Did you know the word "karaoke" is a combination of two Japanese words which translate in English to "empty orchestra"?
Yes, the Japanese must have a different interpretation of the purpose and aim of a night of karaoke than us amateur singers of South Florida. If we were to smash two Japanese words together to describe the hobby of going out and attempting to sing songs by reading words on a screen, we would pick "drunken fun" or "shameless shrieking."
There are a multitude of places in Broward and Palm Beach Counties that, with the magic of a karaoke machine, allow you the chance to prove you're as talented as Mariah Carey or as shameless as Miley Cyrus. Here are the ten best karaoke nights, all of which have Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" ready for you to belt out at the push of a button.
10. Tuesday nights at O'Malley's Sports Bar
This Margate bar gives karaoke singers the greatest gift: a free drink. Hosted by Marioke, O'Malley's has drink specials every Tuesday night and also keeps the full kitchen open — so if you're feeling creative, you can bring food onstage as a karaoke prop.
9. Every night at Shout Kraoke (starting again in January 2017)
This West Palm venue is the Mecca for karaoke in South Florida. Named by New Times as the best karaoke bar in 2016, it has a main bar that allows superstars to show off in front of a loud crowd. They also have options for the shy karaoke singers to cut loose with eight private rooms. The only reason it doesn't top the list is it's closed for renovation until January 2017.
8. Wednesday nights at Inkwell Pub
Hidden in a Margate strip mall is the opportunity to earn a free sake bomb if you sing karaoke on a Wednesday night. Another bonus is the wide selection of craft beers and board games available if you're looking to distract yourself until you take over the small singing space.
7. Tuesday nights at Boca Resto Lounge
Every Tuesday night from 7 to 10 p.m., this Boca Raton place serves up Karaoke with Hal. There's inside and outdoor seating incase your nerves need some fresh air. Every night features wine, beer, and food specials — and the best singers can win gift prizes.
6. Wednesday nights at Murphy's Tavern
Every Wednesday night from 6:30 p.m. to close at 1 a.m., this Fort Lauderdale Irish pub lets you try your hand at karaoke. There is traditional American bar food on the menu in addition to Irish fare, which might inspire you to sing Van Morrison, U2, or Sinead O'Connor.