Killing “My Way”


Karaoke is big in the Philippines.  In America, it’s often performed by a staggering drunk trying to sing to the machine with a mike in one hand, a bottle in another, and intoxicated with mad delusions of talent.  You’d better not try that in the Philippines which takes its karaoke seriously – sometimes, deadly seriously.

Karaoke machines are all over the nation in streets, grocery stores, and sometimes, even standing alone on country roads.  Unfortunately, this singing is not universally appreciated by everyone in the country.  Arguments, brawls, stabbings, fights, and even an occasional murder are common.

The reasons? People criticizing others’ singing, alcohol, crowding, and machismo all contribute to the mayhem.  But the unquestioned leading cause of the killings is Frank Sinatra’s classic hit, “My Way” – and no one seems to know why.  Many karaoke bars have eliminated the song from their play books and most singers won’t even try to warble it.

Imagine, old Blue Eyes can still start a barroom brawl years after his death.

Deaths-by-karaoke are not limited to the Philippines. In the last two years,  a Malaysian man was fatally stabbed for hogging the microphone at a bar and a man from Thailand murdered eight people after the group sang John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads” a few times in a row.

Now, I can understand the Thai man – but the rest seem mighty strange.

5 Responses to “Killing “My Way””

  1. Bill says:

    With most songs, it’s virtually impossible to sound as good as the recording. With “I Did It My Way”, it’s pretty easy. Poor Frank had lost his voice many years before recording that tune, and anyone with a sliver of talent can do it better. Hence, its popularity.

    It’s after the booze has been flowing for a while that the real no-talents march up to the mike, and they quite naturally attempt something they actually have a chance of pulling off. Unfortunately, it is after the booze has been flowing that people become more prone to violence.

    A perfect duet.

  2. Joe Belle-Isle says:

    FRank had lost his voice!!! Watch out behind you from now on for a crowd of anonymous Phillipino’s in some N.Y. Parking lot that weren’t even old enough to remember macArthur. If it says “Fwank,” on it it’s GREAT!

  3. Joe Belle-Isle says:

    Of course if someone sneaks up behind you frank and calls FWANKY!! you’d better start saving those wine corks for your Butt.

  4. Bill says:

    Yeah, Frank and Spam (the food). Go figure.

  5. Joe Belle-Isle says:

    Before they invented cans the Army cooks had keep a herd of spigs along on campaigns.

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