Sunday, December 07, 2008



If you go to Southeast Asia, you might want to consider avoiding karaoke bars:

A 23-year-old Malaysian man was killed on Thursday night after reportedly enraging other customers who felt that he “hogged the microphone” at what Malaysia’s Star Online described as “a coffeeshop-cum-karaoke outlet” in the town of Sandakan, on the island of Borneo.

The Guardian’s Ian MacKinnon adds some regional context:

Karaoke rage is not unheard of in Asia. There have been several reported cases of singers being assaulted, shot or stabbed mid-performance, usually over how songs are sung.

Frank Sinatra’s “My Way” has reportedly generated so many outbursts of hostility that some bars in the Philippines now do not offer it on the karaoke menu anymore. In Thailand this year, a gunman shot eight people dead after tiring of their endless renditions of a John Denver tune.

Or at least leave “Country Roads” out of your repertoire. One wonders how they feel about Barry Manilow.

Pointers to this fortnight’s blog carnivals:

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