10 Karaoke Commandments – from Ignite Portland 4

10 Karaoke Commandments

10 Karaoke Commandments

I got a lot of emails from Portland Karaoke lovers to post the 10 Karaoke Commandments from Ignite Portland 4Alex Williams' entire Ignite Portland presentation can be seen online at Youtube.

So here are the 10 Karaoke Commandments (by Alex Williams)

First know: failure at Karaoke is being totally ignored.

  1. Karaoke is not a singing contest
    No text message voting, no record contracts, you won't win any awards
  2. Leave it all on the stage
    Don't just stand there, get up and do some moves. Just perform, don't have any regrets.
  3. Use a fake name
    Create a persona, it's not you, it's that other person
  4. No groups – 2 people at most
    There are only 2 microphones so if you're not holding a microphone, you're irrelevant and get off the stage
  5. Know your range
    Know what type of voice you have, if you can't sing Don't Stop Believing, stop believing you can sing it. Sweet Home Alabama is a great song to sing, not too high not too low. Don't be a hero.
  6. Pick a song you would play at a party
    The party test: A song you'd play at a packed party, if you wouldn't do that, don't do it in karaoke. Do not pick the Beatles because you'll never sound as good or better than them.
  7. Know the verses of the song
    If you don't know the verses of a rap song, don't do it.
  8. Musical measures are the enemy
    A long guitar solo is a long you solo
  9. Karaoke DJ is The Soup Nazi
    Hand them your slip, a tip and walk away (they'll never be your friend)
  10. Adapt to your Audience
    Pick something the audience would like, not just something you want to sing.

Most importantly – Have Fun!

Here's a list of my favorite Portland Karaoke bars & lounges : Voicebox Karaoke Lounge, Chopsticks II, The Boiler Room, Galaxy Restaurant and Lounge, The Alibi Restaurant and Lounge.

Ignite Portland 4 Hits but KGW has an Epic FAIL

Ignite Portland 4

Ignite Portland 4

Last night the Legion of Tech delivered another successful installment of Ignite Portland. If you're not familiar with the event it's an evening of presentations from people who are passionate about their topic, any topic. Presenters are given a set amount of time to talk with a predetermined number of slides which advance automatically as they speak.

Ignite typically hits a wide range of topics and subjects and is often peppered with Top 5 ways to do this, or the 10 commandments of that. Ignite moves along so swiftly it's like watching  a stand up comedian telling spitfire jokes, some of them are sure to hit and make you forget about the ones that don't.

The highlights of Ignite Portland Were:

The biggest failure of the evening was KGW's reporting.  KGW has been getting its toes wet with social networking and so they decided to try to get involved by covering the event. While it's easy to forgive Stephanie Stricklen for not knowing how to use the @Reply function on Twitter, Joe Smith's coverage of Ignite Portland is almost unforgiveable. In some of the worst bumbling reporting on Portland Television so far this year, Joe Smith clearly had no idea where he was or what he was sent to cover. The reporting was so bad, no words can really do it justice, it really just speaks for itself. (View KGW's reporting of Ignite Portland).

Ignite Portland 5 is scheduled for Feburary 19 and submissions are open now for talks. I'd really like to see the event reach out deeper into the Portland creative community and have a stronger representation from outside the close nit Portland Tech Community.

Voicebox Karaoke – A Fantastic Addtion to Portland's Nightlife

Scott Simon - Voicebox

Scott Simon - Voicebox

Karaoke is very popular in Portland, and as a result some find it very difficult to get up and belt out their favorite tunes in front of so many people.

Enter Voicebox, a brand new Karaoke 'complex' which just opened near NW 21st (2112 NW Hoyt St). Rather than a traditional Karaoke bar, Voicebox is divided up into six private rooms. Each room has the capacity for a different number of people (as few as 2 and as many as 24) and has its own private karaoke system.

Voicebox's systems are all high end, with Samsung flat screen TVs and Yamaha speaker systems. The acoustics in each room are also ideal, one of the rooms has the feel of a recording studio and with the doors closed no one can hear your singing outside.  You won't find a better sounding Karaoke experience in Portland

The karaoke systems are easy to use and let you queue up songs so you can spend less time picking songs and more time singing them. The the library of songs is pretty extensive but had some some notable holes (including Violent Femmes and Metallica).

All the rooms Karaoke connect to a center bar area that serves wine, beer, sake and light food with in-room waitress service so you don't have to go out to the bar to get your drinks if you don't want to. The staff at Voicebox is extremely friendly including owner Scott Simon, a former electrical engineer who got the bug to open Voicebox after a trip to Korea. Karaoke complexes are more common in Asia and Simon imported the idea while adding a decidedly North West twist.

Private rooms are rented by the hour with rates varying per room (the average is about $7 per hour per person) and Voicebox holds special events like an upcoming Karaoke Clinic for people to brush up on their karaoke skills.

Voicebox is a fantastic addition to the Portland nightlife scene. I had an absolute blast singing a ton of songs, many more than I'd ever be able to sing at a regular karaoke bar. I enjoyed taking risks and singing songs I'd never consider singing in front of a crowd (including Avril Lavigne's Sk8ter Boy).  I really appreciated the fact there was no smoking inside Voicebox as going out to karaoke often means coming home reeking of smoke. Voicebox is an idea place for a birthday or bachelorette party and I can absolutely see going back with a group of friends.

Voicebox is at 2112 NW Hoyt St. (503) 303-8220. They do take reservations and I expect them to fill up on key nights very fast.

Here are pictures from the Voicebox opening event:

And Videos: