Tales of a Drunken Singer|
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|Sunday, March 13th, 2011|
|Friday, March 11th, 2011|
|Know Your Modern Day Drunken Singer In 10 Minutes or Less!
After careful consideration I've decided to bring the blog back from the depths of the internet and keep it ongoing in lieu of episodes of my (now terminated) podcast, Pieces of Flaher
. But let's not start this story there ...
Not a whole lot has happened to your pal, The Drunken Singer; plenty has happened to the man-behind-the-drunkard: so to speak. I'll talk about the behind the scenes details first.
Spring 2009 - I took up with a non-profit called Veterans Green Jobs
and the next couple of months (April 12 - June 6) I spent time down in the San Luis Valley of Colorado learning how to become a Home Energy Auditor
. I was also vying for a position at the national headquarters for the organization in Denver. But first, a stop in Indiana ...
Summer 2009 - Well, this is also lumping in a bit of late Spring still. First on the roster was my cousin Jamie's wedding. I helped photograph the wedding with my Uncle Kevin
. I'd say I spent most of this time playing World of Warcraft and gaining more weight. I was hesitant to look for a job because I was basically on standby with VGJ and never knew when the call would come for me to bring my ass back out west. I can't exactly recall what happened that summer other than a few key events. I had happy times and sad times. I got to spend my birthday at Holiday World
. Then in early August I received the call that would set things in-motion for me to head out West again.
Fall 2009 - I got to Denver and started working at the national office of VGJ. I went to some meetings, put together a few projects, ruffled some feathers, and got relocated back to the San Luis Valley where I would be doing hard labor: weatherizing homes. So basically I was in Denver from Aug 15 - Oct 1. I hit the ground in Alamosa where a friend from the VGJ training program, Steve, let me sleep at his place. He had already invited another friend who was affectionately referred to by me as "Other Steve." Other Steve got to sleep on the couch and I made my home a little patch of floor in Steve's bedroom. We stayed in this crummy, run-down apartment for a month in this arrangement. Then we moved to a two-bedroom where I got the master. You better goddamn believe that after a month on the floor I was gonna call dibs on the master. Thanksgiving came soon enough, and with it a case of the blues -- bad. I think it was around this time that I picked up playing World of Warcraft again to help me get through the times I had fallen upon. Working 10 hr. days of hard, monotonous work was not for a fellow of my disposition. I have nothing against hard work and I sure as shit am not averse to it, however I possess an intellect that helps open doors for me ...
Winter 2010 - After my visit to Indiana to see my family for the Christmas holiday, I was now working in the office at the Veterans Green Jobs San Luis Valley Weatherization Service, or VGJSLVWS for short ;) I still maintained my online gaming as my chief source of escaping reality. I had met a few friends who worked for a GREAT non-prof in the SLV, La Puente
--they are a mission that dedicates themselves to serving the needy in the valley as well as migrant workers who toil in the potato fields each year-- who hires AmeriCorps volunteers to run their operations. So it was a lot of female, recent college grads. I saw these folks from time to time and they were always nice to me. But my blues had a pretty firm grip on me during this time. It was around Valentine's Day weekend when my friend Nick came to visit me from where he was set-up in Durango. We decided to go out to the one bar where youngsters gather in Alamosa: Weekends. There I bumped into a group of the La Puente volunteers, and subsequently met the next best friend I would have in my life, a man dressed similarly to me this evening --pair of jeans, some worn-in shoes, a men's sport jacket, and a SERIOUS beard (although my facial hair was an attempt at the mustache that connects to sideburns; not my best look)-- and his name was Corey.
Spring 2010 - I think that St. Patrick's Day is a fine time to begin the Spring; it sits well with my mind and soul. This would be the next night I bump into Corey. It would be closer to Summer before I would really get to know him better. I spent more time with Nick and around April he moved in as my temporary roommate while he had to bounce around a lot and do several things. Having Nick around helped me A LOT, and I doubt I'll ever be able to thank him properly for it. In this season some major things happened: I got my medical marijuana card for Colorado, I gave up online gaming, and I attempted to start a running club that would just as quickly be usurped by scheduling conflicts for community softball season. Softball wasn't a bad thing, though I wish the running club had taken off; softball still brought good times. I had a teensy crush on a volunteer (teensy was meant to be sarcastic to anyone who knew me during these days) and this was my once to twice a week way to get to try and talk to her. I'm horrible with women and have plenty to learn from here on, but I chalk this particular lady up to learning and I drive on. The blues were creeping in still; often I felt hopeless and that I was never going to find a woman in Alamosa, CO. I liked the area just fine, but the only single girls were in college --and they sort of kept to themselves at house parties so I'd never meet them-- or they were divorced. Where were the women in their mid to late twenties? Those thoughts whirred around and round in my head until my whole world looked as though a dreary blue shade had been cast over it. Don't lose heart for me yet; this tale has somewhat of a happy ending. As I mentioned before, Nick brought me out of it, and soon there would be some Ducks that would save me from drowning in the torrid waters of my life at this time.
Summer 2010 - The best summer I had had in many many years was now upon me. Nick left me in July for his travels out East and I was left in the capable hands of Corey. But where should I start this telling of this summer? I feel like being minimalist but owe this summer as many words as have already been written in this post so far! Sigh. I'd love to regale you with the tales of sitting on the porch on a hot day with a cold beer playing guitar and singing to anyone who walked by en route to Summerfest where soon Corey and I would become so inebriated that we would have a struggle not falling over on our short walks home. I want to tell you about the BEST LIVE SHOW that was put on by Ben Miller Band
at a bar called The Tommyknocker Tavern
; how five great pals got together to have one of the best nights of their adult lives; the glow-stick-bursting, men-locked-in-bathroom-together, roof-top-star-gazing, game-room-bang-bang-making, secret-staircase-band-viewing-area moments of this night! I wish I had the time to go on and on about watching sunsets out on the ranch night after night. I could share the short tale about finding a "stray" cat that turned out to be not-so-stray at all --which brought blues on-- which led to me driving to an animal shelter in Pagosa Springs to adopt a kitten of my own, then finding a new home for this kitty after a week, and ultimately adopting the best dog a man could ever have! I'd like to tell you about how my car troubles in Colorado Springs opened a door for me to participate in the Crawl For Cancer
, thusly meeting my newest love-interest. Oh how I want to tell you of ALL the great moments from this summer but they are so many, so vast, so lengthy that it would be rude of me to take up that much of your time. So let's get this ride winding down a bit for the cooler weather around the corner. (Ah, the rafting!)
Fall 2010 - Of course after such an amazing Summer, the lot of us did what we could to not let ourselves get too depressed as the season was escaping our clutches: Oh! How we did clutch it! It wouldn't take much time before my blues came along again. Slowly but surely the mighty group of us --known to each other as Swamp Ducks-- began to part ways. My eyes are filled with sadness as I type these passages. Sigh. Nick met a lady at the FIBArk Festival in Salida that summer; he soon set out for California to be with her. Corey settled in closer to his lady-friend --I know he tried to not let that build a rift between us, but I know if roles were reversed I would do the same-- and it was rare I had time to spend with him. Similarly his lady-friend was inadvertently building the same type of rift between the other Lady Duck of our group. Then Ted left us to go back to North Carolina; I had to act as though it wasn't a sad time, but it truly was. We all knew that just around the corner would be the end of the volunteer rotation of our Lady Swamp Ducks and it saddened us as well. I don't believe I dressed up or did anything at all for Halloween --one of my favorite holidays to get cheered up by-- other than carve a pumpkin and pass out a few pieces of candy. During this season I met with a good friend of mine in Denver, a fellow Iraq veteran, who urged me to pull up stakes from the Valley and head on up to Denver to go back to school. It was just the mission I needed in my life. He also suggested I go see the counselors at the VA to see if they can do anything about that pesky color that keeps stalking me about like an owl would a field mouse at night. Yes, this season brought in some MAJOR changes in my life and got me where I am now.
Winter 2010 - As this season approaches it's end (don't forget, it's St. Patrick's Day that ushers in Spring) I find myself in a bit of a better place. I have the desire to tell you honestly that I don't have the blues anymore, that women love my company and can't get enough of me, or that I've lost plenty of weight and have a better self-image but those things simply are not true (and I am an honest man). I can tell you that I feel as though I'm on the upswing and have a feeling that this Spring and Fall will bring great times and stories as well; I have given up any notion that this coming Summer could ever compare to last year. I moved to Denver on January 15th and began classes promptly on the 18th. I've already created some memories here, but I am remiss that I have not seen the lady of my fancy more than I have. This blog is not a place for me to air my laundry for such things as my love life, but it bears mentioning that I have managed to find a way to fuck this up too. I try to keep hanging in there, but I feel the day might be approaching where yet another lady will want nothing more to do with me. This brings the blues my way as well. There's a karaoke bar near my place and I've been going there regularly on Thursday nights. There is something about the random events in any given night of going out to get drunk and sing that intrigue me. So get ready for the next installment of "Tales of a Drinken Singer" where I'll try to relay to you the cast of characters I've already met since being here.
So until next time, you keep doing the reading and I'll keep doing the writing.
|Sunday, December 13th, 2009|
|Tiger Woods Jokes
Eh, so I just thought of this joke and wanted to claim my credit by posting it ...
Q. Why did Tiger Woods cheat on his wife?
A. He was used to doing 18 holes.
|Wednesday, April 8th, 2009|
|Top 10?? AskMen.com's writer can suck my ass ...
I was out the other night and had a mental block trying to find a song to sing. I googled "Top Karaoke Songs" and found this Top 10 list on AskMen.com It is my opinion that the person who assembled this list is a dipshit. I'm going to attempt to critique the article and follow it up with my own Top 10 list for karaoke-bound dudes.
#10 "Born in the U.S.A." Bruce Springsteen
Never mind the political nature of this one, Bruce Springsteen's “Born in the U.S.A.” is a common karaoke song for guys thanks to its anthemic chorus and that recognizable opening keyboard. This is a good choice among the tone-deaf, as it’ll sound just fine if you’re more likely to scream it than sing it.
Critique: This article is basically encouraging guys to get up there and annoy a room full of people with yelling and growling and faux patriotic dribble. I like the Boss as much as the next guy, but this is simply a poor choice of song for karaoke. If the goal for the number ten slot was ease of singing, there are a ton of better songs to pick from.
#9 "You Shook Me All Night Long" AC/DC
Singing any AC/DC song could leave you without a voice for a few days afterwards, but it could be worth it. Trying to duplicate the vocals of Brian Johnson basically forces you to give it 100% -- closed eyes, white-knuckle grip on the microphone and beet red in the face -- so this is usually a great choice.
