Should The KJ Sing At Their Own Karaoke Show?

Should The KJ Sing At Their Own Karaoke Show?

Published On: 10-31-2013 02:56am

Comments: 5 - Hits: 0

I'm not a KJ (karaoke jockey), but I am a karaoke enthusiast who has been singing for about 17 years. Along with singing at karaoke shows over the years, I also enjoy reading online karaoke discussion forums. 

Karaoke discussion forums include a variety of topics, for example, running a fair rotation, dance music played between singers, or what the most popular songs heard at their karaoke shows. Recently, I was reading opinions from both KJ hosts and singers on how they feel about the KJ singing at their own show.

The discussion included how often they should sing, or if they should sing in every rotation.

Some KJs feel that they're entitled to sing at their own shows though many don't approve of KJs taking more turns at singing than their singers. They think it's unprofessional for the KJ to hog the mic. Other KJs stated that they'd rather let their singers do the entertaining and prefer to sing on their night off from hosting. Then there are some KJs who won't sing at all at their own shows because the rotation is too long, or they drop out of rotation after a certain amount of singers are signed up. On a slow night, some KJs are instructed by the bar owner or employer to keep singing, thereby, entertaining patrons in the bar or venue. However, most choose to play "filler" music. Filler music or dance music is music from original recording artists played between singers.

Karaoke singers feel that it is okay for the KJ to sing in the rotation in turn with the other singers, as long as the KJ doesn't sing more than once in rotation. Other singers feel that once the rotation has a certain amount of singers signed up, or the rotation is too long, the KJ should drop out. Most agreed that waiting to sing for over an hour is considered a long rotation. Some singers feel that waiting 30 minutes is too long. Of course, there are a few singers that feel that KJs should not sing at all at their own shows because singers want to sing as much as possible. Some also feel that if the KJ is an exceptional singer, it may discourage the mediocre singer to try karaoke, perhaps for their very first time.

It's not unusual for opinions on karaoke to differ, however, this particular topic met without much debate or arguing. Fair rotation and dance music between singers are much more controversial subjects. I may write about them later.


Besides singing karaoke, I also make handmade jewelry. My specialty is music themed jewelry including microphone charm jewelry. I sell microphone earrings, necklaces, brooches and clip-on zipper pulls. My microphone jewelry is perfect for the karaoke enthusiast! See section, "Musical Instruments, etc." at

Reader's Comments

By Guest on 11/22/2013 @ 03:19pm

As a karaoke host for almost 20 years, I usually will sing the very first song of the evening - not because I want to sing a song - but primarily as a "sound check" to get all of the levels correct, and make sure that the equipment is functioning properly. The trick is, of course, to make it look like you're doing nothing more than singing a song. Karaoke enthusiasts such as yourself, don't leave the house to meet at an establishment just to hear the karaoke host singing. You go there to sing yourself. Granted, it's always a treat when you're at an establishment and you hear another singer that has a truly excellent voice, is doing a really good job on a song, and the atmosphere is fun. I understand that you're there to sing. And while there are others that frequent karaoke establishments without singing (these are what we call "the listeners"). The object of the exercise is for the singers to share this tiny slice of the limelight. Usually, if there are at least four singers then I would drop out of a regular rotation. The only time that I would actually ever insert myself into a rotation during the evening is to simply break up the pace. There are those evenings when you find yourself stuck in "ballad hell" where there seems to be nothing more than one slow, depressing, somebody died, my love left me, I'm so Lonesome, somebody please love me song. While there's nothing inherently wrong with these types of songs - some of them are actually quite beautiful - one after another is like tying an ever growing anchor around your ankles. It will eventually bring this karaoke show to a halt. So it is in these types of situations, where I may make small "adjustments" to the rotation in order to pick up the pace, or simply insert myself with a happy, fun song to brighten up the atmosphere. Other than that, the only time that you catch me singing is what I am requested by someone to saying a duet with them. Thankfully, most of the time I can find someone else to be the stand-in for the duet. The object of the exercise is simple: get as many people in the establishment to sing as often as you can during the evening and keep the atmosphere like a fun party. Spread that limelight as far and wide as you can.

By Guest on 11/16/2013 @ 02:29am

At my shows, I usually sing at the top of the rotation, to get a feel for sound levels. If it's a super busy night, I will only sing once at the beginning, and once around midnight. I always back people up if they ask me, and I never turn down a duet request, since that's the song that person wants to sing. I do this 4-5 times every week, I get to sing enough :)

By Guest on 11/04/2013 @ 04:55pm

As a KJ, I always sing the first song (unless a private event, then it is up to the client). I usually take myself out of the rotation once it hits 10 singers. Sometimes, I will go back into the rotation to lift the energy or calm it if needed. I also will perform requests if time allows. My take on it is this: Who exactly do you go to karaoke to listen to? The KJ is just another person in the list. The same rules should apply to the KJ as to anyone else who wishes to sing.

By craftsofthepast on 10/31/2013 @ 11:11pm

I wish I could help you. I don't karaoke, but then I don't do much of anything in the evening, except eat and rest ;) Interesting quandary you have posed here.

By Guest on 10/31/2013 @ 09:07pm

My attitude always was that it's not my show it's the singers show.... if it's a bit slow then I'll sing... I do sing the first song after that it's up to the singers....

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