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Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Best Car-aoke Beta Test, Ever!!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

What do you get when you take KJ Paul, stuff his the back of his Toyota subcompact with a car battery, a power inverter, an FM transmitter, two wireless microphones and a collection of several thousand songs to the streets of San Francisco? You get Car-aoke! Last Sunday KJ Paul and I drove the streets looking for eager victims to test his new roaming song lab. Car-aoke is nothing new to Paul-he has done it before-yet with the recent addition of an FM transmitter it is now possible to follow the live radio broadcast from within a one block radius. The next step is to have several cars follow in a convoy with their radios tuned to the same frequency, while people sing their favorite Karaoke songs. This can happen while driving, or while parked in front of, say, a bar or a park. Imagine: live Karaoke at Dolores Park or Washington Square Park on a Saturday or Sunday. How much fun would that be? 

Thanks to those whose voices helped to bring this concept one step closer to production--Alabaster and friend, Spalding, and the random guy walking his dog. It was a good test and great fun and I can hardly wait for the next one. Anyhoo, stay tuned for more KJ Paul Car-aoke, coming soon to a street corner near you!

For more information on Car-aoke or other Karaoke events, please join Ash Wednesday Karaoke Insider's Group on Facebook, or visit KJ Paul Dot Com.

Related article: Live from Caffeinated Comics

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Stunt Niner Smacks into The Swingin Door

Friday, May 21, 2010

There is a little bar in San Mateo called The Swinging Door. The Friday night home of KJ Roger Niner. A few friends and I had ventured to SMC from San Francisco last Friday night to experience the action at the Swinging Door, which I had heard was good time down in the Peninsula. It's always a good thing to see the Niner in action, however, good ol' Roge was on a much needed holiday in Iceland with his Nordic babe Lala, so in his place was his 1978 era stunt double, KJ Paul. If you compare photos of these two legends you would swear that one is the spitting image of the other. That is, if you were looking at  both photos through a magnifying glass while pummeling concrete with a jackhammer.

Since Roger is the man I will briefly describe the karaoke action last Friday night. Okay, are you ready? Here it is.

It was fun.
KJ Paul is a good stunt Niner.
Susan, Robert, and Sarah are siblings.
There were some very good singers.

Did you think I was joking when I said it would be brief?  I reserve the right to write a more detailed blog about the Swinging Door when Roger Niner is back in full force. Until then, please enjoy some of the photos I took from last Friday. To view more photos, please join Ash Wednesday Karaoke Insider's Group on Facebook. Cheers.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Doing Double Duty at Deco

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Food coma and a comfortable bed almost got the best of me last Thursday. It was way too early to go out but I needed to leave my house, otherwise it would have been game over for the night. So, I forced myself into the shower and out the door and arrived to Deco thirty minutes early. KJ Paul and Scott were in full setup mode and Karaoke carnage was strewn everywhere. It looked like the back stage of a Hedwig play. While the guys scrambled to make their start time, I sat back with my Bitters and Soda and waited patiently for the fun to begin. Paul and Scott were probably thinking to themselves "Ash, you Lazy F*ck, why don't you lend us a hand?" Feeling guilty, I asked what I could do to help. "We need a microphone check." Another phrase for "sing something." Cool. Let's see... Okay, how about "She Talks to Angels?" Good song for a sound check. Then they asked me to sing another song to get all the Mics ready. Sweet! Need more help? No worries, I'm you're guy!

Within twenty minutes everything had fallen into place. The KJ's were ready. Sound system, check. Costumes, check. Scott as "Stunt Paul" for the evening, check. KJ Paul--the master of Saturday Karaoke at Caffeinated Comics--was a quasi-patron and, like many people on that night had become taken their alter ego. The enormous Goodwill clothing rack of costumes and Deco's par-for-the-course flamboyance meant that fun would be mandatory. No getting around that order as everyone had a great time singing and celebrating the performances of their friends and strangers. The only sour part of the evening was when somebody walked off with my Tambourine. I guess they wanted it so badly that they stole it. Freakin' Douchebag Loser! I just need to keep telling myself that most people are honest enough to trust with my musical instruments...

All in all, it was fantastic evening. Nina, Ginger and Derron were among the many Karaokista's who filled the bar with song and laughter. And kudos to the Dynamic KJ Duo of Paul and Scott who made it all possible. Good times, folks. Good times...