Critique: Who the fuck wrote this shit?? He sat there and typed up about four reasons why you shouldn't sing this song and capped it off by saying that it was a great choice?!? Unprotected sex can lead to STD's, unexpected pregnancy, HIV, AIDS ... so fuck without condoms because it feels great!! That makes no sense at all. Unless you have that Brian Johnson voice down and really pull it off, NEVER sing AC/DC ... maybe that song about balls would be ok.
#8 "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" The Rolling Stones
If just singing isn’t enough to satisfy your karaoke lust, why not take the opportunity to flop around like Mick Jagger? Many a karaoke night have turned into a Mick Jagger dance-off, and what better place to start than with the karaoke song for guys, “Satisfaction”?
Critique: Well, I don't completely disagree with this song making this list. Most guys can half-ass their way through this tune with little or no problems. Still, there are easier songs out there for guys to tackle. Also, I've never once seen a fucking "Mick Jagger dance-off." I would never return to a bar where such a thing happens. The song choice is safe, but the reason provided by the writer was not a very good one. Maybe something like ... "Rocking the Stones is something we all should try out at some point. The vocals usually lend to a bit of personal innovation and interpretation that you can use to make it your own."
#7 "Sweet Caroline" Neil Diamond
For guys who want to show off their crooning sensitive side, there’s no better way than a soulful rendition of “Sweet Caroline.” This’ll also give you a chance to show off your skills as a roaming lounge singer; you get extra points for crowd participation.
Critique: Of course!! This is the first song on the list that should be a unanimous starter song for any new singers. The vocals are super easy and even a drunk could pull this one off. This could be moved to a number ten slot on a scale that begins with starter songs and ending on harder songs that practically ANYONE could pull off. I don't disagree with this pick much at all.
#6 "Livin' on a Prayer" Bon Jovi
Feeling a little bit more ambitious? This Bon Jovi tune always seems like a good idea right up until you get to the chorus, where you have no choice but to try to reach that ungodly note -- “Whoa-HO!” Ninety-nine percent of guys can’t even come close, but it doesn’t stop them from trying.
Critique: Once again the author is using a very faulty premise. Yes, crowds of drunks will sing along with this one just about any time it is played. As long as the person on stage has an inkling of charisma, this song can be sold to a room. Simply put: this song is too hard for just anybody to just try out on a whim. There is easier fare out there for ya if you go looking hard enough. "Wanted Dead or Alive" is a much better Bon Jovi replacement.
#5 "Sweet Home Alabama" Lynyrd Skynyrd
Nothing makes for better karaoke than the fake southern drawl required to pull this karaoke song for guys off. The opening riff should be enough to perk up the crowd and get them on your side too. If costumes are required, a sleeveless flannel shirt and torn jeans should do the trick.
Critique: Now the writer is just phoning it in with juvenile comments. Not a bad song pick at all. In fact, in my early days it was one I tried on and rocked it right out of the gates. This song is easy and nearly anyone can pull it off. I think I'd like to put it in my #9 position right after "Sweet Caroline." Try as you might, it's hard to butcher this song; it's also really easy to make you sound great if you know how to handle a mic. Crowds will dig it, drunks will dance, and everyone might just sing along with you. Leave "costumes" out of this and you've got yourself an ace in the hole.
#4 "Friends in Low Places" Garth Brooks
Somehow, this sad-sack tune about a scorned lover made its way to being a karaoke favorite -- then again, any song that sings directly about drinking yourself into a stupor is obvious karaoke fodder. The best part is that the loop-de-loop melody in the chorus is actually easier to sing under the influence.
Critique: Once again, this song is way too high on this list. Bust it down to an 8 or 9 slot and we might be in agreement. Similar to the last song, if you can sing well you can nail this one down pat. If you are just wanting to be on stage for a bit and maybe lead the crowd in a drunken cheer, you won't sound that bad and folks might actually give you a pat on the back. This one can be regional, but pretty much any karaoke bar will accept any rendition of this song. It will make it onto my list. The writer didn't do a bad write-up on it, just put it in the wrong spot considering the rest of this bullshit list.
#3 "Cecilia" Simon & Garfunkel
For guys who head to karaoke nights in an attempt to pick up, this catchy Simon & Garfunkel ditty is a must. It offers a chance to show off the pipes, and sing a little heartbroken love song at the same time. Of course, if you don’t pull it off, chances are you’re heading home alone.
Critique: Maybe on a fucking DARE!! Get real, man. This song is tough no matter who you are. No way does this make a top ten list for karaoke unless it's a list of most risky songs. The risk v. reward ratio here is ridiculously favored toward the risky. "For guys who head to karaoke nights in an attempt to pick up," ... are you serious?? What the fuck, writer?? Better Than Ezra, Goo Goo Dolls, Elton John ... these are all artists that a guy should try to start with if serenading is on the menu. I've sang some songs for gals before and never once did I think of trying to tackle something as lofty as this number. Steer clear of this song unless you're a great singer and you know this song without looking at the monitor.
#2 "Don't Stop Believing" Journey
After experiencing a resurgence in popularity thanks to The Sopranos and The Family Guy, chances are you’ll catch this tune more than once on any given karaoke night. Hell, you’ll even find some people with choreographed routines. The song provides ample opportunities for rock star leg kicks and intense finger-pointing, so it’s sure to bring out the performer in just about anyone who has the guts to try to match Steve Perry’s vocal range.
Critique: Yes, please choose this song if you want to piss off all of the karaoke regulars. This song is overdone and it's usually done in a very shitty manner. This is a safe bet for gals, but guys need to look the other way. Very few guys can nail the Steve Perry tonality, so just pick another one. Try something like "Sister Christian" by Night Ranger at this point in the game. It's just as ironic to sing and people won't be expecting it. If you do happen to do this song, make sure to break out your air guitar and focus on amping up your crowd; your vocals likely won't hold up to carry you through.
#1 "Born to Be Wild" Steppenwolf
It’s repetitive, it doesn’t require a lot of work, and most men associate it with Easy Rider. “Born to Be Wild” is without a doubt the song you’re most likely to see performed by a 45-year-old man wearing aviator shades and a leather vest.
Critique: What a dumb fucking choice for number one. Did this writer just go hang out at a karaoke bar for a week to determine this list?? This song blows, you'll overdo it and get all carried away and end up looking like an asshole. This is not a bad song, but it's not the best of the best. Do this song on a slow night to try to make your friends laugh. This song won't impress anyone ...
Before I assemble my personal top 10, I'm going to want some feedback. I offered some alternatives and reordering of this craptastic list. I'm going to create a Top 10 list that can help a new singer find his/her path to karaoke awesomeness. Hell, I might even make a few lists based on vocal range ...
That's all for now. Just wanted to let you all know how appalled I was by this article ...
|Sunday, February 1st, 2009|
|Down with the Sickness
I'm lying in bed trying to get over this nasty cold I caught. I woke up with it on Friday. Doing the contest tonight is a maybe. It might just have to wait until I get back from Indiana. It was gonna be hard to do it after work anyway. I hope I feel up to going to check out the competition, because the first round might be where it's at. Here's to hoping ...
Posted via LiveJournal.app.
|Thursday, January 29th, 2009|
Well, Brandon and I felt like having a beer and jamming to a few songs tonight so we are at Meadow Muffins enjoying some crappy Blue Moon winter beer. Right now the crowd is slim, with only a few familiar faces.
This is my first time trying to write in real time, and I hope the finished product turns out well. I'm signed up for "Killer Queen" and hope I'm up for it.
A lot has changed for me, the drunken singer, lately. I'm not really "drunken" as much as I used to be. The love for song is still strong as ever and I wantto get a feel for where my vocals are at before the first round of competition this weekend. Well, time to be social ...
Well, the Queen song went over well. People were up dancing and shit, which always makes a singer feel good. I chose a competition worthy song for my next "at bat". It's gonna be " Add It Up" by the Femmes.
During my post song break I got into a conversation about people who always sing the same shit and never break out of that comfort zone. Now, I have a lengthy reportoire and it's hard for me to always find brand new songs to jam. I'll just keep my eats open while listening to pandora to find a bit more inspiration.
It's hard not to sing slow songs when you miss someone ...
Brandon is outside trying to fix his relationship troubles while I'm enjoying all of this beer. Still waiting for my song, thinking about following it up with some Flobots. LOL, guess who just got back! He claims he done with his drama for the night. Hope I can help him with that ...
Ok, he just talked me into my second round that I was gonna forego, two songs just became three for sure ... Damn you bourbon!!!
Now, after a song and a piss break, I'm feeling pretty good. Not a lot of crowd reaction to my last song, but Brandon broke it down for me just the way that I needed to hear it:
"Do you know why you'll always win out agaist a better singer? It's your stage presence."
I don't feel like being modest, because I think he's right, and one of my pals has the Jagermeister machine to prove it. My behavior on stage will always earn me more points with any judge, and it's a valuable asset I possess. Still, I'm nothing without a crowd of griefs cheering me on.
I signed up for some Flobots, so let's see where the night takes me ...
On break I had a conversation about what makes a good karaoke show a great karaoke show. Mostly it hinged on a fast rotation and good singers, nothing beats that.
I made a deal to sing Matchbox 20 if I still have beer left by the time my fourth song comes around, but I really only came out for two; what can I say, I'm a sucker for a night with a fast rotation ...
For the record, I just did a shot of Sambuca and chased it with mustard ...
Holy Fuck!! I just rocked the shit out of some "Handlebars" ... It was damn near surreal! Well, I have shot to do tomorrow and can't rebel in my awesomeness for too long. Maybe I have another potential competition song ...
It's been a much later night than I planned and I'm itching to get home to call my special lady friend. Gimme some feedback on here or facebook to let me know if you dig the new format or not.
If you read this whole thing, just know that I love you and that the more you link a friend to this site the more likely I am to get my own domain for this shit.
Sing from the heart!!!
Posted via LiveJournal.app.
So, I recently got an iPhone and it's been a pretty amazing tool so far. The purchase was definitely worth it, and now I'm trying to see how easy it might be to blog with it. I don't want to go bonkers blogging with it, but maybe I'll step the blog up a notch and post while I'm actually out for a night of singing. Could be much easier to remember certain events and there is a big contest coming up that's worth a trip to vegas if I can manage to win it.
So ... Wish me luck with the real time blogging and a possible trip to Sin City, USA!!!
Posted via LiveJournal.app.
|Tuesday, September 30th, 2008|
|Experiencing "The Moment"
There's been a recent phenomenon that I've been wanting to mention, or explain in more detail. It's something that I've experienced, if even just slightly, the past two nights I went out to sing. I simply call it "The Moment", or maybe just "A Moment". It's a great rush, and I almost think it's the high that I'm constantly chasing when I go out. Certain feelings or events must align to truly launch me into a moment, and I want to take a little time to talk about it.
