Rest of the Best: Houston's Top 6 Karaoke Bars

Categories: Best of Houston

Usual July 5.jpg
Here's something maybe you didn't know about karaoke culture: It's considerably more involved and nuanced than most anyone outside of it knows.

For example, were you aware that, same as there are karaoke bars that aim to attract laughably bad singers, there are some that draw stunningly good, as well as some that try to land right in the middle of that scale, as well as some... times a thousand?

There are. So with this list, we've compiled a piece from each of the karaoke rainbow. There are nice places and trendy places and suburban places and gay places and more and more. Your favorite spot get left off? Leave it in the comments. And remember, it's "You're an idiot," not "Your an idiot."

6. The Usual

The Usual is a perfectly serviceable bar in The Heights. It is located on the outer fringe of the Washington Corridor, standing in enjoyable contrast to its neighbors' pomposity. There is a) no dress code; b) no cover and c) an emphasis on beers, specialty and otherwise.

I suppose someone might be able to argue that this is the one interchangeable addition to the list, but that doesn't mean it isn't deserving. Matter of fact, that might kind of be the reason that it belongs. It is perfectly bland and perfectly palatable. Just good people having good fun singing badly, as the karaoke gods intended.

5519 Allen, 281-501-1478, Web site


Moes July 5.jpg
5. Mo's Place

Yes, let's everyone give a hand to Mo's Place, the only* suburban bar to rate on any Best Of list in the vast history of Best Of lists. Mo's, run by the hyper-affable Mo Jeloudar, a Persian man with a genuine appreciation (and understanding) of cowboy culture, is the ultimate in Katy nightlife, so it stands to reason that they'd dominate the karaoke market out there too.

Expect hearty crowds and tomfoolery on the microphone. You might luck your way into a proper performance, but you'll more likely find yourself among the masses, laughing and cringing and laughing again as an accountant stumbles through Prince's "Purple Rain."

*Probably not the "only," but you get the point. It doesn't happen a lot.

21940 Kingsland, 281-392-3499, Web site

Location Info

Map

The Usual - CLOSED

5519 Allen, Houston, TX

Category: Music

Guava Lamp

570 Waugh, Houston, TX

Category: Music

Mo's Place

21940 Kingsland Blvd., Katy, TX

Category: Music

Smitty's Cafe & Bar

3333 Raleigh, Houston, TX

Category: Music

Spotlight Karaoke

5901 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Music

Genji Japanese Restaurant and Karaoke Bar

11124 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

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13 comments
Jimmy-John
Jimmy-John

If you find yourself in the Heights and you're looking for The Usual you won't find it.

Jennifer
Jennifer

Thats where you can get youre d-bag pass stamped upon entry...FoxGetPositionWork.blogspot.com

Mark Tran
Mark Tran

half of these aren't even karaoke bars, but bars with karaoke nights... and glitter karaoke isn't even mentioned? FAIL

Benito
Benito

Well you clearly went to Spotlight only one time and got too hammered to realize that Mr. Lee is a badass. He actually only gets up there like twice a night to sing, and the real karaoke crowd there loves it. And stop bitching with excuses for why you had to wait all night and didn't get your song called up. Its because theres 127 other people putting songs in too. I guess you are the one clown sitting in the corner who doesnt realize that you can slip the DJ dude $10 and he'll put you up on the list. Maybe you shoulda got there before 11:15pm with unrealistic expectations of just waltzing right up onstage and singing some lame ass Nickleback song wearing your tapout t-shirt. I hope you go to PJs like all these other clowns are posting. Thats where you can get youre d-bag pass stamped upon entry.

Ralphie
Ralphie

Wow. There's so many false assumptions I don't even know where to begin. I've been there multiple times and at other karaoke bars I've never had to pay to get into the rotation. Don't know why Spotlight is so special...take a pill man.

Bob
Bob

Hasrsh dude. Are you in some sort of Kaeaoke gang?

Ralphie
Ralphie

My problem with Spotlight is that the owner gets up to sing about every fourth song. He's a nice man and a good singer, but how about giving the guests a shot? For my money, I'd say PJ's is the place to be for Friday night karaoke.

Blake
Blake

No PJ's? Dang.

duffbeergrrl
duffbeergrrl

PJ's on W. Gray is home to a pretty rocking karaoke night upstairs on Fridays.  Just sayin...

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