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Monday, August 09, 2004

Amateur Hour

Peyote Cafe, 18th Street, Friday night. Three-plus hours of music and amusement.

Random observations:

* The three truly inevitable karaoke songs:
1. "Sweet Caroline."
2. "Friends in Low Places."
3. "Wanted: Dead Or Alive."

* Neil Diamond. Singing a song by the Jewish Elvis is generally pretty easy. Not wanting to be the guy who does "Sweet Caroline," which is best left to people who are both more intoxicated and less talented than myself, since it is the hanging John Wasdin meatball of the karaoke universe, I went with "Cracklin' Rosie." I've always had a soft spot for the song, especially since I heard a fun cover of it at the first Phish concert I ever went to.

* The "drunk women singing some lewd song" thing never seems to get old. In this case we had two of them trying their hand at Bell Biv Devoe's "Do Me."

* I have a great respect for Bruce Springsteen, and not just for his songwriting ability. Even a song like "Pink Cadillac," which challenges my singing range not one iota, is tough to get through. I've seen more than one guy think he can take on "Born To Run," only to have his voice just die early in the third verse. And a typical concert by the Boss can go north of three hours! Astounding.

* I've only been to Peyote Cafe twice, and I've two different awful renditions of "Total Eclipse Of The Heart," in which the (male) singers inserted copious F-bombs. I wonder if that's something that happens everywhere, is endemic to this place, or if it's just another manifestation of the "double sitcom phenomenon." (The "double sitcom phenonemon" is that weird effect whereby if you only watch a sitcom twice ever, it will often be the same episode.)

* A group of six men attempted to sing "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'." Unfortunately, though one of them could kinda sing, none of them had any rhythm.

* To the extent that he collects royalties whenever a bunch of drunk guys at a karaoke bar attempt to sing "Tiny Dancer," Elton John ought to throw a little of it at Cameron Crowe. If someone tracked karaoke frequency, I bet "Tiny Dancer" renditions have gone up by a factor of ten after "Almost Famous."

* The most amusing highlight of the night were the two guys signing "Hungry Like The Wolf." Not only did one of them attempt to relplicate the female sex noises heard before the final chorus, the other guy inserted wolf howls at irregular intervals in the song.

The best singing performances of the night:
* A good-looking, blonde guy doing a good and faithful rendition of "Let's Get It On." Woof, indeed.
* A young black guy doing a letter-perfect "Let's Stay Together." Dedicated to Rick James. *chuckle*
* Tricia did a fantastic job with "Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This."
* Another handsome guy singing nailing Billy Joel's "Only The Good Die Young."


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