Lately I've been anticipating Megan's return to Colorado Springs. I've only really done karaoke for her once before. She had seen me sing once before, but it was different when she and I went to Quinn's one night after a movie. Having the connection that I knew that she knew I was singing for her was a great feeling. I think I sang better, and I think somehow she felt good during those songs too. I think it can be quite alluring when someone serenades you. Hopefully I can start writing my own songs and delve into this whole open mic experience too. Nothing is more raw than your own words and melodies coming together to honor and celebrate a person.
I have been "practicing" some tunes for when Megan comes back. Last Wednesday my friends Katie and Lauren came out to join me for a few drinks and some karaoke. I signed up for a Better Than Ezra song and asked Kitty to pick which one she wanted to hear, because either would be good for me and my mood. She chose "Desperately Wanting". While I was singing, I started slipping more and more into the moment. The words really started to mean something to me, and I channeled my emotions through my entire being while I was singing. This is one qualification for the moment. The bridge, especially, drew me into the moment more; "Take back your life/ and let me inside/ we'll find the door/ if you care/ if you care to anymore". Then the chorus reprises and I was gone. The movements I make are unknown to me, and I am just on complete autosinger. When the final screen pops up, I snap back into reality. Had I done well? Did I look foolish? Did I connect with the room? None of these things really mattered, because I just got finished feeling amazing for a few short moments. Song selection is probably key, but I'm sure that any song can provide me a moment, if other factors align.
I got another moment last night when I was out. I decided to sing "Don't Let Me Down" by the Beatles because it seemed fitting to me. I had a slightly rocky start, but then I decided to just let go and give myself over to the song. This is also essential to having a moment. If I'm always worrying about hitting the right notes or not looking too rigid, then my focus keeps me from relaxing enough to just simply embrace the song. I hit my stride and hit autosinger again. I'm sure I flailed and swayed as the song consumed me. The verse that really sent me into it, was the verse that set up the true passion of the chorus; "I'm in love for the first time/ don't you know it's gonna last/ it's a love that lasts forever/ it's a love that has no past". Subconsciously, or maybe very consciously, I was thinking of Megan. For one of the first times in my life, someone has been important enough to me for those words to feel true as I sang them. When that next chorus of singing "Don't let me down" hit, I was gone and in it. I just let the raw feeling take over me and the results were the high that I call the moment. I wished Megan could have heard it, but I'm sure she soon will. The KJ gave me mad props, and told me that I should try singing some Joe Cocker sometime. I might have to take his advice. I know someone who might really enjoy hearing me sing "You Are So Beautiful" to her sometime.
I'll continue to chase this high, and I hope to see others that are possibly in a moment like this, and ask them about it. I know that Clint agreed with me about it, he too has a lot of passion when he sings. He's a great karaoke friend, and I hope to get to know him more outside of our little singing world, because I'm sure we could learn a lot from each other.
I hope this helped provide some insight into my little world. Maybe it will help people understand why some people like to go out on their regular days and just try to capture that elusive little high that I call "the moment".
|Tuesday, September 23rd, 2008|
|A Reunion & An Impending Demise or A Brief History of the Drunken Singer
Sundays have always been an interesting tradition for me since living in the Springs. My first years of watching football were back at Ft. Carson. I was in the ARMY and I had a few friends to go watch ball with and eat some junk food at the local MWR bar. It wasn't bad, but it paled in comparison to football seasons to come. The ARMY had me in Iraq for a football season once ... that makes it interesting. You basically have to stay up all night to catch your games live. It got to the point that I couldn't sacrifice my sleep to watch my Colts unless they were playing the Patriots or they were in the playoffs. Some nights, I would stay up and watch with some guys at the fuel point because we all put some money into a weekly pool.
After my deployments and my escape from the military, I got to become better friends with Eddie. He had just been a bartender I knew that made drinks the way I like them; with a heavy pour. I was invited to a Christmas bar crawl one year and our friendship sort of picked up from there. I still didn't really have friends or a group to watch ball with, so my level of interest in the game was somewhat waning. I also met Ty this night. The bar crawl was really fun and friendships were forged. Bar Crawls are always on Sundays because most of Eddie's friends are service industry types.
Fast forward now to the point where Eddie asks me to join his $100 Fantasy Football league. Filled with folks I had gotten to know in the off season. I had started hosting the karaoke show at Eddie's bar in Rum Bay. So we would go out on Sundays and Mondays to visit bars since we worked all weekend. The FF cast was a great group of folks. I had no idea how to play FF AT ALL! If anything, during that draft I made a lot of folks laugh their asses off. Who could forget my genius pick of Kurt Warner in the 3rd round?
Sundays became quite ritualistic. Eddie and I would meet up at the Thirsty Parrot to see Adam and Nicole while we did Jager Bombs and ate some eggs. Those morning beers were weird to me at first, but when there's football to be watched, you feel that it's now socially acceptable to be drinking at 11 am. Eddie was a Bears fan and I love the Colts. Both of our teams started out looking good, but I always knew Eddie was jealous of our undefeated streak vs. his off-and-on victories. During this season on our fall bar crawl, I found out that Jack Quinn's had karaoke on Sunday nights. I didn't pay too much mind to it, because I worked weekends as a karaoke host ... it can burn you out. The season was fruitful for both of us. Our teams went to the Super Bowl to face each other! We couldn't watch it together, because Eddie didn't want to feel any hatred toward me the whole time. He went to his favorite bar for Bears games, the Overtime Lounge. It's a fun place for him, so I went over to Tyler's instead.
During the off season, I needed something to fill my Sunday voids, so I chose karaoke at Jack Quinn's. The karaoke show at Rum Bay was under remodeling so I was out of a job for a bit and trying to live off of my GI Bill. I also picked up a job at a liquor store, and at the time they were always closed on Sundays. I was developing my first real addiction to karaoke on a certain day. Quinn's started to become ritualistic to me. I was dating a monster during this off season and systematically destroying the best parts of myself by having her in my life. The singing kept me going. I got fired from my job on my birthday that year. I also decided to finally rid myself of this toxic individual in my life. For her birthday I got her some nice gifts, a cake, and invited people out to help her celebrate the day. The thanks she gave me was to inform me that she had slept with one of my best friends. Her birthday was in February and mine in July ... why did it take me until July?? For my birthday she got me a $2 box of Spider-Man Band-Aids and essentially a couple of eyes filled with tears. My brother and father came out to visit me, and that got to enjoy a full-blown emotional breakdown. Yeah, it was time to get rid of her. But, my birthday comes just before football season starts!!! I even got in a good bar crawl and made some awesome friends before ball started up again.
This season was game on! A true Sunday ritual was going to form up. I couldn't go to the same places as last year because that's where the demon spectated. I found a bar near my house with less people and better TV's. I'd watch my Colts games alone, but inevitably some of my friends would show up to watch with me. Paul's Bar on 8th St. is a nice place to watch football, that's for sure. We'd find a spot to watch the night game, or I'd go off and do my own thing for a bit before karaoke started. I spent a lot more time with my friend Katie. She was there for me a lot in the process of my emotional rebuilding, but behind all of my funny karaoke antics, I was still quite destroyed inside. She brought a couple of friends out a few times and I took a shining to one of them. You can read about her in previous stories on here. I think I liked her because she exhibited the exact opposite behaviors of my previous disaster. Sara had a good head on her shoulders, but ultimately I always knew I could never reciprocate her feelings for me. I wasn't ready to settle in just yet. She was more than welcome to join me in my Sunday night extravaganzas; usually after her homework. These Sunday nights were getting so fun! I'd drink all day watching football and keep the party going while singing. This was right about when your friend The Drunken Singer was born. Before then I was simply a singer. A guy who liked to sing. Former cover band singer. That sort of thing. But now I was an out of control maniac with a microphone and people liked coming out each week to see what I'd do next. Some old 80's songs, some Billy Idol, The Darkness, and whatever else I felt like were commonplace. The good times were never so good.
Soon, through my philosophy club at school a team of rebel karaoke goers emerged: Team Rawsome was born. This team manifested on our post meeting party nights at Thunder & Buttons each Wednesday. Every now and then, some of the team would come out and join me in my Sunday Nights as well. Summer, Mark, Schwinger, and Garett were some of the main forefathers/foremothers of the movement. My CSPD friends would make their appearances as well and the good times kept getting better! I'd drink my fucking face off having fun with all of these people. I had my football, I had my karaoke, I didn't have a pain in the ass woman bringing me down. On most accounts I was feeling happy. The ritual carried on for most of the season. The Colts lost in the playoffs and I could care less about the rest of the teams. I got my ass handed to me in Fantasy so I really could care less. You've heard of how bad postpartum depression can be? Well, post-season depression occurs too. Good thing I still had Wednesdays. I still sang on Sundays, but Wednesdays were when we really partied our asses off.
Team Rawsome kept our karaoke efforts going strong. We even picked up on Tuesday's at the Triple Nickel for a bit. We added Andy to the crew and a few others. A karaoke feud was had between me and newcomer Dean. We gave Schwinger a bitchin' birthday party. Team Rawsome was just ready to make our own shirts! We even developed a cheer, much to the chagrin of other bar patrons, to shout after one of our guys got done singing. Renegade Karaoke at it's best! My problem was that I was taking advantage of that drink special a little too often. Blackouts were becoming a bit too frequent for me. For employment I was trying to sell Saladmaster cookware. I was running out of money. Then the day came that Brandon told me that Joe's Crab Shack was hiring. My serving job has been a true gift in my crappy job rut. Making money made me more drunk.
After the death of my grandfather in May, it was time to move out from Xavior's house. Summer, Ryan, Steve, and I got a new place and wanted to throw a little house party. I was low on money from the moving, so we just had folks bring booze for us. This night was significant for my near future. Schwinger brought a new face to our party. This was the first time I ever set eyes on Megan. I thought she was beautiful, but didn't want to give her credit for much more than that because I was wasted and trying to talk to her most likely wouldn't have worked out in my favor. Mark was there and pretty sober, so I sent him to go and save her from David's frightening drunk ass. I went down to play some video games in the basement with Garett. At some point, Megan and Schwinger came down. Megan told me I had nice feet. I had no response for that, but it made me really happy to hear for some reason. No one had ever said that to me, and I knew it had come out because she wanted to say something
to me. This would be the last time I would see her for almost a month; barring a post-karaoke trip to Denny's in which she offered me up some more compliments.
During June my drinking continued to get a bit out of control. When tequila shots only cost $1 and a pitcher of beer sets you back $0.25 you tend to drink a bit more. The singing was always fun, that hadn't changed. I was more or less falling apart a bit at this point in my life. I kept busy with work and other stuff, but I was truly living for Wednesdays and Sundays. It was summer ... what else was there to do? Fuck trying to be a writer. Fuck trying to accomplish ANY of my goals. I can coast by paying rent and getting shitfaced. Steve and Ryan officially moved in around the 1st of July and it was time for another party. The official housewarming party.