Related article:

Monday, May 24, 2010

Cat Club: In the Lion's Den

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

There is no better feeling in Karaoke than having a great sound system backing your vocals. The Cat Club has arguably the best sound system of any Karaoke joint in The City. KJ Bruce Rogers--a master of sound engineering--gets the sound right every time. I've never had a problem hearing my song when Bruce is around.

So, Wednesday night, 9pm to 2am, cheap yet stiff drinks, friendly people, a large space well known for 80's nights, and a friendly staff that makes you feel very welcome. Put it all together and you've got the Cat Club.

It has been a while since my last visit to the Cat Club. Since then, some new faces with good voices and an updated song list promised to add more fun and excitement to the evening. For some reason I felt nervous. After Rachel brought me a glass of soda and bitters--love ya' Rachel--my nerves settled down and it was time to sing. Yesss! Did I mention how much I love the sound system? It's awesome! Everyone sounded great, even those people who didn't think they could sing were pleasantly surprised. It's all about what you can hear Essay!

Let me give special mention to a few people whose performances I can remember from that night. Rachel and Anneke sang Miranda Lambert's "Gunpowder and Lead"; Patrick performed a song from "La Boheme" but I can remember the exact song. He did it well; Sam sang a hybrid of Public Enemy's "Bring The Noise"; Janny and I harmonized to "Wild Horses", which is my new, favorite Karoake song.

Another successful night at the Cat Club. Good people, great music, good times. Thanks Friends. You can bet I'll be back more often. Cheers!

Related article:

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Live from Caffienated Comics

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Updated on 5.23.10: KJ Paul has added the afternoon's playlist on his website. Check out for more info.

We're here at Caffeinated Comics with my friends Paul, Scott, George, Tanya, and Rob. David Pinch is the Owner/Barista host of CaffCom and who just cranked out "Total Eclipse of the Heart" by Bonnie Tyler.

KJ Paul sang "Against The Wind" and I just rattled off "All Right Now". Scott and Tanya are duet-ing Cheryl Crow and Kid Rock's "Picture".as I write this sentence...

Scott now singing Deep Blue Something's "Breakfast At Tiffany's". Where are you? Bring yourselves down to CaffCom, have a tea and sing some songs...

Paul is up again with Elton John's "Tonight".
George on the Elton John rock block with "Someone Saved My Life Tonight" with an apparent case of Blue Balls...
Il Duce doing "Saturday Night's All Right for Fighting".
A short break to resolve a technical issue.
Back to the live action with Rob Il Duce singing "Daniel". He still looks like Il Duce.
A silky smooth George sings "Sister Golden Hair". Now David sings "If You Could Read My Mind", by Gordon Lightfoot. I think it's time for another Rock Block. Yaz perhaps? Kenny Rogers?

It's been decided. We're doing a Culture Club rock block!!!
Kitty sang "Pineapple Head". Ben sang Cream's "Sunshine of Your Love". AW sang Audioslave's "Show Me How to Live". Tanya sings Chapman's "Fast Car".

It's rock blocks featuring Culture Club then The Beatles. Nino George opens with "Time". Scott biting his nails to Kharma Chameleon... or is he playing the air harmonica?

Kitty sings "Use Someobody" from Kings of Leon. I think there is a glitch in the rock block...
Meanwhile, my blogger app is acting screwy. My photos will now be out of sync with my posts. No worries, you get the gist, right? Up again is George with "A Day in the Life". Come together sucks as a Karaoke song; it's too slow in my opinion.

Now uploading additional photos to Ash Wednesday Karaoke Insider's Group, on Facebook.

Just completed The Beatles' Rock Block. Now for the closing songs. CaffCom Karaoke almost done for May. It was so much fun. Sad :-(

And so concludes another chapter of Caffeinated Comics. But not before George and Scott duet Cat Stevens' "Please Come to Boston". It was a very good afternoon and we wish you could have been here. But in the end, it just meant more chances for us to sing. Maybe next time, fellow Karaokista's!

The Knockout Delivers A One-Two Punch

Monday, May 17, 2010

Monday. The most dreaded day of the week. Most of us hate the word because it reminds us of how much we  hate our jobs. Sacrificing a third of my day in order to make some A-hole rich while earning a mediocre salary is one of my favorite pastimes. Yeah, Woo-hoo! Sign me up! Sure, I would rather have rectal cancer but not all of us get to live our dreams. However, for those who can survive Monday's corporate ass punishment there is a reward...

