China has a karaoke car. Japan, and now spreading to other countries, has karaoke boxes: karaoke system/soundproof rooms.
Latest karaoke news:
Jackie Chan will sing the opening song for the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics – KARAOKE STYLE!
Go figure. Maybe there is something to this karaoke after all. You should try it!