This particular party was to be held on a Sunday. I had my shift at work covered because I went up to Denver to be in the Flobots video for "Rise". It was pretty fun. Afterward we had an impromptu IVAW meeting in Denver discussing our fear of not having a successful action at the Democratic National Convention. I invited Ben to come down to the Springs for the party since I have always enjoyed his company, and that day was no exception. The early party consisted of some Guitar Hero and PBR. It would eventually evolve into the most frivolous fireworks battle I'd ever been in. It was pretty funny how Ben and I essentially became soldiers again to make a well planned attack on Schwinger and Summer, but there just wasn't enough ammo for either side :( At a point during this party, I took Ben outside to have a chat. Now, Megan had come to the party with Schwinger, much to my delight. I had been hearing tales that Mark was trying to date her but he was consistently shot down, poor dude. I was out on the porch, and from outside I could see in and they can't see out. Megan was just kind of looking around in the living room and kitchen area somewhat aimlessly. But I saw something more. She was looking for something. I didn't know what. I almost felt as though she was looking for me. She seemed lonely. So I brought her outside to talk with Ben and me for a bit. I think she shied away because she thought she was boring us with her tales of writing for her school paper at UNC. I was actually interested, and this night was when I knew I really liked this girl.
Now, I have just a bit more to write about the "Brief History" segment of this blog. I am not going to writing about particulars of any relationship I have with someone in my blog. I apologize that my readers don't get the "meat" of everything, but my friends who know me know pretty much all of it. I started taking Megan out in early July. It didn't take me too long to mess it up. I got three strikes pretty promptly. Strike one was essentially me not presenting myself as true dating material because my old lifestyle was not going to be compatible with Megan. Strike two came from me acting like an idiot one night after a bar crawl in which I didn't take my blooming relationship with her seriously. Strike three was essentially the nail in the coffin that sent my personal life into a HUGE downward spiral. All three combined alienated me from friends and roommates. It was time for me to cut the bullshit and change my ways. Too much damage was done. I put Schwinger in an extremely awkward position in all of this because she had more or less vouched for me.
Another month and Megan was kind enough to accept me back. For this, I am forever grateful, but there were still pieces to be picked up. This Sunday I got the opportunity to spend time with Schwinger again. She met me at Jack Quinn's and we got up to sing a song that we had rocked out before. Singing with her brought back my memories of how fun karaoke can be. I'd been in the slump where I was singing mostly ballads and sad songs, but having the taste of the fun stuff was refreshing. After a day of football and light drinking, I still wanted my Sunday night. My friend Jason was in town for the national firefighters memorial weekend and I invited him along to spend my routine Sunday with me. He had a lot of fun too. I felt reunited with Schwinger. The bad news came from Kitty when we first got there. She told us that next Sunday would be the last Sunday that Quinn's would have karaoke. What a drag.
I like making my observations at karaoke. Schwinger and I made an observation that it seemed like a few of these people probably sit in their cars and listen to their songs about 13 times before coming out, and they still don't do an amazing job. There were some good newcomers out that night. The regulars in attendance were just me, Kevin, and Joel. I think we're going to defect to T&B's after the final show at Quinn's. Eddie and Shannon came out too. Later BK and Brandon showed up. Then a bit later Nicole showed up; she's Eddie and Shannon's roomie. Jason made his rounds mingling; a skill of his I wish I had at times. I usually stick to hanging and chatting with folks I already know. BK took to the Snug that he loves to chill in. Eddie, Shannon, and Nicole hung with him most of the time while I sat at a table with Kev and Joel, later joined by Brandon.
Earlier this evening was the last game to be played at Yankee Stadium. Shannon loves the Yankees so she asked me to sing "New York, New York" for her. I changed up some words to mock the stadium being torn down. She tried to wrestle the mic away from me as I bad-mouthed her team's home field. I got back on track for her and we did a bit of a Rockette's-esque kick line to close the song out. This reminded me of how my wit and quick ad-libbing can entertain. I also knew that why I come out is to put a smile on the faces of my friends. I've been going out to karaoke to sing songs to mend my own personal wounds, but I know that nothing can stitch those up faster than knowing that my friends love when I get up there and do a song they want to hear.
I stayed sober enough to drive and Jason told me he had a great night out, and that he really misses me. I think that to protest Quinn's getting rid of karaoke I'm gonna pay some bums to come inside and just jack off in the corner where the karaoke equipment is usually set up; at least until they bring back a staple in my weekly routine. I'll make do at the new place.
Megan is coming back from her stay in North Carolina soon and I can't wait to sing some songs that she wants to hear. I've only had the chance to sing her songs once before. Even though in her absence I stuck to singing songs that I would have liked her to hear me sing. There is change in the air. It's all around me. I'm not going to change the title of this blog even though I'm not the Drunken Singer I once was. I will still get up there and do my thing. I'll make my friends smile. I'll put on some antics for the strangers as well. I'll drink a bit more if there is a special occasion, but the stories will continue.
Welcome to the new Drunken Singer blog. Heh, I guess this writing stuff isn't so hard after all ;)
|Thursday, September 18th, 2008|
|Feeling A Bit of A Slump
Well, I'm back at the keyboard again. Which is odd, because most of my day is spent on my living room couch waiting for something worthwhile to do with my day. I have a list a mile long of shit I should be doing, ...but. ::sigh:: I still find time to get out for some karaoke on Wednesday and Sunday nights. I've been singing more laid back songs lately. Whatever happened to the fire I used to have when I was winning Jagermeister machines? I just have more on my mind now, and it comes across in my song choices.
This past week was met with some weirdness. I got a one week suspension from work for flipping out last Sunday and essentially leaving without permission. Which, to me, was a fine alternative to being held there against my will. When the fuck did a workplace become a prison? I love my job and love being there almost 100% of the time, why couldn't they just flex for me on one night? Oh well, I got a forced vacation ... which has likely led to my sedentary routine of TV and lengthy naps. I need to start running again, but my appetite is so dwindling that I doubt I'd have the energy to run any great lengths. So I sleep and go sing. Weird.
Last night at T&B's was pretty laid back. I went to hang out with Andrew Johnson and sing a few tunes. Kitty had recently won the Best of Colorado Springs award for karaoke hosts from the Independent. That's a pretty nice award to have. So, if you still haven't been out to sing at one of her shows, bring your ass out some time. She's the most fair and funny of them all. I started off with a slow one, mostly because nobody was there, and about a month ago I couldn't stop listening to "Neon Moon" by Brooks & Dunn. It's probably one of my favorite country songs. Of course, any song about unrequited love is going to hit a soft spot with me. Though, I feel that I recently requited a love, but not all the way yet. We'll "requite" soon enough. She's a wonderful human being and I'm glad she chose to stand by me, even if I was a horrible bastard to her.
I went to the restroom and saw that good ol Dean was bartending!! I hadn't seen him in ages, so I bought us both a shot. He's a solid guy and it'll be good to see him out singing again. He said he is tied up for another few weeks and then he'll be back out in the karaoke world again. I wanted to let out some good vocals again, so I went with "The Long and Winding Road" by the Beatles. It's the kind of song that comes to mind when the person you care most about is 1500 miles away. Nobody was really paying attention. The crowd tripled in size yet the level of applause was cut in half. Why? I guess I'm just not amazing enough for these sods.
Time bobbled along and it was time for me to pick one last song for the road. I wanted something heavier to shake the room up a bit. I went with "Zero" by Smashing Pumpkins to close out for the night. Still, not much applause, this time I think Kitty got pissed about it; she does well to get my back if people don't clap. I mean, I'm such a horrible singer and all ... It usually sounds like I'm gargling cow turds, but still ... if you can clap for the girl who sings "Part of Their World" each week, I think you can muster a couple of hand-dustings up for me. Andrew said I had the Billy Corgan bit down, and going out to stand on the ledge to get in their faces helped too. At least they danced.
So, a fun night that led into an uneventful day. I washed my laundry for the first time since before the DNC. I'm such a filthy bastard when I have to be. Then I hit that damned couch and it saps all of my life away. I wanted to clean my room, but that burned me out right after I hung all of my shirts up. I nuked some leftover Chinese food and napped out for a bit. Now I'm just waiting for Andrew to come over so we can watch the Season premiere of "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia" and perhaps a trip into Manitou to check out the Haunted Wind Chimes.
God this blog needs a new name ...
|Friday, September 5th, 2008|
|Winter Soldier @ The Valley Lounge
The place: Minneapolis/Bloomington/Eagan, Minnesota
The occasion: Iraq Veterans Against the War National Convention
After a full day of unwarranted bureaucracy, I needed a wind-down. I know that most of you know of my new stance on drinking, but I hadn't had a good relaxing night of drinking with friends to celebrate our small victory at the DNC. A long road trip certainly needed to be capped off with a night of fun with some new friends. I wanted to be in a state of celebration; I only allow myself to drink past the level of a buzz if there is an occasion to be celebratory ... this was such an occasion. I grabbed up my new pals, Nick Morgan and Matthis Chiroux, to grab a few drinks after day one of the convention.
We started out at the hotel bar for a couple of pints and some food. I made an inquiry to the bar staff; I wanted to know a laid-back place with some karaoke. I was guided to the Valley Lounge. We had the lady at the desk call us a cab and soon we'd be on our way. The cab arrived and the cabbie already seemed pissed off about the fact that our motley crew would be his fare. We set out and Matthis began quoting from the constitution. I don't think the cabbie understood the point. We were still on a high from supporting and defending the document being quoted, but the foreign cabbie may have misunderstood, but that was none of my concern at the time.
We had arrived. It was like a bowling alley bar without the clacking of balls and pins. The crowd was sparce at first, but it was still only 9:30 or so. I signed up for "Revolution" by the Beatles. We commandeered some seats that belonged to what would be a large birthday party. We certainly weren't shy about our affiliation with IVAW. I knew we would end up owning this bar, it would only be a matter of time. We were strangers in a strange land, but we felt more like sons of a golden god sent out to grab our destiny. I took the stage. Neither Nick nor Matthis knew about the Drunken Singer part of my life. I took command of the bar and the emotion was palpable. We had truly arrived.
Before the whole place was able to turn on us, we had some reinforcements en route; the Marines were on their way. Sergio and Vince were coming to join in on the party. Matthis and Nick both sang some good tunes and we took to the crowd as they took to us. One man, named John? offered to buy us beers if we sang him some requests. I offered up some Michael Jackson, but decided to sing a song for my special lady friend who was miles away. I wanted some Billy Vera to assault this crowd, and "At This Moment" would do us all some good. I knew my voice was scratchy from all the shouting from Denver, but this wasn't a night for quality, it was a night for fun times. I rocked my song out as best I could and felt like a success even though I knew better. Since our seats at the birthday table were hijacked, I decided to set up camp at the table of a fellow singer, Shannon. She was a nice 40 or 50 something woman who took us in as her boys.
