Karaoke is to sing over pre-recorded music without lead singers. Your voice will replace them. Karaoke is originally joining 2 words of ‘Kara’ and ‘Oke’. ‘Kara’ comes from ‘Karappo’ which means empty, and ‘Oke’ is a shorten word for ‘Okesutora’ which is orchestra.
The amazing thing about karaoke in japan is that you can basically choose who you want your audience to be. If you would like to sing with strangers in a bar like setting you can go to any bar that has a sign カラオケ”karaoke” written on it.
You can enjoy karaoke privately with friends or even by yourself in so called “karaoke boxes”.These have become much more common and you can find these chain stores in almost every street corner.
In Karaoke box, you will be using one private room with TV, microphones, and tambourines. There are thousands of songs you can choose and sing.
Singing your hearts out can build up quite an appetite but not to worry. Many of these karaoke boxes also provide food and drinks including alcohol. And depending on which karaoke box you go to you can either get all you can eat food and drinks or pay per food and drink. So you don’t have to look for the nearest restaurant when in need of food.
How much singing my heart out will cost
Karaoke boxes vary in prices depending on which chain store you go to. The prices are usually per half hour or hour per person not per room and are usually higher in rush hours, weekdays after 19:00-20:00 and all weekend.
You can also find cheaper places where you pay a fixed fee for 3-5 hours and you also get all you can drink services.
What to do once you are there
Here’s what you do;
1) Walk to the counter and you will be asked how many people you want to hire a room and for how long. It’s usually cheaper to go for more than 3-4 hours.
2) Your room will include a TV screen, 2 microphones and a touch pad on which to choose songs from in Japanese.. don’t worry its easy to figure out how to work the control panel and a lot of places have selections in English. So you just select the songs you want, pick up the microphone(make sure its turned on) and start singing.
3) You can also change the volume of input and output, change the key and insert echo.
4) If you want to order food and drinks you just pick up the phone usually near the door and order what you want.
5) When your time is up you will get a phone call telling you your time is up and you can either wish to increase your time or go to the counter and pay the fee.