The existence of karaoke is probably one of my top 5 things in the world, ever. Musicals in my top 20. Combined, they are unstoppable.
I’m no stranger to singing musical songs on the karaoke machine, in fact in university I held a karaoke event exclusively dedicated to musicals, and I dare say in my British accent that it was “bloody good”.
What musical belters make the best karaoke songs though? Let me take you on a journey of the best musical tracks of all time that are fantastic for karaoke, sober or drunk.
To note: I love musicals, and my knowledge is growing, however I’m perhaps not as well-versed as a lot of you. The one thing I do know about? Karaoke.
10. All American Prophet – Book of Mormon
Despite having a rocky relationship with Book of Mormon at the moment due to the way it handles race, when I went to watch it in Manchester this song stood out to me.
All American Prophet is perfect because there are plenty of parts to sing with friends, it has a good beat, if you know all of the words it gives you a time to shine, and if not you can always just play Elder Cunningham!
9. Seasons of Love – Rent
Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes is just one of the best lyrics in musical theatre ever – and most people know it! The song is iconic!
Its uplifting tune and melodies also allow for you to show off your vocal skills, if that’s your bag.
8. What’d I Miss – Hamilton
What’d I Miss is full of drama and arrogance from the infamous Thomas Jefferson.
The song is just fun! You can sing it with friends, show off your vocal skills but also act simply stylish and arrogant, sing and move like someone returning home after being a successful ambassador to France.
7. Games I Play – Falsettos
With no doubt, Falsettos is personally my favourite musical to date so I naturally wanted to feature a song here. I decided it would be Games I Play, one of Whizzer’s two solo ballads, where he talks about a lifestyle that perhaps relates to all of us at some point.
It’s a painful, melancholy and almost funny reflection on his character. It makes for a fantastic karaoke song for that reason.
6. Cell Block Tango – Chicago
One of my favourite karaoke songs to sing ever with aloof theatre feminists.
It has it all: drama, an iconic reputation, sexiness and awesome women. You can have fun with emoting the girls and embracing their backstories.
5. We Both Reached for the Gun – Chicago
I’m always a fan of singing something that builds in tempo and the build up towards the end of We Both Reached for the Gun is perfect. To master when to sing “oh yes”, “they both” and “the gun” at such a fast past makes you look super impressive too!
Apart from that, the song is campy and really fun! It gives room for you to make funny voices and really mess around with it.
4. Touch-A, Touch-A, Touch Me – The Rocky Horror Picture Show
This really is a great song to sing at karaoke, and perhaps a classic. You can have fun with sounding super feminine like Janet if you wish, or you can just stick to the weird voices of the chorus. It’s somewhat taboo, which is exciting.
It also can be liberating! If you prefer to express your sexuality in that way it can be a fun song that allows you to really yell about it.
3. No Good Deed – Wicked
I’ve known about Wicked for years, but I only started to listen to tracks other than Defying Gravity whilst doing my research for this blog, that research led me to No Good Deed.
The score is incredible, the lyrics are fantastic, the mood is great, Idina’s voice is incredible here. There’s immediately a feeling for me that this would be such a captivating song to sing at a karaoke night.
2. Mamma Mia – Mamma Mia! the Musical
I would always say, personally, that ABBA wins karaoke. So the fact that Mamma Mia! is a musical allows a song from it to immediately make the list.
Mamma Mia is almost a song that people universally know and are able to sing, how openly they enjoy it can differ from person to person, but ABBA will have a lot of people singing, always.
Mamma Mia in particular has great lyrics, tenderness and a moody, catchy rhythm that really does bring everyone together.
1. Summer Nights – Grease
I can hear your dismay now that a song from Grease of all places has made the top of this list, let me elaborate.
Firstly, you will never experience a high that matches screaming out “THOSSSSEEEE SUMMMMMMMMMMERRRR NIIIIIIIIIIIGGGGGHHHHHTTTTTTSSS” with your friends at a bar, whether it’s karaoke or not. The whole song is universally enjoyable, campy and iconic. It brings the weight of community when you sing it.
Alongside that, it has incredible highs and lows and you are absolutely able to duet it with a friend or even your partner!
Well, that’s it! What are your favourite musical tracks to sing on the machine?