Part of delaying my writing is the fact that I can't remember as much a week later as I could a day later. I knew I couldn't sing another song in this ridiculous rotation because the KJ refused my offer of a tip to sing again. What a simp. I was out for a smoke when Matthis was rocking "Zombie" by the Cranberries. He expressed his feelings about the war, and offered up to the crowd, "I won't let them turn me in to a zombie ever again!!" It was received with mixed feelings. There were some National Guard boys who didn't dig the message; the time for proselytizing was nigh. One guy I spoke with told me that he just couldn't wait to get back over there to kill some people. I was hurt to hear that. I told him, "Not only has the military trained you to dehumanize the people of Iraq, but they have dehumanized you. When you were growing up, did you want to be a firefighter, an astronaut, or a killer? You are no longer the person you always wanted to be, and I see a problem with that." He nodded along, but some just can't be reached. I truly hope he can survive his deployment, and more so I hope he doesn't take a single life in the process.
I got caught up talking to John's wife. She knew so much about me without knowing me at all. She told me that I have a lot of passion, but the only way it will be received well is if I can find my center and ground myself by doing yoga or running. She's right. I was so caught up with the chat that I hadn't noticed that my group had dispersed. I finally found Sergio, he was hitting on some girls at the other bar. Out of the pocket comes Matthis, which made me ecstatic. Nick went for a motorcycle ride with Shannon and Vince was vomiting outside from a jager-bomb overdose. The cab was on his way; the same cabbie from earlier.
The cabbie didn't want to take us. Matthis sweet-talked him into driving us even though Vince was barfing all over the side of his cab. We figured we'd just give him a good tip and all is fair. Vince couldn't stop yacking out the window during the whole ride. When we arrived at the hotel the cabbie tried to tell us to go and get him a towel. We gave him twelve bucks on a twenty dollar fare, so we weren't too keen on helping him clean Vince's chunks off the side of his car. After the car wash he would still have made more than 20%. I simply went to my room to go to bed.
|Friday, August 22nd, 2008|
So, my roomate Ryan and I went out to T&B's on Wednesday to have a couple of beers and catch up with each other. I rarely see my favorite roomate and it was cool to get to hang with him for a night. I sang a couple of crappy songs and then ended up redeeming myself with some of my quality work. But this particular night had little to nothing to do with singing.
Ryan began to break down to me the intricacies of body language. We would look at couples or groups and decide who liked whom. Leg positioning was crucial. Most people who have studied anything about body language can tell you that this is a key element. We cross arms and legs as a means to be stand-offish and we open ourselves up when we accept someone; this is a key factor in sales, which I used to do. If someone's arms are crossed, you divert attention and get them to open up just long enough to propose what you want from them.
We were having a tough time sizing up some of the cool Pikes Peak Derby Dame girls. It's unfair to assume that they're all lesbians, but when you have a group of counter-culture gals all gathered in one place, you get mixed readings. After Ryan and I made our attempts as sizing them up, I asked Kitty who was indeed straight. She told me some scoop and Ryan and I digressed a bit. One of the gals that I knew was into dudes came up to the bar and Ryan offered her the opportunity to tell us a good bar joke. What she would say completely startled me but made me laugh my ass off at the same. The guilty laughter that can only come from a debauched joke like she told:
"What does a baby in a microwave sound like?" she offered.
"I don't know, what?" I replied.
"I don't know; I was too busy masturbating."
Wow! I hear these types of jokes from Brandon all the time, but I didn't recall this particular one. I tried to call him immediately, to no avail.
Going out for a beer with your roomate can be quite rewarding some nights.
|Wednesday, August 20th, 2008|
|Tales of a not-so-drunken singer ...
My god ... how long has it been since my last post?? Blogging is just a strange and unusual world to begin with; especially for newbies. It was easy to wake up from a drunken night of singing and amidst my down-time just go on about what songs I sang, and even why I sang them. But what happens to this blog if there is no singing or any drunkenness?? Is it doomed to come to a screeching hault? Nah, I'll still be the Drunken Singer that everyone has come to love, and sometimes even hate. The best parts of this blog are about the actual complexities of being a karaoke "regular". Don't know what I mean? Allow me to break this down into a few archetypes for you:The Regular
: These are the folks who show up around the same time and the same day each week to just hop onto a microphone and sing whatever it is they like. I feel safe in saying that 80-90% of these singers keep showing up because it's cheaper and better than any psychotherapy they will likely encounter. Some are great singers, some just have a good time, and some just need the stable recurrence in their lives. I myself feel that I can easily place a part of me in each of those categories. Being on stage for your 3-5 minutes gives you a certain control. Whether or not anyone actually pays attention is inconsequential, but the true regular brings his/her legions so that they know someone is listening. The praise is why they show up from week to week; they just want someone to tell them that they've done a good job at something. The reality of these folks is that they most likely abhor their life outside of a karaoke bar and just need a couple of nights a week to change the pace a bit, and feel special. The personality of these people is of a generally good disposition. They feel like celebrity and they'll act as such. Glad-handing and offering thanks for the praise comes hand in hand. There are a few who can just be pricks.The Frat Boys
: This doesn't have to be a literal interpretation. Several GI's come out and pull the same shit. These guys have no idea how to really
use a microphone and it shows. They'll cup the mic, keep it too far away from their mouths, keep it in the same spot the whole time (decreasing the opportunity for dynamic volume control), or just yell into it like an idiot; the best part is when they complain about feedback from the monitors and look at the KJ as if they
were the ones who were fucked up. These idiots cater to everyone's "favorite" song choices. This is how they survive and it's also how they've become the bane of my existence on my regular nights. You'll hear the shittiest versions of "Sweet Caroline", "Don't Stop Believin'", "Friends in Low Places", and a bevy of other songs that they suck at. The crowd will sing along, that's all that keeps them afloat. Usually just out for a night of partying, they don't have ANY karaoke etiquette; they do however afford me the opportunity for a cigarette.The Sad-Sacks
: This can usually be found in females. They're not really good singers, nor are they horrible singers. They just take up some stage time while they grieve over the worst parts of their lives. And, yes, the crowd does
pick up on that. They'll sing a sappy ballad that nobody wanted to hear, but in the spirit of karaoke I want them to have the right to sing these songs. They're coolers. Someone can get up there and rock a great song and the momentum of a fun night at karaoke is building up steam and then one of these fuckers comes along and knocks the wind out of the sails. I have been guilty of sad-sacking before, so I get their "pain". Proper karaoke etiquette is to just cheer them on and tell them they did a good job when they're done. I usually don't try and perpetuate bad singers, so I save these praises for sad-sacks who did their best. Otherwise I'd be fueling the next 5 seasons of American Idol
giving these people the false indication that they are actually good singers ...Groups
: Not only the bane of my existence, but the worst thing for a KJ is having to deal with a big group of friends who all want to sing their own songs as well as a song with a few friends as well. It's not a duet, there's no harmony present, it's just terrible singing times (#). A proper KJ will not let them do their individual songs until a full rotation has passed, and the group members get pissed. They feel like they have this sense of entitlement that makes them come across as arrogant cunts. Nothing is worse than being a regular and feeling the burn of being "skipped". I make a point to know my KJ's. If a tip or a drink purchase was involved, I'm cool with it. If I just see some asshole popping on and off the stage like it's their fucking show, I have a problem. I'll rat a motherfucker out fast because, dammit, I need
my therapy ;) If you're going to sing as a group, do it once, and then wait your fucking turns to sing again. Also, if you try to do "Bohemian Rhapsody", I'll be outside having a smoke.The Tone Deaf
: These people likely fall into other categories as well. They just wanted to get up there, maybe as part of a dare. But the worst is when you have a regular who is also tone deaf. Christ, they'll sing 3 or 4 shitty songs in one night and likely keep any would be "audience" members from sticking around. I don't know about you, but if I walked into a bar with live music and the band sucks complete shit, I might not even order my drink, I'll find a place where I won't feel like stabbing myself in the ear with an ink pen. But, alas, these fuckers pop up all over the place. They sing softly at times, they sing out of pitch constantly, they somehow don't know the words even though they're right on the fucking screen, and they also have some rhythm issues. I can't hate these people ... it'd be like saying you hate the handicapped. I don't know what they get from butchering a song, but never ... FUCKING EVER ... tell one of these people that they did a good job. If you do, you're making my life a living hell as well as other folks like your pal the drunken singer.Metalheads
: There are some karaoke joints that these guys can fit into. The KJ's know how to handle the gruff vocals and can make these folks sound good. The problem is, most metal fucking sucks. The best parts of metal music is usually the intricate guitar riffs, not the grunting and screaming vocals. Save this shit for a place that's a bit more conducive to applause for the shenanigans being pulled on stage. If you don't bring a small animal to decapitate or piss on the crowd, you haven't gained my respect or attention; once again I'll be poisoning my lungs with a cigarette.
Well, I just wanted to get that out to you guys who don't "get-it". There is a world of karaoke out there. It's weird, it's wacky, and there are quasi-politics involved. All I can do is write about the craziness that transpires. I'm often a part of it. I have my way, but I've learned it's not the only way to enjoy a night of singing. Hell, I don't even get drunk anymore so the blog title seems foolish. Maybe once in a blue moon I'll get hammered and just have
to tell everyone about it. But for now, look for the more polished and semi-sober singer at your local karaoke night.
|Tuesday, March 18th, 2008|
|Just Catching Up: An Apology Inserted
Well, I know it’s been a long time since a good ol’ Drunken Singer blog, but I want to try and get back on it. It’s just been hard because I have to find a friend who has a computer for me to borrow. That, and the tales surrounding the drunken singer were starting to get pretty personal instead of fun-loving.
Team Rawsome is really starting to get it together and we’re gonna have our own t-shirts to sport while we’re out singing. We’re also taking a step back from the frequency of how much we go out. I hope to post more about the fun stuff we go out and do as a group of friends; friends with super powers of entertaining the gathered masses at karaoke nights.
So, here’s a quick follow-up on the “Turf War” that I have mentioned in the past. It started as a joke between me and the guys and I kept it going as if it were really an issue. We all got our laughs, but then I found out that Dean got a peek at the Drunken Singer blog and was kind of upset by it. Not pissed off, but curious as to what he had done to me. I think he has already talked to Kitty and Garett about it, but I’ll make sure to speak to him about it next time I see him. I got into my turf war character a little too heavily and said some mean shit, I don’t take any of it back and I probably will continue to make up more stories about whatever I like.
