Thursday, May 21, 2009

Karaoke Queen of the Chicago Scene (Chicago Part 2)

I wasn't really the Queen- I didn't rule this event or anything- I just like the alliteration in the title!

While in Chicago last weekend, Farrago took me to an event, the Chicago Karaoke Underground Party. There is a cool woman who hosts this event in her loft apartment. And what a loft is is- OMG! You know how we see these fab apartments on TV or in the movies in large cities and they are just to die for? And you know how magazines or native New Yorkers, LA-ers, and Chicagoans all say "oh that place would cost about $123k a month if rentable in real life"? Well, the loft owner, who I shall call the Diva of Darkness, has the loft like the lofts you see on TV and in the movies. OMG- it is the greatest apartment I have ever been inside in my life. I bow to her, I covet that space- I WANT that space, I would do dastardly deeds for that space, I would be part of heinous fuckery most foul for that space. And her decorating is to die for...

Okay, all that being said, Diva of Darkness opens her home to random strangers to come and sing karaoke. People sign up in advance, pay a fee and come to sing- and drink and eat- the fee covers the booze and noshes. She has a professional KJ- who is a HOTTIE with a sexy goatee/ beard goin' on- and she has a sound system which kicks ass. All in all, Diva of Darkness has a better set up than most clubs I've been to. It rocks, she rocks, the night rocked.

Now I haven't been to sing karaoke for about 3 years now, and usually when I do sing, I've always gone with Hecate and her family and buddies. They are awesome singers and I've always felt completely inadequate when I've performed. I drink a lot of booze and have few inhibitions, but...

So this was the first time I was singing in front of complete and total strangers. And you do hear the stories about karaoke singers who are booed off stage- which I was afraid would happen. Farrago assured me that these folks were nice and wouldn't boo me off the stage, even if I sucked. Because there was no stage.... Okay, no he told me these are super nice people, but I was still nervous.

I visited with some folks and scoped out the small crowd- which only turned about to be about a dozen voice strong. I had a few drinks and listened to a few people. I decided that there weren't any "ringers" in the audience and that the next American Idol or Grammy winners weren't lurking about, that maybe I could actually sing in front of these people. No one had hurdled tomatoes, used the giant hook or booed and hissed, so I turned in a song.

And when the KJ called my name, I thought my knees were going to give out, or that I was going to pee my pants. Then I sang. And everyone clapped. Then I sat down. And sweated. But it was fun and the people were kind!

The evening went uphill from there. Everyone sang and had a good time. Since the crowd was small it was a good time to sing songs I've always wanted to try but never had the guts. And some were good, and others weren't. I did a rendition of "All that Jazz" from Chicago, which I thought sounded pretty good- and Farrago made over my performance of such in his post- here (scroll to the "paratay at the belt way" part of his post- it was so long, he gave it chapter titles!)!

And Farrago tore. it. up on a Styx song- he totally kicked ass!

The cutie KJ sang some great Elton John... and there was a girl there who studied opera in college- and she did some amazing things with Sarah McClachlan songs. Oh wow. And there was a sweet guy who I'll call KaraokeSam with a great voice, who was very much the entertainer. Diva of Darkness likes her song bawdy. And there was a guy who was a dead ringer for Les Nessman (looks wise) on the TV show WKRP in Cincinnati- and while his singing might not be super duper (but not horrible) he was a good guy. Another woman crack me up with her song choice- the "Micky" parody called "Ricky"? And another time found her singing "Like A Virgin" with her legs up in the air... ummmm, I think she had quite a bit to drink...

It was a great time with good people, good food, and guess what?!? I was invited back! I can't wait to go- and next time, I might just bring Mac, my song bird, along. Diva of Darkness said it was okay, so that should be fun too!

Loved it! Oh, what a night!

(tomorrow is Part III- how I shocked Farrago twice, the men, the city, and Chinatown)

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