That's why they created karaoke machines that flash the words on
And that's one reason why the pub pastime continues to be popular.
There's little pressure to remember lyrics and tunes. Stage presence
and energy are generally valued more than vocal talent.
Karaoke has long been the great musical equalizer. Now, one
restaurant and bar also gives amateur singers a chance to live out
their rock star dreams.
Twice a week at La Cave Restaurant in Costa Mesa, bar-goers step
on stage to be the lead singer of the Orange County band, Cover Me
Badd, as it performs some of music's greatest hits.
"We get quite a range of people," said Rod Scheuerman, the Newport
Beach guitarist known as Cover. "You get the crazy ones who don't
know how to sing. Then there are the talented people who know the
song. It's a novelty for everyone, because they've never played with
Scheuerman plays along with drummer Ben Klein (Me) and bassist and
pianist Nate Kazas (Badd). They have a list of more than 50 rock
anthems from the 1970s through the present day.
Like most everything in the karaoke world, the band's name is a
take off; theirs paying homage to the vocal group Color Me Badd.
They've played songs such as "Pour Some Sugar on Me" and "Girls
Just Want to Have Fun" more times than they'd like to count. They've
had girls sing with them, guys sing with them, mixed groups on stage
with them and people who have no business singing sing with them.
"We don't care if they mess up," Scheuerman said. "Sometimes
they'll walk off stage during the performance, and we'll just finish
the song for them."
The band started about a month ago at La Cave when manager David
Scott needed a fill-in for the usual karaoke night. He said the
experiment has led to increased business to his steak and seafood
Rock karaoke hasn't caught on to the mainstream, but for those who
are interested in the traditional form, there are plenty of options
At Costa Mesa's Detroit Bar, those looking to try out their vocal
chords come on Sunday nights. Regulars are familiar with Kelli Groh,
a karaoke regular who runs the show.