So, that’s about the biggest news I have. I’ve been lazy and should slap the piss out of myself for that. Interestingly enough, some of Team Rawsome is taking a vow against drinking for April and May … WTF?!? Right? So, stay tuned for that!
|Tuesday, February 12th, 2008|
|Jack Quinn's - Feb. 3rd
Now, it's time once again to delve into that little part of my life that involves relationships with others. Namely ... other women. So, this whole thing with Sara keeps moving right along. This evening she was to be my ride to Quinn's, which is great! We spent the ride over there listening to our iPod's trying to decide what our first songs would be. My song choice was one that was going to broadcast the message of "us" with clean-cut precision. I think the problem with karaoke sometimes is that nobody is ever really
paying attention to what you are singing. I know most times I pick songs with words I love to match an occasion, but seldom does anyone else know why I might be singing that. I guess if I'm not singing the Darkness or an 80's tune, nobody is giving much of a shit.
I chose "You Wanted More" by Tonic. It was a song I requested being taken off of the set list for Wrestle With Jimmy because I just didn't feel it. Well, I chose it this night because I wanted to sing that chorus loud and clear to Sara so she could know where I was coming from.
'Cause you wanted more
More than I could give
More than I could handle
In a life that I can't live
You wanted more
More than I could bear
More than I could offer
For a love that isn't there"
Some of the best and most appropriate words I've ever spoken came from the mind of another.
Next up I was going to sing a song that I knew my voice could handle. The only trouble was that I hadn't heard "Runaway Train" by Soul Asylum for quite some time. I still got through it and couldn't shake the feeling that Dean was watching my every move. He was quite subdued this evening. Brandon had mentioned his somber tone when he walked in. Dean wasn't himself, he seemed watchful and ashamed. Had he found his way to the Tales of a Drunken Singer? Had he cybersurfed his way into the belly of the beast? This is one of my theories. For another strange reason, it seemed as though he timed it out to always be the singer just before me. Now Dean had really shoved the knife into my balloon and I just don't know how much longer I can take this madness!!!
Well, I had promised Sara that I would rock some Bowie for her so I did "Starman". I really like that song and singing it was fun too. There was actually a small table of dudes who knew the song pretty well and they were singing along. I felt like I served the song well and I had fun doing it. I don't think Sara liked it that much, but she expects more from me. May that
be a lesson to future drunken singers out there: always save your A-Material for when the time is right, otherwise you'll peak too soon in the relationship and she'll expect Billy Idol out of you every night of singing.
Now was time for a historic event in the Drunken Singer series. I was to retire my first song. Actually, I heard tell that I had retired the Darkness the last time I rocked it at Quinn's. It was at my zenith and I could never hope to outdo my own perfection. So, it seems that now Dean can have his fucking song and I feel the depravity heading his way knowing that he will never be able to top my best "I Believe In A Thing Called Love". May the rock gods bless his miserable soul. Now ... where was I? Yes yes, "Africa" by Toto. I did my final rendition and closed the book on that song. Now BK and Falette can rest easy at night knowing that there's nobody else out there who is rocking that song any better than me ;)
So Sara took me home and we called it a night. No Hank-luging to be done on this night. Just sleeping, and an early wake-up.
Stay tuned for the next installment, where Dean reveals himself as the true villain we've known him to be all along!!!
|Thunder & Buttons - Jan. 30th (Schwingers Birthday)
Oh yes!! Celebration in the air! The Schwinger was going to have her big day and we were all gonna chip in to make it happen. What do I remember about the early part of this night? Well, I met with the philosophy club and we had some fun upstairs at Phantom Canyon. Then it was off to buy a cake for Schwinger. We decided on buying some cupcakes and putting winky-frowns ;-( on all of them. After all, the winky frown is a Team Rawsome staple. Keep in mind we're still in the midst of a turf war ... but I wouldn't let it stop me ...
When we got back to my house we watched the top 20 of the VH1 Top 100 Songs of the 90's and I made it a point to enter them all into my phone so that I would have a goal to sing all of them. Well, easier said than done once I saw the songs I would have to try! But a drunken singer is only as good as the idiotic challenges he sets before himself ...
So, with most of Team Rawsome setting forth on this blustery and snowy night, I made my way to T&B's. We walk in through the doors and meet our usual smiley-faced door man. After so little time he already feels like family to me, and none of us know his name. That's a shameful admission, but I hope to learn it soon.
My first song was straight off of the VH1 list, "Losing My Religion" by REM. Not much I remember about that one other than it was a nice little warm-up for me. So I signed up for another VH1 hit, "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam. Mark Wilkerson was in the house and he's a big Pearl Jam fan, so I wanted to make sure he approved. After singing it, I went into the back room with Brandon and asked him what he thought. He thought I did a good job. I remember that the crowd was very slim that night and I blamed it on the inclement weather. Stepping outside for a smoke, I realized how frosty the breeze actually was. I saw Mark out there and asked him how he liked "Jeremy" and he gave me the ol' thumbs up. That'll do. But what I really want to know now is why I seek this sort of validation from everyone. Can't we all just come out to sing and have a fun time? Don't I know if I've done a song well without having anyone tell me? Isn't it just as well if I'm having fun? Well, the sad part is that for me to have fun I have to receive the desired result from the crowd. Bummer, right?
So, my next selection would prove to be a bit more challenging. It was "Hit Me Baby One More Time" by Britney Spears. I know I've heard a male vocals version of it before, but this was the version meant for that nice high female voice. I braved the elements and walked away from the experience feeling like I did just about all I could do with what was handed to me. Remember, VH1 picked those songs ... not me.
But now I was getting a bit tired of sounding foolish on stage (hold the laughter ...) I wanted to sing a song I knew well so I could save a little face. Plus I was getting hammered and singing songs you like when drunk is a karaoke standard. So I went with some "New Shoes" by Paolo Nutini so I could cut loose with my juice! I rocked it and felt good. Good enough to take a random challenge from the Team. At 10:07 the bar was still pretty empty. I sang my song to a practically empty Team Rawsome table. Brandon made his admission that "Hank owns this bar" and I felt it was a factual statement. With such a small crowd, I told him I'd take his request and then hop back on the VH1 express.
Brandon knew I wasn't going to sing "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey so he told me to do "any song that fits your taste, or talent, as long as it's Foreigner." So I made my way up to Kitty on stage and asked her to show me the list of Foreigner songs. There were quite a lot of song names I knew, but was unsure as to how well I could sing any of them. Then I saw the Belle of the Ball: "Jukebox Hero" and put in to sing it immediately. I rocked it out with all of my drunken might and walked away feeling damn good. I had fun and everyone enjoyed rocking along to it. Now, at this point in the night, Schwinger was on her way!!
It's now around 11:07 and we gave Schwinger her gifts. We all taped quarters to napkins that we had written special birthday sentiments on. She really loved the thought put into it and we were only moments away from what would turn into utter insanity before night's end. Before we get to that, I should add that it was now time for me to make the fool of myself again with another VH1 top pick, "Sabotage" by the Beastie Boys. Now, I believe this song is also on the video game Rock Band so I thought it wouldn't be too hard for me since I had the singing part on there before. Well, as usual, my inebriated mind was incorrect in its assumptions. I got through most of the words with no qualms, but it certainly wasn't done to perfection. Once again, I had some fun with it, and that was all that mattered. But then, a nice surprise was coming for the IVAW crew who were in attendance.
A guy who we had seen for most of the night got up to do a song. I can't remember his exact words, but I knew that they weren't on the screen. He was up there preaching against Bush and the way the government is being ran by cowards and idiots and then the chorus broke out for a very familiar song, "Liar" by Danzig. Now we all rallied behind this guy with cheers and hooplahs!! He was spreading the message that we all believe in. He put emotion and balls into his performance. He worked that stage and microphone like a man with a mission! For this we awarded him honorary Team Rawsome status. He was a maniac, and I like maniacs. After his song we met him out in the smoking area and he began to spill out some more of his frustration about the modern American way of life. That we were all sheep and followers and nobody has the balls to stand up for their beliefs anymore. He spoke of young kids touting their Bob Marley shirts but the same kids couldn't even tell you who Marley was or what he believed! They just think the image of a man with dreads is fashionable. He was certainly of like mind with us; he spoke the truths we try to tell every day. So, thank you mystery singer and I hope we meet again!
The night was calming down, and the clock was ticking away our last minutes of a super-fun Wednesday night. I decided to knock an easy one off the list and do "Under the Bridge" by Red Hot Chili Peppers. There were guys at the stage singing along and the Team Rawsome group was adding to the song from our rockin' table. Not much that I can say about this because I was tossed about by the demon known as Drunkity Jones. It's a common song heard all the time and my version was no better or worse than anything anyone else has ever heard. It was my final song of the night before the collaborative Team Rawsome song.
Now, it was nice to be there for Katie's birthday. Why? Well, of course because of the swell times enjoyed by all, but also because of the fact that Kim showed up. You'd have to dig through my early blogs to really understand my fascination with Kim. When she arrived I was reduced to a young boy; shy and modest. When I want someone to like me I resort to the most idiotic of tactics. I guess I felt that being myself hadn't worked so I would just curl up into a protective ball and hope for the best. Well, what better way to showcase my maturity than getting into a cupcake icing fight? I know! There isn't a better way! So I got iced up by Schwinger and just cut loose the rest of the night without worrying what Kim may have thought. But then the guys sitting at the table with Kim and Andy began to mock me about my badass Kennedy Space Center shirt. They goofed that it was too small on me and that I should let my little brother have his shirt back. Well, I like tight shirts because they feel like a gentle hug all night. But I became very self-conscious in my drunken state and started to wish I hadn't chosen that kick-ass shirt. But fuck them because they're not Team Rawsome and they just can't understand things that are beyond their level of awesomeness, i.e. ... me!
So like clockwork, Team Rawsome got up for their last song of the night, where we rocked "You Give Love A Bad Name" by Bon Jovi. I handled most of the verse, but Andy had to come in with the higher end chorus for me because I had already strained the shit out of my voice for most of the night. We all had a blast and it was soon time for pie.
We made our run to Pie and had a quick bite to eat. There were no full pie's available so we ordered what was left of both the Coconut Cream and the French Silk. This night would be the night that set forth the standard of phoning in our pie from now on. Another phenomena happened at Pie this night. It's not the first time either and I'd need a shrink to tell me why I am doing these things, but I have this retarded habit of making Asian jokes around Kim. Why the fuck would I do that? It's not like I make a point to remind my other friends of their ethnicity (well, except for Frenchy ...) Usually I kick myself in the ass for letting the jokes slip on out of my idiotic drunken mouth and Kim assures me that I hadn't offended her. But this time, I made a remark only after she had left. For this there is no excuse and I deserve to be punished to the fullest extent. I am stating for the record now that I will no longer make any comments dealing with Asia or its people when hanging out drunk at karaoke. Now, I know that some jokes are ok and some are beyond reproach, but I just want to make a rule so that I don't offend anyone in the future. Now, I've been known as an equal-opportunity-asshole because my rants and remarks are offered to anyone around me without prejudice. I don't necessarily like being called an asshole, but I'll take that tailored version anytime. I'm just a jerk to everyone ... friend or foe, and people can get behind that.
