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KARAOKE MAGAZINE 

Karaoke Origins The word karaoke comes from combining two Japanese words: karappo, meaning empty, and okesutura, which means orchestra. The craze started in Kobe City, Japan, and spread like zebra mussels around the world, infiltrating every musical market.

 

Auto Exec Wins Karaoke Marathon

 

  Karaoke King

After an all-night long karaoke marathon at its Times Square studio, Good Morning America showed you five finalists who managed to out-sing the rest. They sang all night long in Good Morning America's karaoke marathon in Times Square and viewers voted online for their favorite singer.

  Loves To Sing Derek Leggins, a 48-year-old Philadelphia auto executive who wooed the Times Square crowd with his smooth delivery of "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine" by Lou Rawls apparently dazzled the viewers at home too. He handily won the ABCNEWS.com vote, with votes pouring in from across the country all day Friday. The prize: a new karaoke machine, and a chance to sing the national anthem at a game of the Brooklyn Cyclones (new single-A farm team for the New York Mets). And, of course, he also was able to sing on Broadway during Monday's show, at the Good Morning America studio at 1500 Broadway in Times Square. "I've been a long time doing this, waiting on a break," said Leggins, who would love to sing professionally. He has been singing since he was a child, where he started in the church choir.

Taken from an article from ABC News .

 Karaoke Cabbie

 Karaoke Relief One man's passion for music has been the driving force behind his very own...

  One man's passion for music has been the driving force behind his very own karaoke taxi service in traffic-clogged Bangkok, Thailand. Bangkok traffic is simply notorious.

Cab Driver Suwit Thongthim said I am providing much needed relief for stressed out passengers

while we all wait stranded in the never ending traffic jams." I like music very much and I drove past a karaoke bar one day and a brilliant thought came over me," says Suwit. "I had a very good feeling about this idea" Suwit figured it was a safe bet that installing a karaoke system in his cab would attract many more passengers.

  Cost Me Plenty The karaoke gear inside the taxi consists of a five inch lcd mini television monitor installed on the ceiling, two wired microphones and a video cd karaoke player. "This sound system cost me plenty" as he opens his trunk to reveal power amplifiers and speakers. "I don't have room for luggage" he say's with a grin. In addition, to all of this there's a set of cool flashing disco lights and a mini mirror ball to create the right atmosphere even in the heaviest of traffic. His selection of karaoke songs range from classic Thai, Japanese, and English with Thai love songs being the most popular.

   Local Celeb You won't pay more for a ride in this cab, the only charge the passenger pays is on the meter. And the passengers are flocking to him. Suwit is never without a fare, as would be passengers shout for "Suwit". "I feel very happy when I drive my taxi". The karaoke taxi gives me a chance to forget about heavy traffic jams and to relax while waiting. On a good day Suwit can make up to $40 u.s., excellent money in Thailand. Since starting up his karaoke taxi service, his name has become a household word He has appeared on several local television talk shows and in newspaper articles. Written by Frank Falvo 02/04/2002
   

Take Me To Your Microphone

 

Cheaper Than Therapy The unconverted may have a hard time referring to karaoke as entertainment, like terming paint-by numbers art or ketchup a vegetable. Those familiar with karaoke know the stereotypes and prejudices associated with their activity of choice. Frank says, there is more to it than singing off-key to a Sinatra standard.

 But to serious devotees, karaoke offers a chance to make friends, kindle musical connections and take a shot at those 15 minutes of fame. OK, so it's more like four minutes of fame. Nevertheless, for the average singer, it is the opportunity to shine in a way they just cannot do in the office, on the bus or collecting dust in a tavern.

 

 "Many people find karaoke a respite from their normal, tedious lives," observes Frank Falvo who does the karaoke for "eight years now" at  Bourbon Street West

Wednesday nights 1866 Sources blvd, Pointe-Claire (514) 695-6545  "who says karaoke doesn't have longevity".

Thursday night Frank can be found at the Cajun Blues in Ste-Annes

60 Rue. Ste-Anne, Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue (514) 457-0878.

"They leave their stress behind and use it as a way to be silly. It's an escape." As soon as Falvo sets up his gear  a flock of singers fill out and hand in slips of paper and patiently wait their turn to get their 4 minutes of fame.

 

Five Types Of Singers For those  who label  karaoke as cheesy and kitsch, Frank defends it as cool. It takes guts, he says, to stand in front of a room full of strangers and pour your emotions into a song. In that respect, karaoke is no different than watching any band that cares about its performance. Frank adds his ideal audience consists of 70 percent people who do not sing and 30 percent that do.

 

According to Frank, five types of people show up at a karaoke show.

