In any successful night of debauchery there is always a point in which everyone within, and sometimes without, the taproom raises their voice in concert. A few minutes in which every conversation is put on pause for a choir of drunkards to pour their hearts and souls out in chorus. This purest event of forgotten inhibitions is known as….
The Dive Bar Sing Along.
The brief moment in time where every single person in an ill-lit, alcohol drenched, room can drop their stage fright and do their best rendition of I Will Always Love You by Whitney Houston. A simple act of commonality and unity that would make John Lennon proud.
Without further ado, here are my picks for The Top 5 Dive Bar Sing Along Songs of all time.
5. Undone – The Sweater Song by Weezer
I know, I know, I know what you’re saying, â€˜But Say It Ain’t So is WAY more fun to sing than The Sweater Song!’. The thing is, I’d agree with you on any other day of the week. It is more fun to sing while in the shower or in your car on the way to work. But we’re not in those places. We’re in a bar. And in a bar, we drink.
Most people don’t have the greatest enunciation after a few shots of Jameson and screaming â€˜If you want to destroy my sweater. Woah-a-woah-a-woah…’ over and over again is much easier than â€˜This way is a waterslide away from me that takes me further every day.’
Go ahead. Try it.
4. What’s Up? by 4 Non Blondes
Some pretty amazing bands came out of the nineties and this wasn’t actually one of them. But 4 Non Blondes did grace us with one of the best tunes to bellow while intoxicated. Featuring the dusky voice of Linda Perry guiding us along, What’s Up is one of the easiest to remember and funnest to yell songs that can be found on a jukebox.
Of some contradictory note, What’s Up was listed by Blender as one of the “Top 50 Worst Songs Ever” while still having reached #14 on the Billboard Hot 100 List.
Meh. I don’t even want to write about it anymore. I just want to sing it… while drunk… in a crowd full of people.
3. Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond
More of a karaoke jam than a tavern tune, Sweet Caroline makes the list out of respect for the raw power of a disorderly mob punching their fists into the air while shouting, â€œBuh! Buh! Buuuuh!â€ in unison. Neil masterfully marries a sonnet of budding love with an optimally interactive chorus.
To further validate my point, Sweet Caroline is played during the eighth inning of every game at Fenway Park. I’m not sure where you can find a more concentrated group of lushes lifting their voices than a stadium overflowing with boozed up Bostonians.
When Neil starts singing, good times never seemed so good. So good! So good! So good!
2. Piano Man by Billy Joel
It is my firm belief that Billy Joel wrote this song to be sung in a bar – proof found here.
Think about it – It’s a guy in a bar, singing about being a guy in a bar, to the people that are there to listen to this guy sing in a bar, which we will now all sing in a bar. It’s like standing between two mirrors that are turned in to face one another – a true paradox of musical genius endlessly wrapping in on itself.
To this day, even the most introverted are unable to resist belting out the chorus of this quintessential barroom ballad. Even if you’re not a Piano Man, we’re all in the mood for a melody and this brews got us feelin alright.
1. Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen
It should be no surprise to find Bohemian Rhapsody at the top of the list, given you’ve most likely sung this song more times than all of the others on this list combined. By melding a ballad, an operatic passage and a heavy rock section into a single song of awesome Queen provided generations to come with a masterpiece of music to sing along to.
It should be considered a momentous achievement to craft an anthem with no chorus wherein scores of sloshed songbirds can still recall lyrics to memory when they can’t even remember their own address for the taxi guy.
I don’t think this one really needs further explanation. We all recall how aptly Wayne’s World demonstrated the power of the rhapsody for the pre-party and have personally experienced our own reactions to Freddie’s clarion voice ringing over the speakers. Please head-bang responsibly.
So join me for a song and a drink and if…
You don’t know the song – Listen to the first chorus, and sing along when it comes back around.
You can’t remember the lyrics – Make them up.
Or you’re the only one singing – Well that’s impossible.
And if you find that your opinion differs from mine, just remember that it is because your opinion is wrong, but feel free to leave some comments with your thoughts anyhow!