Karaoke is a lot of fun in itself but sometimes it's good to take a break from the usual and spice things up a bit. Some karaoke hosts will use props, or offer incentives for people to sing an obscure song, as part of their regular routine. Here are few other ideas.

Karaoke contests have earned a bad reputation. One big reason for this is the lack of impartial and competent judges. Most contests end up with hurt feelings and accusations. For these reasons I recommend that contests be avoided.

If you insist on holding a contest make sure that it is advertised ahead of time and not sprung on the crowd at the last minute. Find judges who do not frequent the bar where the contest is being held to help avoid accusations of favoritism. Set the judges all at one table so the singer know who and where they are.

Make sure the singers know exactly what they are being judged on and the point system being used. Rules should be prominently placed or printed out and handed to the contestants.

Karaoke Roulette
This is the most common karaoke game. Those who participate will end up singing a song not of their own choosing. There are several ways the songs can be selected.

One method is for the karaoke host to have a bag full of slips or chips with song titles on them. The participants will take turns drawing a song from the bag and they must sing that song in its entirety or be eliminated.

Another method is for each participant to write down a song title on a slip and place it in a bag. The slips are shaken up and each singer will reach in and pull out a song that they must sing.

A third method is to get the audience (non-singers) involved and have them write down one song each to be added to a grab bag.

A fourth method is to use two grab bags. One bag contains chips with karaoke disc ID numbers and the second bag contains chips numbered 1-9. Draw one chip from each bag to get the disc ID and the number of the song on that disc that the person must sing.

There are no "winners" in karaoke roulette but often the bar will award a free drink to those who complete their song.

Gong Show
Yes this is a contest but since the objective is to perform as awfully as possible the contestants are not likely to take it seriously. The contestants may use props, wear costumes, and do parodies of their songs. The judges my gong the performance but not until at least 60 seconds into the act and then someone comes out with a big hook and escorts them off the stage. The idea is to be so terrible that you're interesting enough for the judges not to gong you.