The 23 Worst Karaoke Songs: Songs to Never Request at Karaoke

worst karaoke songs
The Worst Karaoke Songs of All Time. Image by Nikola Duza on Unsplash.

Last updated on June 3rd, 2023 at 11:26 pm

Karaoke songs are fun when you pick the right one. You can belt it at the top of your lungs, laughing with an excited audience as you push through the lyrics. Unfortunately, the worst karaoke songs will send the evening downhill.

Prepare yourself to face reality as we dive into twenty of the worst karaoke songs. If one of these is on your list when you go to sing karaoke, remove it as soon as possible for everyone’s sake.

1. “Sweet Caroline” – Neil Diamond

“Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond is a good song, which is why it’s a terrible choice for a karaoke party. Everyone’s heard it a million times, and you’re sure to lose your audience’s interest by the time the last stanza rolls around. Unless everyone is already drunk, then go right ahead and request this tune.

2. “Set Fire To The Rain” – Adele

“Set Fire To the Rain” is one of the worst karaoke songs because the original singer is so good at what she does for her profession. Anyone who attempts to mimic the glorious tone of Adele in a karaoke machine or microphone is sure to fail miserably. Leave this tune out of the karaoke bar. 

3. “My Way” – Frank Sinatra

Frank Sinatra created a landmark piece of music when he released “My Way,” but he also produced one of the worst pieces available for karaoke tracks. The final note is a killer and the downfall of even the most experienced karaoke singer even if it’s one of your favorite songs.

Related: 11 Best Frank Sinatra Songs of All Time

4. “Bohemian Rhapsody” – Queen

“Bohemian Rhapsody” is sung by multiple people with unique voices and intonations. When people who are not Queen try to bring this showstopper to life in drunken karaoke, it never goes well. And to be honest, the karaoke version of this song sucks. If you want a song by a group, choose something by the Beatles instead. 

5. “Baby” – Justin Bieber

This song is as catchy as they come, but it’s not ideal for karaoke. People have heard enough of Justin Bieber’s claim-to-fame number, so you should at least go with a different number by the artist if you choose him when singing karaoke. Plus, it will be tough to keep up with the instrumental version.

6. “Every Rose Has Its Thorn” – Poison

“Every Rose Has Its Thorn” by Poison is another excellent song, but it’s a bit of a downer. If you sing it during karaoke, you might be a bit of a somber addition to the rest of the room and destroy the vibe.

7. “Barbie World” – Aqua

“Barbie World” has an upbeat tone and fun, but it isn’t a karaoke song. Don’t attempt it unless you have an electronic system or karaoke app helping you out and know that you can sing well.

Related: Worst 90s Songs: Which of Your Favorites Made the List?

8. “I’ll Make Love To You” – Boyz II Men

“I’ll Make Love To You” is a very romantic song, but it might not be one of the right songs to sing for karaoke unless you’re alone with the person you care about. It’s a surefire tune to make everyone uncomfortable as it blasts through the stereo. So cross it off your karaoke singing song list immediately. 

9. “Baby Got Back” – Sir Mix-A-Lot

“Baby Got Back” is a fun anthem, but it’s not great to sing in front of your friends. It’s pretty crass and your crowd might run out of energy halfway through as you power through every intense verse. But when competing in carpool karaoke, go for it. 

10. “Margaritaville” – Jimmy Buffett

“Margaritaville” is a cheerful tune that makes listeners feel like they are floating on a beach in a tropical location, drinking a fruity beverage of their choice. In a karaoke setting, it’s one of the most overplayed selections and won’t be the hit you think it will be to your audience as it was in online karaoke at home.

11. “American Pie” – Don McLean

If you sing a karaoke song, don’t pick one that goes on for a long, long time and lowers the mood. “American Pie” breaks the rules with somber lyrics and almost nine minutes of words, sure to cause at least a few people to leave while they wait for the karaoke singers to finish. If the karaoke bar you are at has a shorter rendition, then put this tune as a maybe. 

12. “Baby It’s Cold Outside” – Bing Crosby and Doris Day

Unless it’s Christmas and you want to take a step into controversy, don’t pick “Baby It’s Cold Outside”  by Bing Crosby for your karaoke. It’s one of the worst karaoke songs because it requires a duet partner, and it’s one of the few songs you can only sing during certain times of the year.

If you need duets, we recommend choosing something from the famous musical Grease instead. 

13. “My Heart Will Go On” – Celine Dion

Celine Dion made this powerful ballad popular in the movie Titanic, but she’s one of the few people who can hit the notes. Avoid “My Heart Will Go On” unless you want people covering their ears as you start singing the melody during your karaoke session.

14. “Ice Ice Baby” – Vanilla Ice

No one could ever forget “Ice Ice Baby,” and it’s a tune anyone will recognize by the first few bars. However, not everyone will enjoy picking the classic rapper and overdone song for your karaoke performance. Plus it’s not really a song to sing for belting anyway.

15. “One Week” – Barenaked Ladies

The chorus in “One Week” by the Barenaked Ladies seems doable, which might trick singers into attempting this number at their next karaoke night. However, the rap verses in the tune are tricky to accomplish and might scare your audience away and end karaoke night early. We recommend eliminating this tune from your karaoke songbook. 

16. “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” – The Darkness

Unless you’re excellent at singing in a high-pitched tone and have an excellent set of instruments, stay away from “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” by The Darkness. It’s a song made for advanced singers and not for amateur people trying their hand on a karaoke stage.

17. “Wonderwall” – Oasis

“Wonderwall” by Oasis is an icon, which is why it’s been covered by a million different artists. Get ready to get a few groans unless you have an outstanding performance with an acoustic guitar and hours of practice.

18. “Angel” – Sarah McLachlan

No one needs to be sad while trying to enjoy karaoke, but that’s what singing “Angel” will do. Keep away from this one to keep your spirits high.

19. “I Will Always Love You” – Whitney Houston

“I Will Always Love You” is another incredible song choice, filled with love and deep emotion. However, it’s tricky to hit the high notes, and singers may end up losing their voice in the process.

Plus, let’s face it, you can’t sing like the famed legend Whitney Houston, not even on open mic night. Maybe look into something Beyonce instead. 

Related: How Did Whitney Houston Die? The Details of the Tragic Story

20. “Lose Yourself” – Eminem

Also avoid “Lose Yourself” by Eminem, a rap classic from the 2000s. No one can quite mimic the iconic scratchy voice of the rapper, which is really what makes this tune work so well. In general, you should just avoid Eminem when you do karaoke, it’s just not going to turn out well. 

If you are a guy with a range similar to Eminem, we recommend choosing a song by Ed Sheeran, as it is much easier to impress the ladies with his tunes.

21. “Poker Face”- Lady Gaga

We love Lady Gaga, but this song just doesn’t lend itself to karaoke. If you think you want to sing along to one of her recordings, choose a different one. We also recommend looking into a song by Katy Perry instead–much easier to sing your heart out to. 

22. “Friends in Low Places”- Garth Brooks

Okay, we understand this song is fun, but come on, can you really sing that low? If you felt doubt even for a moment, then this song by Garth Brooks isn’t a song for your karaoke system. 

23. “Don’t Stop Believin’” -Journey

We know you love this song, as does everyone else, but unless you were the first person to the karaoke bar, it has probably already been sung more than once during the night. Plus it’s impossible to hold a candle to Journey lead singer Steve Perry, so it’s better to leave this song off your playlist. 

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Written by Hope Davis

Long-time music lover Hope became a full-time writer in 2020 after being laid off from her regular job due to COVID-19. She now spends her time traveling the world to see her favorite bands while writing about them!


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