“Everyone wants to sing. It will take 25 years for the whole world to sing.” These seemingly two opposing sentiments is how Derek Slep of Singray Music USA describes how he convinced his way to starting his karaoke/music career. Slep really does believe that everyone wants to sing, even comically asserting that it is an involuntary process, “There is an innate desire for a singer to sing.”
Technology, License, Content, The Singer and The Song. They are all interdependent upon each other, and always have been. People have emotional ties to songs of their youth. The publisher owns the song, and karaoke jockey’s have the sound recordings. Why people want to sing and what it symbolizes for them is summed up by saying, ”Anthropologists have not figured out why we need singing, but its a way to emotionally communicate,” and essentially, he’s right.
Karaoke Anywhere-let’s bring Karaoke to mobile. Karaoke Anywhere was the first CDG capable player for IOS.
Karaoke enthusiasts downloaded the app when it was first launched and then were stumped as to why they couldn’t import their iTunes playlists and other mp3 files into the app. The difference is the type of file most karaoke tracks use, the CDG.
Answer? Karaoke Anywhere +Store. After addressing this feedback, a store was created for Karaoke Anywhere so that users can get their favorite karaoke tracks, and were instantly available in the app. Customers then said they wanted to record themselves and use it on platforms other than their phone. But most of all, feedback revealed that users didn’t understand why a karaoke track was $1.99 a piece.
Soundchoice’s Slep equates the karaoke industry and its battle with piracy to the metaphor of a broken stool-he begins, “think of a three-legged stool, we’re off the ground but not comfortable and can’t see the top of the table. A three-legged stool can go two ways: down or up. We want to grow it up”
Soundchoice has always been interested in anti-piracy, but were not always able to engage the power players before. The karaoke industry needs a new leg to stand on, because one has been dulled by piracy of Karaoke tracks. So they offered this model to “see” how to combat the issue:
Latshaw is no stranger to technology, he wrote his first computer program in 1977 at nine-before the pc existed. After falling in love with karaoke in 2001, he began mentioning his expertise to the dj’s and kj’s he met; four years later Latshaw systems was born.
His first prototype of the product “SongbooksLive.com” reveals the mentality of most VJ’s and their desire to keep sharing without crediting to a minimal. He then developed a way for the file to include to whom it was licensed.
Karaoke is unique however, and it has an advantage over other items that are typically shared. It’s public, unlike an ebook.
To stray away from the CD age and successfully take stake in the digital realm:
stick to MP3+G this tech needs to stick around for many many years to come. Stay away from video, it’s just pictures and too easy for someone else to edit
If youre going to offer downloads, you’ll want to zip them because it makes for a neater package.
this is something microsoft knows and Latshaw is willing to share: older programs can’t keep up with newest zip compression- so it’s advisable to stick to the oldest format.
And finally, something Latshaw learned a long time ago: above all else “Keep the Singers Happy”
48 hours of video are uploaded to Youtube every minute. Coe Exectutive Producer, Doug DeLuca of Jimmy Kimmel Live knows how viable a Youtube Channel can be and wants the karaoke industry to take note-possibly with a karaoke Youtube Channel
3 things must come together for this to happen
All of the “rogue karaoke people” need to come together to meet the demands of the social-internet age for collaboration.
The karaoke industry should also join forces with user-generated content-allow people to video themselves singing karaoke, upload it, and then facilitate the conversation.
Bring karaoke to big events, such as high-profile sporting events, and allow people to join in, video it and upload it.
Youtube and other online, user-generated content is a way to make karaoke social-as it’s meant to be.
The Singing Machine is a company that specializes in karaoke hardware. Because of this, they have been affected by the karaoke industry roller coaster. Bernardo Melo recalls 2006 as a particularly rough time for the industry, and having to combat the different hardships that followed: retailers expecting lower prices for karaoke hardware, the perception that karaoke is a “seasonal business,” and the pirating of karaoke tracks. Melo doesn’t blame the users, however, he puts it on the industry players to adapt to the industry. “Karaoke has a unique demographic-from two until you die, people can sing.” He suggests that the karaoke industry players have to react quickly, and could even us pirating as a marketing tool by adapting to the user.