 

The first, believe it or not, he calls groupies people who regularly attend shows but never sing.

 

The second group consists of the actual singers who make the rounds at the numerous karaoke shows in area clubs. These people light up their lives through singing.

 

The third are cheating husbands with the rationale, since a karaoke bar is the last place any wife would look to find them, Frank says with a grin.

 

The fourth type are members of bands in search of a singer.

  

The fifth and final category are musicians who are simply looking for some entertainment without pretension.

Are You a Karaoke Addict:

Read The Top 10 List 


No.10 -You have your own personalized song requests slips
No.9 -You arrive at the bar with more karaoke discs than the host
No.8 -You plan you’re vacations by how many karaoke bars are in the area
No.7 -You carry your own microphone with you at all times in case a karaoke party breaks out
No.6 -You moved, to be across the street from a karaoke bar
No.5 -You installed a karaoke machine in your shower
No.4 -You personally sang the first dance for your own wedding
No.3 -You’re grocery list is on the back of a karaoke request slip
No.2 -You earn more money by winning karaoke contests than at your day job.
And The Number One Reason You Know You’re a Karaoke Addict
No.1 -You were recently spotted shopping for an Elvis jump suit

 

Written on 02/04/2002
By Frank Falvo

Perfect-Pitch Karaoke
New Technology
Japanese firm unveils technology for perfect-pitch karaoke


TOKYO - Some might call it Japan's biggest victory against noise pollution since pop duo Pink Lady split up two decades ago. Karaoke sound systems provider Taito Corp said on Tuesday it had teamed up with a U.S. professor and chipmaker Analog Devices Inc on technology that could give even the most tone-deaf crooner perfect pitch. Using the ''Csound'' computer music language pioneered years ago by Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Barry Vercoe, Taito will market a system this summer that adjusts sing-along music automatically to the pitch and tempo best-suited to an individual singer.

Particularly Suited For Ballads
''This is sound synthesis on software that until now was only used in experiments and research,'' said Hidehito Kitamura, who headed up Taito's development of the new system. Eventually, he said, Taito may use the technology to reconfigure a singer's errant tones to the proper pitch, without otherwise altering the sound. ''We'll be moving from one new feature to the next.'' That could be good news for the millions of regular patrons at Japan's karaoke bars -- both those who dread the inevitable pressure to sing even if they can't carry a tune, and those who have to listen to them. ''Karaoke is said to be an original Japanese cultural contribution, but this could take it to new levels,'' Keio University professor Toru Iwatake told a news conference unveiling the technology. Tuesday's demonstration was limited to automatic tempo adjustment, particularly suited for ballads, Kitamura said.

It Can Convert A Spoken Voice Into A Melody
The system will also let a singer calibrate the key automatically before a song begins, he added. Machines now require manual pitch and tempo adjustments, which can be hard for amateur songsters to gauge and can create distortions that are difficult to sing along with. For those confident of their vocal prowess, moreover, the new system will be able to objectively assess pitch, rhythm and skill at such voice techniques as vibrato and crescendo -- an indispensable item for the occasional karaoke competition. Karaoke rating systems already exist, but they can only determine how closely the singer''s voice matches the recorded original, not singing ability. ''This assesses singing skill mathematically,'' Kitamura said. MIT''s Vercoe, who lauded Taito for finding a way to bring the sound synthesis technology to market, said pitch correction with Csound had been demonstrated long ago. It could even convert a spoken voice into melody, in real time. ''It's in the technology. You just have to switch it on,'' he said.

 Taken from an article from Reuters News April 02, 2002

My Way or The Highway
Karaoke Krazy
Sinatra's My Way banned?....



Dreadful Performance
Manila, A Filipino man was killed and his friend sustained serious knife wounds, after they sarcastically applauded a karaoke singer’s dreadful performance of Frank Sinatra's classic "My Way".

Attacked Two Victims
An Off-Key 21-year-old student turned angry and offended when the two victims commended his performance. The livid singer then attacked the two victims who later escaped outside to avoid further injuries. However, were later ambushed outside the bar and attacked again by the scholar this time slaying one of the victims. Witnesses immediately called police and the mad student was later arrested.

Not The First Time
In a remarkably similar incident, one man was killed and another wounded, when a brawl broke out in a karaoke bar in northern Manila, once again apparently sparked by the abysmal quality of singing.

My Way No Longer "A Number 1"
Newspapers reported Philippine karaoke bars have been removing "My Way" from their song lists because fights were becoming a frequent phenomenon. For unfathomable reasons anytime “My Way” is sung disappointingly, drunken men will perpetrate anything from verbal insults and threats to physical injuries and now homicide. Who knew!

Written on 03/13/2002
By Frank Falvo
 

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