Karaoke first appeared in Japan nearly 30 years ago on top of the economic boom in the country. In the beginning, it was a form of entertainment mainly for office staff, which provided them with a place where they could meet with colleagues, have drinks and sing popular songs. Gradually, it has spread globally and was commercialized, and today we can most often speak about karaoke culture in China. There, it is one of the typical forms of entertainment. Karaoke bars are particularly popular places to visit, not only for young people, but also for middle-aged people who want to relax after a hard day spent in the office, and in some cases, entertain the customers with whom they have just closed a deal. At present, it is estimated that there are about 100 thousand karaoke establishment in the country dedicated solely to this.
Aivan Karaoke Bar
In Plovdiv we can’t boast of such a huge spread, but there are still some places for which we can write a few words. In fact, the inspiration behind the creation of this text was our friend, British film director Stephen Lewis Simpson, who is a big fan of this type of culture. According to him, one of the bars in the City under the hills is the reason for staying in Plovdiv. He himself has a rich experience with various establishments in the most diverse corners of the world, but he really falls in love with Aivan Karaoke. He sings there at least 2-3 times a week and this experience is a very big part of the fun he has in Plovdiv.
According to Stephen, there are three things that determine how good a karaoke bar is. First, it must have a large selection of songs and offer the best available versions of the tracks. Aivan, who owns the bar, is probably the most famous karaoke DJ in the country, and that's why the bar's doing so well.
Secondly, you need to be able to hear well, and in Aivan they have a good monitor and also always fix the levels of different singers, which helps both high and low voices.
Thirdly, they always follow the order of the customers' songs, so everyone gets a fair chance. In addition, the bar is the perfect size for a karaoke bar as it is not so big that people have to wait all night for their performance.
The entrance fee is only 3 BGN, and the drinks are better than almost anywhere in Kapana. The bartender is charming and adds in a unique way to the family atmosphere of the bar and the sense of community.
Another place where you can test your skills with the microphone is Marmalad. There isn’t karaoke every night there, and the venue is often a stage for various pop and rock artists. Their selection of songs is not so great, and because of their wider area, you will need to wait more for the song you have chosen.
Both establishments are not typical karaoke bars, but they do occasionally host such events, with the DJ being the same. They are more an option for spending a fun evening with your friends than if you are really passionate about the karaoke culture.
It opened at the very beginning of last year and the concept behind it is to be a bit more old-fashioned. Drinks are very affordable and again karaoke is not its central idea. There are also quizzes, student parties and more.
Karaoke is also one of our ideas for a date that is not dinner and a movie. Do you have any impressions from any of the places?