So Team Rawsome dispersed and Garett dropped me off at the front door. No after party. No Guitar Hero. Just my TV and me falling asleep together after a long night at the office.
|Wednesday, January 30th, 2008|
|Jack Quinn's - Jan. 27th
Every now and again I go into a slump. I’ll have “an off night” or something. This is the tale of what happens to me when I’m having an “off night”.
I had to do a dinner show just before heading out. I got home at just after nine and wanted to head downtown as soon as possible. Everyone was texting me wondering where I was, so I felt rushed. Mikey and I headed down there and it was near 10 pm when we arrived. To top it off, Kitty wasn’t working because she was sick. The guy subbing in for her was very lame and it seemed like it took forever just to sing my first song. It was damn near 11 before I got up to try out “Land of Confusion” by Genesis. This song set me off on the wrong foot all night, and when it rains it definitely pours …
After my lackluster performance, Mikey and I went outside for a snagglerat and discussed what went wrong. He assured me that I could most likely sing it on a good night, but I really shouldn’t start off with “screamers” like that. To add to my misery, it seemed like every other singer was having really great performances! It helps the environment when it’s like that, but I’ve gotten used to being the center of attention there. Now my mental state is deteriorating depending on whether or not it’s “MY HOUSE” or not. It was definitely not my house this evening. That Dean guy was there and he was inching in on my territory even more! He was buying shots for Schwinger and Summer! It was injustice!! What nerve to come and try to demolish the walls I’ve worked so hard to build for the last several months!?! I didn’t let it agitate me to badly, as I still know in my heart of hearts that I’m better than he is.
I also came to an admission when talking to Mike outside. I told him that if any readers of this came out just to see me do my thing, they would have been terribly disappointed at what they saw and could totally debunk any blog I’ve ever written talking about how good I am. Well, here I am admitting to the fact that I’m not 100% all of the time. If things are going well in my life, I usually have a great night out. If I’m having a shitty run as of late, then my performances suffer. When I choose songs I’ve never sang before, I sacrifice my showmanship and quality. All those guys who used to admire and cower before the trembling power of my stage presence can now safely call me a bitch and feel triumph over me. Well, those days are NOT going to begin! I am going to start bringing my A-Game and if some bald-ass punk wants to try to run game in my hood I’m gonna challenge him to a sing-off and I – WILL – WIN !! I believe fully in myself that with songs that I know like the back of my hand I can rock the fuck out of them! Maybe if this half-assed pussy tried out some new material he’d see how hard it is to stay at the top of the heap. You know why I don’t sing The Darkness all the time? Because it’s FUCKING EASY! Why do you think I can run all over the stage and shit when rocking that one? Because it’s a cake fucking song that everyone likes. So, DEEEEEEEEN, why don’t you grab your sack and try some songs that are a little more e-s-o-t-e-r-i-c … go google it you fuck. Moving on …
I was bumming about having done a shitty version of the Phil Collins tune. Mike gave me a 5/10 … which was kind, at best. BK had been wanting me to try “Going To California” by Led Zeppelin, so I obliged. You see, a truly talented singer will not back down from a request no matter how goofy it may be. Just wanted to reiterate that point. So, I came to find out that the karaoke version of that song kinda sucks, but I had fun singing it. I was a bit loaded, so I was having fun. But the proverbial bomb was about to be dropped on me and it was going to come as a cushioned blow.
Dean’s friend is this dude who works at Tony’s. He’s not a bad crooner, he has his style. Out of a clear blue sky he comes over and says, “Hey Hank, can you come outside with me for a minute?” Holy shit … what had I said or done? Had a wronged a lady in some way? Did he know about the turf war? Did he want to beat me up? I was a little concerned, but with a smile and a dash of confidence I said, “Sure man, I’m right behind ya.” When we got outside he didn’t look pissed. Not even angry at all. He looked … remorseful? Now I was certainly curious. “What’s up man?” I asked him. “Dude, I’ve been wanting to get this off my chest for a long time but never had the opportunity. I just wanted to let you know that when I took Rachel home that night from Tony’s I didn’t know that you guys were together.” What – the – fuck. I was surprised at this, but not surprised at all. Allow me to explain. This guy was basically apologizing for fucking my ex even though I had no clue that it had happened. I wasn’t surprised because my ex is a crazy whore. Literally, crazy. So I offered him some comfort, “Hey man, don’t worry about it. I’m over her dude. She was crazy, I loved the hell out of her but she’s legitimately crazy.” He felt relieved when he said, “I know man. I mean, I didn’t know how bad she was back then, but now I know how crazy she is.” I assured him I wasn’t pissed a bit more and then we went back inside. So, having said that, I’ll also say that when I go out drinking I try not to make it a habit of dealing with emotional issues. I really am “over” Rachel. I used to be much, much worse when it came to that subject and I’m glad I finally got strong enough to get myself out of it all. I guess what kept settling in my mind was, “Well, there’s one I didn’t know about … I wonder how many others there are …” Statistically speaking, she’s probably slept with 1-in-8 people I see around downtown. So, chances are that when I walk into a bar anywhere downtown, that there are probably at least two dudes that have had sex with Rachel. Now, certain days of the week either increase or decrease that ratio, but the median is most likely 1-in-8 (I don’t have the stats to back it up, I’m just saying …) So that kind of sat in the back of my head and presented itself more in the morning. Rest easy, I’m over it again ;)
So now all that was left of the night was for me to retire “Africa”. The CSPD guys came out in a big show of force and were demanding my vocal styling’s of Toto’s greatest hit. To make an otherwise long story short, the fuck-head KJ didn’t take tips or drinks in exchange for my doing the song. He wanted to shut it all down promptly at 1 am. Kitty has been known to keep us rolling until 1:30 if she gets a shot of Jameson. So, now I’m drunk and kinda pissed off, I go outside to smoke. While I’m out there talking, I hear, you guessed it, “Africa” playing. I just shrugged and let it be. I came back in to face my peers and their disdain only to discover that they had merely played the mp3 and not the karaoke song. So my pals are holding me to a song retirement the Sunday of the Super Bowl.
So that was my Sunday. I hope you all enjoyed peering into my head for a bit. I plan to delve more into my psyche as me move along through these nights of drunken crooning. So, until our next adventure …
|Thunder & Buttons - Jan. 23rd
Hey there everyone! I just wanted to make a quick apology for the time delay on my blogs, I hope to fix that very soon and get your favorite blog up as soon after the events as possible. I also want you to know I have a couple of side projects (in writing) that I am going to be working on as well as this. So, that being said, here’s some week-old info!
Wednesday night always seems to be a fun night for folks on a budget. My car had no gas, I had no cash, and it was going to be up to my friends to carry me through another fun night. Well this was surely a night of fun, but it was also fraught with frustration! Guess what ladies and gents, this was the night I found out that I have a leech in my midst! Yup, there’s a guy out there trying to inch his way into my fun times! Don’t get me wrong, he’s a good singer, but there’s only room for a couple of great ones and that happens to be my crew and myself! Nobody entertains better than we do, and I aim to keep it that way. So keep reading for the continuing tales of this karaoke turf war!
Summer picked me up and my pals paid my cover so that we could start drinking our 25 cent pitchers of PBR! When we first get there the crowd is minimal so I take advantage by singing some of my off-kilter tunes. I started with “Life On Mars” by David Bowie. I had fun with it and think I did a good job of it; it’s just not your typical crowd pleaser.
Then it was time to debut a tune I’ve been working up in my spare time. “The Bucket” by Kings of Leon was a song I heard a month or so ago at Meadow Muffins. There was a girl who sang it and I thought I could sell it much better. I donned some aviators and got up on stage to croon away at this Southern Rock B-side. I felt I really sold it and put some Hankness into it. Song: Accomplished.
Now the crowd had grown a bit and it was time to gear my selections toward them. “Paint It Black” by The Rolling Stones was something I knew they could connect with. I did well but there are some points in the outro that I want to clean up so that next time I break it out I can sell it completely and get a bitchin reaction.
Outside of songs, more interesting events were transpiring. Remember Phoebe, the gal I met randomly through the cell phone in the street? Well, she showed up to hang out with the crew! She even brought a friend along with her. I think her pal was sweet on me, but I wasn’t really attracted to her; but I’ll flirt any time the opportunity presents itself … it keeps the mind fresh.
So, as most of you know I’ve been known to sing an absentee request. I texted my “eye on the prize”, Lauren, and asked her to come out. She had to work early so she declined. I assured her that I would sing a nice song for her even though she wasn’t there. Now was my opportunity to put some emotion into a song that I sometimes sing a little flat (not pitch-wise). I wanted to do “Last Request” by Paolo Nutini. When the song started up, I saw Phoebe’s friend light up and say, “I love this song!” Now I was ready to rock it with even more confidence than before. My motivation shifted to proving myself! Then by second verse I had to remember why I chose the song in the first place and mentally put Lauren in the audience. I did a really solid performance and was able to walk away very happy about it. I almost have that song nailed down to perfection, and it’s been a long time coming.
Tears For Fears has a song that I like to break out from time to time and it’s called “Head Over Heels”. Garett joined me on stage to rock air keyboards for me. It calls for some falsetto but my transfer from falsetto to my normal voice was smoooooooth. That’s why I like to do that song, because it shows that skill that I possess that, realistically, not many guys do. So, enough bragging, Schwinger and Rohrback were en route!!
So, let’s discuss this turf war a bit more. BK has long been a fan of my rendition of “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” by The Darkness. The night I first met the Schwinger was one of the nights that I seriously CRUSHED that song. I’m all over the stage, I’m on top of my air guitar, and my falsetto is dead-on! So, why is this dude Dean coming into my hood and claiming one of my staples? Karaoke turf wars are not for everyone to understand. If you’re scoffing at this, then find another blog to read because this shit is about to get real! I’m planning on how I’m going to approach this guy about it. There’s no denying that he can sing his way through it without earning a “boo” from the crowd, but that doesn’t give someone ownership of the jam! He claims to be a bassist in a cover band here in town and that happens to be one of their songs. Well, I’m gonna call dibs on that shit because it’s a BK fave and I look out for my friends! So, listen up Dean: If you plan on doing this song, you should be kind enough to ask my express permission. I would like to propose a sing-off for ownership rights. Audience reaction will rate it and we’ll see who deserves that song on their repertoire! You can outsing me on many songs so step off of my shit before this gets messy!!
Well, it was time for me to do one more and what better song to sing in a drunken state than “Undone (The Sweater Song) by weezer? I’ll tell ya … there are none! So, I got up and rocked the weez and felt good about my night of singing. The only thing to do now was ensure that Team Rawsome was going to be able to get up for our final song. I feel that my karaoke crew, now known as Team Rawsome, deserves to do a final group song when we go out. We dump plenty of money into our favorite bars and we take good care of the staff as well. Not to mention, we help provide the place with a fun environment. The karaoke host gets paid if we’re there or not, but I’ll guarantee they have more fun when TR is in the house!! So, TR bought our host a shot and she let us come up to rock some “You Give Love A Bad Name” by Bon Jovi. It was fun and Andy definitely carried the chorus for me.
