November 12, 2019
Want to host a super fun karaoke night in the comfort of your own living room? Here's how.
Do you ever dream of being a pop star or a famous country singer? *raises hand*...same.
There's a reason karaoke is so insanely popular—you don't have to be a great singer or a music expert to feel like a celebrity. But for some, there's a serious drawback: singing in public. Back in the day, doing karaoke often meant performing at a bar in front of a bunch of strangers.
Nowadays, many places offer private karaoke rooms, so that you can have a more intimate night out with your friends or family. But if privacy and comfort are what you're after, why bother going out at all? There's a lot of technology available to help you throw a top-notch karaoke party in the comfort of your own living room! Here's how:
Hand Pick Your Guests
A great party starts with a great guest list. When putting yours together, ask yourself what kind of evening you want to have. For a relaxed, laid-back vibe, keep it small with close friends or roommates. Got kids? Perfect! Karaoke can be a wonderful family activity, and there are plenty of apps available for youngsters like Karaoke For Kids. Want to have a few drinks and let your hair down? Invite your college besties or those office colleagues who know how to have a fun time. Just make sure to warn your neighbors about the decibel levels beforehand (that is, if you don't invite them to join).
Here's the big question: do you need a karaoke machine to host a karaoke night? The answer is no, you don't need one, but it can provide a nice shortcut. Many systems include microphones, built-in speakers and video monitors, so they're pretty much plug-and-go. However, setting up your own system provides more options and flexibility. You can decide what kinds of microphones to purchase, if you want wireless or Bluetooth speakers or if you want to include amps or mixers, etc. But no matter how you tailor your equipment, a successful karaoke night depends on powerful WiFi. Once the fun gets going, the last thing you want is an A-plus performance getting interrupted by a poor signal, so check and make sure your Cox wifi router is ready for top speed.
Build Your Library
Having the right selection of songs can really make or break any party, so you need a wide array of genres by popular artists. Some karaoke machines include a small library, but this can be limiting. Luckily it's super easy to expand your repertoire. All you need is a streaming device, like the Contour Stream Player, which connects wirelessly to your speakers using Bluetooth technology. Then you can join a monthly karaoke subscription like Cox On Demand's Stingray Karaoke. This incredibly affordable option provides you with over 10,000 songs complete with video and scrolling lyrics, and it's super easy to access! Simply say “Stingray Karaoke" into your Contour Voice Remote, and you'll have tons of ready-to-sing playlists at your fingertips.
Choose Your Adventure
Now that you've got the logistics figured out, how do you format your party? For a classic approach, select a single DJ to host and make sure everyone in the group gets a turn. Alternatively you can break into teams and sing with your peers, which is perfect for guests who don't love the spotlight. For a wild bout of silliness, try a Charades-style approach; ask each guest to write down a musical genre on a piece of paper and put it in a bowl. Each performer will select at random and must sing a song from whatever category they picked!
Eat, Drink and Be Merry
The nice thing about karaoke is that people take turns, so there's plenty of time to eat, drink and connect. For a family affair, try serving kid-friendly finger foods like sliced apples or homemade mozzarella sticks. If you want to impress those work colleagues, craft your own on-theme cocktail (Ginny Hendrix' anyone?!). Serve alongside these rosemary roasted nuts and you've got yourself a party! Just make sure that whatever you offer is easy to eat, so that your guests can focus on what's most important: having a blast with people they care about.