Luke’s Top 5 Karaoke Songs

Those who know me well know I love to sing karaoke. When I lived in Toledo I would often go out to diners, pubs, and restaurants for karaoke, often dragging along a group of friends.

While I have sung many songs over the years, there are standard ones I come back to over and over. These are my top 5.

. . . .

American Pie

This is usually my #1 pick. There’s a couple of reasons for this. (1) It’s long. When you’re waiting in line to sing, it’s nice to maximize your time on stage. This song is usually one of the longest in the karaoke repertoire. (2) Everybody knows it, so it is easy to get the crowd singing with you.

. . . .

Call Me Al

I love this song. I love the music video. (Seriously, what musician thinks “Hey, I’ll just get Chevy Chase to lip sync my song for me”?) This is one of my favorite karaoke pieces because many people know it but not many people really know how to sing it. The rhythms in the song are funky and irregular, so you really can’t lean on the highlighted words-on-screen to guide you. Plus the lyrics are fantastic. “He ducked back down the ally with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl.” What is that?

. . . .

Wake Me Up Before You Go Go

Wham! had a great sound. The music video is also unforgettable…in a disturbing sort-of way. (George Michael flapping his arms around while he wears a CHOOSE LIFE t-shirt just screams “Welcome to the 80s.”) This is a great karaoke song because it is energetic and poppy: you can’t stand still when you sing it. This is my favorite song when I’m looking to exercise my tenor range.

. . . .

Solsbury Hill

There are so many things about this song I like: everything from the addictive repetitive guitar riff to Peter Gabriel’s heart going boom-boom-boom. This is a great crowd pleaser. Most people know the song but no one ever thinks to perform it, making it a hidden jewel of karaoke music.

. . . .


Copacabana is a funny because the tune really doesn’t match the lyrics at all. It’s a song about a showgirl at a famous New York night club and a mob boss who gets too fresh with her one night. Her bartender boyfriend gets jealous which leads to a terrible fight, ending in the bartender being shot and killed. The song ends with the same showgirl sitting in the same bar 30 years later, getting wasted as she think thinks about her lost love and lost youth. And all of this is set to a delightful disco beat.

This is a great karaoke piece because (1) everybody knows it, and (2) it is perfect for dramatic hand motions. The song is full of visual cues in nearly every line. Plus, most karaoke versions include the tediously long instrumental interlude, giving the performer ample time to dance around, go to the bathroom, get a drink, call his mother, do his taxes, and write a novel, getting back in plenty of time to sing about Lola losing her mind.


One thought on “Luke’s Top 5 Karaoke Songs

  1. YOU are AWESOME Luke!!! šŸ™‚ i cannot wait til I am graced with your karaoke skills sometime…hopefully sooner than later!

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