Saturday, June 02, 2007

Bad Karaoke

We don't take karaoke singing seriously. Thank God for that.
Karaoke is about amateurs and most times, about singing out of tune.
We excuse or forgive the man or woman in the karaoke lounge who kills your favourite song when he or she goes off key.
Sure, sometimes it is so bad that you just wanna, er, yeah, kill the clown. But, you don't because you sing as badly yourself.
And karaoke singing is all about having a lot of fun. A real good time.
Now, if you're planning a trip to the Philippines and have got karaoke-ing as part of your itinerary, I suggest you exercise extreme caution.
See, Philippines is a land of talented singers. Very talented singers. Like Indonesia. And Sabah.
It's in their genes, I tell you. So, when you are in the Philippines, don't go about belting out songs any which way you like, and killing them in the process.
Your "lagu cari makan" may really turn out to be your last.
I kid you not.
Take 29 year-old Romy Baligula. Someone just couldn't stand the way he was singing that he took out a revolver and shot Romy in the chest.
He was killed for singing out of tune. Just like that. Poor guy.
This happened in a Manila Karaoke bar on Tuesday (May 29) night.

According to AFP, Romy was halfway through his song in a bar in San Mateo town, east of Manila, when 43-year-old security guard Robilito Ortega yelled that he was out of tune.
Romy ignored his comments and continued singing. Robilito pulled out his revolver and shot him in the chest.

Now, if I have any grand plan to impress the Filipinos, I really need to take singing lessons.
Or die.
And did you know that the popular Frank Sinatra song "My Way" has been taken off many karaoke bars in Manila after it was found to be the cause of fights and even deaths when patrons sang out of tune? (The full story is here.)

And I've always thought that "My Way" is one of the easier songs to sing. That is why far too many people just love to go for this song in karaoke lounges in Malaysia.
For this reason alone, the song should be banned in our karaoke joints.


Bergen said...

Do you think I can make money selling bullet proof vest outside karaoke joints, the way vcd peddlers do their stuff?


I think in the Philippines, or any place where they take karaoke-ing so seriously, you can, I am sure. And seriously big bucks too.
But here in Malaysia, naaah. You are so expected to sing badly in karaoke joints.

I know a place (or two or three) where when you sing so well they tell you to move over and go somehere else where "professionals" are welcomed.
"Not here, pal.. here is for amateurs.."

I like that... my kind of karaoke joint where singing off key is not an offence, or a sin. And everybody claps after that.

Shanghai Fish said...

My dear,
Now, back to npc my dear... I'd have personally have shot three-quarters of the members every night ! like last it this morning ? And if one does sing in a karaoke lounge please lah stand up and sing...sitting and singing does not bring out the best in you...unless you are a yours truely....... heeeeeh!!!


I say, stephen, looks like bergen may be able to make good business after all.
he'll be able to make good money just standing at NPC's entrance selling his bullet proof vests.
NPC members sure need them with you harbouring such designs -- to shoot bad singers at NPC. Whre's yr sportsmanship, bro?

anyway, i thought NPC has some real damn good championship-level karaoke singers, whaat! Practice (a lot of it) has really made them sooo sooo goood. of course, some born talented. like you...heheheh

Typhoon Sue said...

i think i don't have to go to the philippines to be at risk of being shot to death
even here, if i sing often enough, someone somewhere will surely shoot me one day.
which is why i don't sing

seriously, karaoke is not a fun place for me,
or anyone with me when i'm there.

Anonymous said...

I have first-hand experience with the dangers of sharing a karaoke lounge with a Filipino. Not contented with my first blunder of singing (seriously out of tune, I am sure) in the presence of a pro - a Filipino one at that, I had the temerity to pick up the spare mic when she was singing. If looks could kill, I would have died a thousand deaths with the "looks" she gave me while furiously waving her free hand for me to stop singing with her.

Thank God, my above encounter did not take place in the Philippines, I would be "dead meat" otherwise.


Sue : You're not alone, although you are among a dying breed in this day and age.Karaoke, I think has become so much a part of our life. Er... is this too presumptuous?
I used to be like you, Sue.
Take care..

Sesat: Hahahaaa.... i can just imagine how pxxxed she must have been. You know, i bet she was ok with you sounding off key. I think she'd kill u if you sang better than she did.

Kak Teh said...

aaah, this reminds me of that late night or was it morning when we karaoked at the press club and perhaps drove everyone home! I knew that I would be leaving the country the next few days, so there was no stopping me!

Pi Bani said...

Hmmm... in that case if EVER anyone wants to go karaoke-ing (croaking?) in the Philippines, better not sing My Way. Start lagu je dah "And now, the end is near..." Next thing you know... BANG!! -The end-


Kak Teh (Ah): How can I forget? So much fun. No, we didnt drive anyone away. We hogged the microphones. Nobody else could sing. We ruled....
tapi, ok whaat.
We also did, one time in London. Kat mana, ek? Melati? i remember we had to go downstairs...
Take care, Ah. Loved your story on the Pak Cik sailors. Some more got lagu "Semalam di Malaya" -- original version pulak tu!

Pi bani : Yes... I would advise anyone against even attempting to attempt "My Way" in the Philippines.
Come to think of it, better not go karaoke-ing..

Daphne Ling said...