The Knockout Monday Night Karaoke

What better way to bleed off some workday steam then singing Karaoke? At The Knockout this happens every Monday from 7pm to 9pm, and a special 7pm to 2am sing-along one Monday, per month. On this special evening, the awesome KJ duo of Bobby and John delivered the entertainment to a rotation that was anywhere from five to ten people all night long. The sound system is set up for bands and DJ's, so configuring the system for Karaoke is a no-brainer. In short, you will hear yourself on stage. John makes sure of that.

Paul, Scott, George, and I spent the first part of the evening taking turns singing amongst ourselves, while Claudia, Melissa, and Ed joined the party a couple hours later. Everyone had picked the right songs to compliment their wonderful voices. Scott and I harmonized to The Stones' "Wild Horses" and for the first time in my life, I realized just how amazing that song it really is. Melissa's seamless rendition of Alanis Morissette's "You Oughtta' Know" and Thea's killer "Spellbound" by Siouxsie and The Banhsees" rocked the house! These ladies Kick Ass!

For me, the best part of the evening was watching the bartender, Tracy--normally a shy gal on stage--out there giving her all with her much improved vocal chops. She certainly has come out of her shell, now we can barely keep her off the stage. Go Tracy! But where was Charlie? I'm sure he would have loved to see you up there on the stage, kicking some Karaoke ass!

To John, the owner of The Knockout, Dude, your club rules! I love singing here and will come back more often. Next time I'll bring even more friends! And let us all know when you get the Alt-80's night up and running. Can't wait to dance to some Dark Wave!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I'm On A Boat M*th*F*cka! 2010 SFKM Karaoke Prom

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Damn! This was one of the most fun Karaoke events of the year! On a boat in San Francisco Bay singing Karaoke, can it get any better? Actually, yes. The event: The 2010 San Francisco Karaoke Mafia Karaoke Prom. In attendance: Many members of the Karaoke Mafia, including no other than our generously clad, yet gracious hostess Glenora Kravitz, from the California Chapter of the Colorado City FLDS! Sister Glenn's unwavering devotion to musical polyamory is legendary within the boating community.

We arrived to Jack London Square at 7pm, and several minutes later were cruising the bay. Everyone had dressed fabulously; guys in their suits, gals in their prom dresses, and one guy who wore his gym shorts over his tuxedo. Was he in a rush to get to the prom? Jocks and Cheerleaders on one side, Stoners and Geeks on the other--A maritime version West Side Story! Nevertheless, a truce was agreed upon by the warring factions for the sake of the Prom. No ambush attacks on this night. Song battles would be the decider.

Matt and Mafia Don Glenny Kravitz Loggins-Messina sang The Lonely Island's "I'm on A Boat". Yeah, f*ck with the Mafia and see what happens. Next, a group of cheerleaders commandeered the stage to perform "Hey Mickey" and I swear that Amy had channelled the spirit of Toni Basil! A Jock named Rob tried to pick up Heidi from his nemesis social group, which in turn opened the flood gates to a hugging fest of epic proportions. Meanwhile, The Don's Lieutenant, Ken "The Fixer"  FateLucci, charmed the ladies. Not to be outdone, that guy wearing the gym shorts over his pants, that was none other than Mo "The Maestro" DJiossi. Matt "The Mattson" Mattelano was the muscle while his gal Nara glowered at him for being all work and no play... Some people noticed the abundance of Mafiosi in the room, and had called the Navy to intervene. Admiral Lindsay and her fleet of warships had arrived in time to keep the "The Family" in check.

Alabaster and Kelsey had flown in from The Cotton Club to celebrate with their old friends. I was lucky enough to sneak a photo with the beautiful Jennifer, a.k.a. Ginger McKenna while her man Ace was out takin' a leak. Michelle was not affected by all the commotion and sang blissfully, while D.a.--a master of the faux-guitar--had the crowd foaming at the mouth with his incredible air-riffs. Bruce and Janny came to sing, and Janny invited me to sing harmony to her lead vox in Oasis' "Wonderwall". And finally, Tana led the Cheerleaders in a rally that had the crowd on it's feet.

Sadly, the 2010 SFKM Karaoke Prom had to end. Many people, starry-eyed and exhausted, had plans to crash a house parties, while others tried to sneak into a bar for some drinks. One couple was spotted near MLK getting it on in the back the guy's father's car. Ahhh, the joys of youth...