History is made.
We have a milestone in “Up to Snuff” this week – the first unanimous vote since we started the column last season. I kind of figured Dororo would regain the top spot this week (it and Mob Psycho 100 have been trading it back and forth all season), but it really says something about how broad Dororo‘s appeal is that it could get this group of writers to agree on anything.
This week’s “Ask the Writers” question comes courtesy of Zaiden, and it certainly elicited some surprising and interesting responses. I snuck in the anisong part just to keep us on topic, and those were especially revealing I thought. One day perhaps we’ll all meet up in RL and hold each other to their word…
Here are this week’s results:
Weekly Staff Poll
Ask The Writers
The RandomC team are meeting up in real life for karaoke. What song(s) do you choose to sing so as not to embarrass yourself? Caveat: choose 1 muggle song and one anime song.
- Enzo: I think the key to Zaiden’s question is “so as not to embarrass yourself”. As the old saying goes, I couldn’t carry a tune if it had a handle, and vocally I have less range than pre-diet Kyle Schwarber in left field. But I learned early on when I moved to Japan (where one can’t avoid karaoke even if they want to) that Johnny Cash is in a register I can handle – so I’ll pick “Ring of Fire”. As for an ani-song, I was tempted to take “Koi no Hime Hime Pettanko” (Yowapeda) but that hardly meets the requirement so it stays in the shower for me. So I’ll go with Ally Kerr’s “Sore Feet Song”, the original Mushishi OP and still possibly my favorite anime opening song ever. However, it should be noted that I hold the view that embarrassing yourself is the whole point of karaoke, and the only mantra is “fake it till you make it” – hang on till everyone is drunk enough that you start to sound good.
- Choya: I love singing, but there are very few opportunities I have to take part in karaoke. From the times I’ve had the chance to do karaoke, I’m tempted to put down more amusing songs that are fun to do but aren’t exactly showcases of my voice. I would say “Let’s Dance” by David Bowie is a favorite of mine because of how fun it is to do a Bowie impersonation. For something safe though, I’d probably go with a boy band staple, Stevie Wonder, or Rod Stewart because I’m overly confident in my singing voice. Not sure which anime songs would show up in a karaoke machine, but it would be fun to go for an Asian Kung Fu Generation song. Particularly, “Haruka Kanata” from OG Naruto would be a great one. If I’m having several beers in the process, then “Hare Hare Yukai” will do.
- Zaiden: Actually, I’m pretty decent at karaoke, so impressing the other writers shouldn’t be an issue. I also have regular access to it too, with a relatively decent selection of anime songs. So I have a good idea of what I’d like to sing, and focus on having fun. For the anime side of things, I’d easily belt out one of ‘Butterfly’ from Digimon or ‘departure’ from Hunter x Hunter. Both are extremely energetic songs that comfortably fit in the male vocal range – a rarity for popular anime themes. Then let’s throw in ‘Nessun Dorma’ (Editor’s note: !!) by Puccini as my normie choice. I’m not very familiar with contemporary Western music, and a random bit of opera will be pretty funny.
- Stilts-nyan: Gods, I hate karaoke… Okay. If I had to do it—and, ideally, it was in a karaoke box situation, instead in the middle of a bar like it generally is here in the States, where my admittedly limited social anxiety flares up due to my general lack of interest in the musical realm—my non-anime song would be “I’ll Make A Man Out Of You” from Mulan. Is a Disney song cheating? I don’t care, because I’m singing ALL the parts. Though if it is, I’d go for Denis Leary’s “Asshole” or something from Taylor Swift, for the lulz. As for my anime song, there are so many options, but whatever it is, I’m singing the lady’s part. I’m thinking “My Dearest” from Guilty Crown, AKA the only good thing about that series, because I can belt out them high notes with the best of ’em. What’s it matter that I’m a bass? Basses have incredible ranges. It just doesn’t always sound so great on the high end. You made me do karaoke, now you get to roll the dice. Will it be amazing, or will you suffer? Haha!
- Miss Simplice:I haven’t gone out for karaoke in a few years so this’d be a pretty exciting scenario for me. I do love to sing and play the guitar, so much it’s probably why my dog is never in the same room as me, but when I’m out at a karaoke bar, I prefer to have fun and not take things too seriously. So when I sing Prince’s ‘Kiss’, I hope a few of the RandomC crew will join in. And hopefully, when I sing (more like butcher) ‘A little pain’ from the Nana soundtrack, we can laugh together at my cracking voice. Although an all-time favourite, the song still remains a challenge years later!
- Stars: If we’re all being honest here, there’s probably no way I can sing karaoke without embarrassing myself. I’m one of those people who has all of the passion and none of the skill required to be the next Florence and the Machine. When I went out with friends, I used to sing Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” for a lark, but if I were going today, it’d probably either be “Right Hand Man” from Hamilton musical, or “Last Stardust” from Fate/stay Night Unlimited Blade Works. Like I’ve said, I’m not a good singer. I’m going to embarrass myself. But whether I let that stop me from having a good time singing something I love? Well, I’d say that’s up to me.
- Passerby: Wait, karaoke and not embarrass oneself? Does not compute. But if we’re going entirely counter to the spirit of karaoke and avoiding shame is the goal, then we require a strategy. The main part of this strategy is recognising that I can’t sing in Japanese. At all. Therefore the anime song I’d choose would be the third OP of the Deltora Quest anime. An Australian pop song used in the adaptation of an Australian children’s classic? That’s too perfect. I’m representing my country here; anything less would be unacceptable. As for a muggle song, the correct play would be to choose something less known, maybe comedic, definitely slightly offensive, but not explicitly so. The idea is to make sure that I will never be the only one who feels uncomfortable. Mutually assured destruction is the safest option. So maybe I’d choose a Tom Lehrer song, probably I Hold Your Hand in Mine, as the song most likely to stop people from asking me to go karaoke again.
- Pankeeki: Pancakes and singing: if you witness it you’re lucky, because I cannot sing, and those who see it usually cannot remember after a few (read: numerous) drinks—thank god. If I must make a sacrifice for the humour of the crowd though then I shall recite Monoral’s Kiri, because Ergo Proxy is awesome, I might be able to pull it off, and that song, funnily enough, got me through some tough times. As for a “true” normie song it must be “We’re Number One” by Robbie Rotten because if you don’t find yourself singing along from the sheer mimetic catchiness you are a horrible person and should feel horrible. Well, that and my type of music isn’t featured in karaoke bars, but that’s a topic for another day 😛