Well, that’s a wrap for this edition of Drunken Singer. I sure hope you all had fun reading of these strange and sometimes awkward tales. Just come up to me any time and let me know you’ve been reading and I’ll do my best to buy you a drink ;)
|Friday, January 25th, 2008|
|Jack Quinn's - Jan. 20th
Another night of singing, but a night that was pleasantly filled with mild … what do the kids call it these days … drama? Yeah, there was a bit of drama, but nothing that this weathered alcohol consumer couldn’t handle. This is a bit of a continuation of last Sunday’s events.
Jack Quinn’s has been the home of the Drunken Singer for many a Sunday night. When you go meddling and introducing your special lady friends to it, it’s no wonder that they might want to continue going there once the sparkle has dissolved. Well, I don’t want to say the relationship between Sara and I has gone entirely kaput, but let’s just say she was less than happy about my last entry; as well she should be.
I showed up to Quinn’s sober for a change. Mike came along with me and we were going to have some fun with some Happy Hour! When I arrived, Andy and Angie were already at a table and Summer was surely en route. I was “cold” so I needed a warm up. I saw that Sara and her friends were there (accompanied with stink-eyes for yours truly) and I went over to say hello. Sara was less than welcoming toward me, but it wasn’t gonna thwart me for long. I signed up for some “At The Stars” by Better Than Ezra. It’s a sweet song, but it’s not one of my showstoppers by any means. I thought Sara might like a nice ballad, so I went ahead with it.
Andy had agreed with me that my next song, “Moondance” by Van Morrison, would be good for my vocal range. I agreed and signed it up. During my waiting period, Sara sang a lovely number and I applauded accordingly. I was going to be polite to her no matter how nasty or insidious she was going to be to me. I’ll always march on with my dignity mostly intact. Mike noticed that I may have been a bit flustered by everything, but it was still no matter to me. It may have affected my song, but I like to think it was my lack of preparation for a song that I know I usually have to practice a bit before trying to nail it down. I lacked heart during my performance and that shook me a bit. It wasn’t my house that night, as there were plenty of great singers in the room that night.
I was waiting for my CSPD crew to arrive so that I could rock a good one. What better than a little “Ballroom Blitz” by Sweet? This is one of those songs where it helps to be slightly maniacal when wielding a microphone. I am a bit touched in the head as it is, so it was not a huge character change for me to really get the song out. Mike’s comment was that he could tell I was a bit strained on some of the high notes, but the stage show was totally awesome. I like that review. I do those types of songs for my CSPD gang because they eat that shit up.
Now as you have read before, Sara and I usually sing “Under Pressure” together. Well, she signed it up for herself and her friend Sarah. That’s no biggie, she didn’t wanna sing it with me, so I’m not upset. But then, out of the corner of my eye, I saw that she sent a raspberry my way with eyes closed!! WOW! That’s kinda rough … and childish, I thought to myself.
*** Correction 1-31-08 *** Sara was in fact posing for a picture when she stuck her tongue out. I saw the pic on her facebook page and decided to publish this correction immediately. So, for the record I no longer feel that she was immature or childish about singing "Under Pressure", and she most likely missed singing it with me ;p
*** *** *** ***
There was also the mystery of who bought me a drink … yeah, Renee came over with a drink that looked and smelled like a Shirley Temple and said she couldn’t say who it was from. Well, it was a cranberry vodka and soda. I chugged it down and went about my business, but couldn’t help but be curious as to who bought me a drink. I scanned the bar over and investigated my friends. Nobody knew who it was from. Now, had it been a blueberry vodka and soda (my favorite mixed drink) then I would have fingered Sara as the culprit. She’s messed that order up before, and I can’t believe I hadn’t figured her out yet!! Yes, she was indeed the perpetrator of this enigmatic free beverage. I found this out just before she was leaving. She approached me with malicious intent and I went in to say hello and put a hand on her shoulder that was batted away like a Babe Ruth homer. Ok, I’m curious once again. She was attempting to hand me a coaster with some writing on it. She then told me, “Oh, I read your blog. You know that curly-haired, blue-eyed girl that you wanted to have sex with? Well, here’s her number since I know you threw it out.” I had to laugh a bit us I flipped the coaster into the air asking her, “What am I gonna do with this?” Then she stormed out. What a mess!! I guess I should have had some remorse, but Sunday is my night and I wasn’t going to let that incident stifle my mood.
Time for a duet with Andy! This time we were going to do “(I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life” from Dirty Dancing. Even though the CSPD guys were hoping for my final rendition of Toto’s “Africa” before I retired the song. The duet was good but not great, and certainly priceless. I think there’s some video of it out there that might find its way to YouTube before too long …
I had a chat with Sara about things and we decided that she and I needed to have a chat about what had happened so that we can hang out without these silly issues occurring again. She agreed.
So that’s it everyone. I’ll be double posting tonight since I went to T&B’s on Wednesday and had a grand old time with the Philosophy Club crew.
|Thursday, January 17th, 2008|
|Jack Quinn's - Jan. 13th
I was prompted just minutes ago that I’ve been “dropping the ball” on my blogging and I couldn’t agree more. Wags won’t let me slip … not when the happiness of literally tens of people is on the line!! Not much has been going on in the singing portion of my life, but last Sunday night was a pretty damn good time. This blog is not for the faint of heart or those who are overly sensitive to my actions. It will, however, hold the truth … and that is very important to me.
Where should I begin? I think I’ll start with the part of the day I call the “warm-up”. I had purchased a 12 pack of High Life the night before so that I would have beers to drink while I watched the playoff game at my house. The Colts were to face the Chargers and I was going to make sure I had the booze to do it. Well, as it turned out I was going to need a lot more booze and Wags was going to help me get it. A quick trip to Ft. Carson and we were able to procure a 30 pack of PBR and a 750 ml of Jagermeister. Now that’s how I like to watch football! How was I gonna do a shot for each touchdown when I didn’t have the proper booze to line the inside of my Colts shot glasses?
Wags and I shoved a quick two beers into our guts as soon as we got home. Then we played a waiting game for guests. Wik arrived and not soon after that Brandon bounced onto the scene! It was shaping up to be a lovely early afternoon of drinking! Ty and Mark showed up not long after Emily had arrived. That’s about it for the guests that day.
Well, the Colts gave the game to the Chargers and I was glad that I had protected myself from emotion by consuming so much delicious alcohol. I decided to rock some Guitar Hero for a bit. That lasted for a short time and the guys wanted to watch the Dallas and NYG game. I was too drunk to care so I entertained myself with pissing off of the balcony instead; among other silly things. I had to be at Quinn’s by 9 and there wasn’t too much time to waste! I think that all I ate was the Dorito’s and Tostito’s that Wik and Wags brought home. I was drinking hot tea and playing GH3 until it was time to bounce!
I arrived at Quinn’s as drunk as any skunk I had ever met. I went to sign up for my first song and wanted to go with “At This Moment” by Billy Vera. Sara was there already and so was Mark. To add to things I had found some random cell phone on the ground outside of the Thirsty Parrot. I perused the text messages to find a clue about this person’s whereabouts. I looked at the call log and called a person named Phoebe. I told her how I found the phone on the ground and all of that nonsense. She was headed to the Ritz anyway so she said she’d link up with me at Quinn’s before heading there.
I got up to sing my song and was pretty damned drunk still. It was another one of those inexplicably magical moments where I start singing and I’m just – fucking – on! After the first verse I let out a chuckle to the crowd and just said, “I’m wasted!” and the crowd just went apeshit! Then the words on the screen came up saying “I’ll get down on my knees/kiss the ground that you walk on” and I took the cue to drop to my knees. Now I’m trying to pull that mic out of the stand but I was lower than it and it was kind of stuck. I kept singing while I tried to pull the mic loose and suddenly the damn thing launched at my mouth like a fucking rock from a slingshot! I immediately tasted blood and asked Kitty if you could tell it was bleeding, she assured me I was fine. Well, the show must go on, so I continued to rock the hell out of that room! It was a great feeling to get that reaction and I had to look over to Sara for some kind of approval from her as well. She seemed like she liked it, despite my antics. I walked away from that stage feeling like I just spanked the shit out of that song. My mood was quickly accelerating and the night was still young!
For my next trip on stage, Wik wanted me to sing “Plush” by Stone Temple Pilots. We both felt pretty certain that we rocked that tune too. I’m sure I had already had a couple of beers and at least a shot in this whole time. But it was time for another solo song for me, so I went with “Sad Songs” by Sir Elton John. Someone earlier had sang an Elton song and my drunken brain told me “Hey, I know and Elton song I could sing …” The brain of a drunk can sometimes be baffling yet surprisingly simplistic.
The whole group of us were having a really great time. I was getting drunker by the second and there seemed to be no end to it in sight! Surely my judgment was not what it should have been. I was being overly flirtatious with several gals that night, and least of all Sara. Don’t ask me why, because I really don’t know. I thought some other girl was cute, what with her curly hair and blue eyes, so I asked for her phone number. Then I found out she had kind of an annoying laugh; but I entertained the thought that sex with her would be fun … Then she slipped me her phone number on a napkin right in front of Sara while we were talking. I never felt like more of a subversive dirtbag, but (here comes an overused line) I was drunk. I got rid of the number anyway … I’m too damn hilarious to have an annoying laugher around me.
Sara and I got up to rock some “Under Pressure” but my heart was ready for rocking “Endless Love” with Andy. A quick word about our newest karaoke brother, Andy: He has a way of always picking the best damn songs of the night! When I was gone on vacation my friends told me that he was my replacement for them. I view him as an equal if not a more entertaining singer due to the fact that I sometimes take my singing a bit too seriously. Well, he and I did the final song after the place was basically cleared out already. It was time to get home, and Sara was my ride.
We got to the house; Sara, Wags,and myself and the drunken shenanigans were going to continue. Wags fell down in the kitchen and I joined him to cuddle by the oven. From there, I felt unable to stand any longer. Sara had to coax me to go downstairs and brush my teeth before bed. But how was I gonna get down there when my legs were inoperable? I low-crawled to the top edge of the steps and told Wags, “Don’t worry man, I used to do this all the time as a kid” and winked at him. He started an uncontrollable laughter that continued on as I began to slide head-first down the stairs in an action that Wags dubbed “Hank-Lugeing”. He then tried it out himself going backwards; then again headfirst. I was laughing my ass off until I was grabbed up by the nape of my neck and commanded into the bathroom. I got up on my knees and began to brush them “teefs” of mine.
Well, I was then off to bed and a new week was dawning ever so quickly. God bless Mike Wagner for being there to encourage my hijinks …