Nov 01
TechKaraokeSF Posted by Laura Iriarte

I am a karaoke virgin no more!

Wednesday night, October 29, 2008, I went to my first TechKaraokeSF! I heard Tara Hunt talking about it last month at Social Media Club and I thought it sounded fun, so I had to check it out! TechKaraokeSF is an open event-your only qualification-is that you’re in the tech industry-which covers a lot of fields!

TechKaraokeSF is organized by John Yamasaki, Chief Location Wrangler, Tara Hunt, Chief Crooner Wrangler, and Sandra Arriaga, Chief Enthusiasm Wranger. John was a wonderful host, he came and introduced himself to me and added me on twitter instantly. He also checked in with me through the night and encouraged me to sing.

TechKaraokeSF is a place where those in the tech industry can come and let their hair down and mingle with others for a night, instead of sitting in their home or cubicle staring at the computer screen! Alchohol consumption is a must, as well as your duty to rock the mic! Be a rockstar or popstar for the night, it’s your choice!

I’ve noticed that a lot of people in tech seem to have moved to the San Francisco area from other parts of the country or world. It can take awhile to make new friends. This event gives them the chance to get out and meet others in their field in a fun environment.

I wanted to go to TechKaraokeSf, but-I was a little nervous-since I had never been and never tried karaoke before.  I did some research and looked at Annie’s Social Club’s song list.  I picked out a couple of songs that I thought I could sing.  When I was in school I was always in choir, then in high school, acapella choir.  I wasn’t the number one soloist, but I could sing. Yes, that was a long time ago. I also am pretty comfortable on stage in front of a crowd-still-this was something different.

It was a little slow getting started, but once it did it was tons of fun!  I thought it would be more of a networking event-but honestly-it was not easy to have much of a conversation with people while the karaoke was going on.  Plus, you want to watch and listen to whoever is on the stage anyway-after all-that’s what karaoke is all about!

I did meet a couple of people-before things got started.  Morgan Brown is Director of Marketing with TURNHERE internet video.  He and I were the first ones on the scene.  Next, Michael Selvidge, PR Dude with VSC consulting arrived.

Daniel Lieberman, President and CEO of bitpusher kept encouraging me to give karaoke a try. He said he’s only been karaoke-ing a couple of months and is hooked on it now!

Our karaoke hostess with the mostest was Eileen.  She was fantastic!  She kept the party moving! Eileen also dances with a burlesque group of cheerleaders (I wish I could remember their name! I love burlesque!) and taught me something I will now use forever-if you lean forward slightly with your shoulders your double chin will disappear in photos! Yes!

I signed up for a song, “Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You”, by Lauren Hill. The thing is, I ended up third on the list, and I wasn’t ready yet.  The crowd was still small, and I hadn’t even finished one glass of wine.  Not that I drink much, but I needed two for this.  I told Eileen I wasn’t ready yet and she was very kind.  She said to let her know whenever I was ready.  I sat, I watched, I listened, I took lots of pictures.  I drank my wine.  Daniel said, “Just go for it-it’s not going to get any easier later”.  So, I did.

I have no idea what I sounded like? But, I got through it just fine. I sang, I danced a little, I saw other people in the audience singing along with me, and when it was over, people clapped! It wasn’t bad at all! I didn’t sign up for another song, but one was enough for starters. The rest of the night I enjoyed watching and listening to everyone else. It was great night, nice to see Karen Hartline, event coordinator with Mashable, Tara Hunt, blogger at Horse, Pig, Cow and author of the upcoming book, The Whuffie Factor, and Nick Starr, and nice to make some new friends. Mitu Khandaker is one of my twitter friends, who is now a real life friend! And Lisa made me dance with her!

Everyone was dressed pretty low key, mainly jeans with a nice top.  Tara Hunt, on the other hand, arrived in her Halloween costume, a bumble bee!  I must admit, she was as cute as a bug!

The crowd was wonderful.  I truly wish I had the chance to meet everyone personally.  Everyone was friendly and fun with a great sense of humor!

I’ll be there next month, join me if you can!

To see more pics from the event, please visit my flickr photostream

So tell me, have you ever tried karaoke? If you did, what song would you sing?



One Response

  1. Lisa M Says:

    Great pictures. It looked like you had such a fantastic time!! Good for you for singing. My friend used to have a karaoke machine but we would only sing at her house. Although once I did sing karaoke in a bar in San Francisco. I was pretty drunk. Maybe I’ll get enough guts to do it again lol.