Thanks for the tip; I'm gonna keep my singing-mouth shut...

If that is the case in Malaysia, I would have been shot a long time ago...I can't carry a tune to save my life (pun intended) and completely tone-deaf (listening and projecting!)...


Pasquale said...


When karaoke was introduced in Malaysia a lot of local gangsters killed each other also, but now we are quite civilised about. Last week we went out too a local pub and I was singing in front of pubs patrons and I got cheered, and the song was one by Elvis, my favourtie! Trust me Canadians are also bad karaoke singers but the onus is on havng fun. Cheers!

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...I like 'My Way'...(sigh)

Rockybru said...

Ena/Fish, If we were in Manila, the Press Club would have buried its manager a while ago and karaoke banned thereafter!


daphne: you know, that's what they all say, and then, when they take the mike and start to sing..... adoi, like pro like that.

Pasquale: Yeah, bro.I'm sure too many died, over the mic.
Must be quite a celebrity at the local pub.
Was it "in the ghetto"?

Ayah: Looks like you need to like another song.....


Ahirudin (Rocky): Hahaaah..I don't see why we cannot do the same here.

Unknown said...

The person who got shot must be drunk, actually he wanted to go to a croake club.

Shanghai Fish said...

Hey m.d.,
Gimme a break...sheesh you guys are way too serious..I know there are alot of good singers in the NPC and they have endorsed it too..(remember we were Inter Clubs Champions 2 years ago !)...I'm talking about the others...the ones who need alot of begging and pleading to go up and sing...and you find like you just made a big mistake asking them in the first place...ok.. Now back to me..I'm good !( no need to bury me !)
Cheers !

Anonymous said...

Ok ok...

I belted out 4 songs last Fri night. Not 'My Way'lah, and I didn't get shot at (phew...). I guess my band members managed to cover my seriously out of tune and jet-lagged voice with their excellent guitar works. Well, no one in the audience died..or had a heart attack, in which case, if it were to happen, they will be safe as help would have been immediately available! ;p

I have another show this Sat. Will find some easier songs, I guess...and kena minum air asam jawa byk2... :)


KTN: Hahhaa. Betul tu.

Stephen: Ok can start training people now... many hidden talents abound. and we won;t bury you.

Ayah: amboi, Ayah... you sound like a real pro.
Coool... a singing doctor. heart doctor to boot. Yay.
You're probably in demand in karaoke bars in the Philippines.

IBU said...

Alamak Kak Ena!! Just had 'our' croaking session last night (or was it morning? hehehe...). Actually with the so-called 'majlis tertinggi' (HAHAHA!!), minus WanShana & hubby - itu coming soon. Oh! How lucky we were - all singing off tune - so we couldn't be shooting each other. Was a good therapy though, ayaq mata sampai mengalir laughing at & with each other's croaking out of tune. And it rained cats & dogs today!!

Anonymous said...


I'm a band boylah, Kak Ena. Our regular singers for some reason conveniently got busy all at the same time, so I grabbed that opportune moment to display my karaoke skills, minus the jumping on the sofa/seats bits lah.

Maybe we can all go karaokeing for dessert after Kak Ton's mee rebus (and I promise I won't sing My Way!)


Anonymous said...

Ena, Reading this, I'm more convinced that ever -- Karaoke Kills!

Shanghai, love your karaoke konfidence. Bet it's bulletproof! ;D

Pak Tuo said... ni time lapse agaknya?

J.T. said...

Once was all it took for me to sing "My Way" and the whole darn pub joined me. argghh...
Lady Patsy was with me and she burst out laughing.
After that, I chose songs people did not know. hahahaha

I did not know how dangerous it was to be in a Manila joint until I saw a sign (when I was there in 1995) that said "leave your weapons at the reception area. No weapons allowed inside." Alamak! would I want to go in there?
I probably would not be here today if I tried singing in the Philippines. They are way too talented. It is very common for almost every home to have their own karaoke entertainment systems. :)


Ayah : A band boy? steady tu. Hmmm, was shana a groupie? heheheh..
Ok..we must see you for ourselves...mesti terror! You are one happening doctor.

Ibu: adooi...sounds like a lot of fun... i know what its like.

mekyam: only in the philippines, mekyam..
here in malaysian, we are forgiving people. we give applause even to those who sound like minnie mouse.

Pak tuo: time lapse macam mana?

JT: They are so talented, i know. scary when u have to sing in their presence.

wanshana said...

Dear K.Ena,

No comment on Ayah's singing talent - but, you should hear him singing Bee Gees numbers - sebijik macam Maurice, Barry and Robin Gibb!!!! Hahaha!

Me - a groupie? Errr...not in a million years, especially when it comes to Ayah's band! Hahaha!

I don't sing - fullstop. When I go for karaoke, I am more of Milli Vanilli - I mime! Saves a lot of people all those awkward moments.

But, IBU - you should hear her belt out Lady Marmalade. GEMPAQ...


shana:if ever we get to go karaoke, we will get Ayah to belt out a Bee Gees' number. Alamak... what a treat!
Amboi amboi amboi.....ibu terror giler lagu Lady Marmalade! bukan lagu sharifah aini atau lagu siti nurhaliza but LADY MARMALADE, kira hot tu.
Must listen, one....
And shana, I know girls like you... hmmmm. pasti nyanyi terror.