219 Ave. A, nr. 14th St.; 212-353-9500
It’s really small and there’s no stage, meaning an all-inclusive attitude prevails here, with friends, strangers, and bartenders crowding around the microphone. To make it your own, rent the entire bar for a private party.
23 W. 32nd St, fourth fl., nr. 5th Ave.; 917-497-9474
An incongruously elegant karaoke bar in the heart of K-Town, well suited to self-conscious singers, who can perform right from their seats at the bar, politely ignored by the quiet regulars. The songs ($2 each) are listed in a phone-book-size volume and include most American karaoke favorites, as well as Korean pop songs.
Karaoke One 7
29 W. 17th St., nr. Sixth Ave.; 212-675-3527
The flickering candles, shimmering tiles, and exposed brick walls are certainly a contrast to your average sing-along box. Also, the 80,000-plus video jukebox gives your iPod a run for its money—especially when you shuffle into the French, Italian, Hindi, and Tagalog folders.
135 W. 41st St., nr. Broadway; 212-278-0988
This lounge-y subterranean karaoke den, tucked into an otherwise sterile midtown block, comes from the people behind the Bamn! Automat in the East Village, and carries the same futuristic vibe. Also, they have Guitar Hero!
104 Bayard St., nr. Baxter St.; 212-732-2384
No other karaoke bar exerts the magnetic pull on both hard-core Asian mike fiends and downtown hip kids that Winnie’s does. You’ll witness a steady dose of Mandarin pop songs favored by the regulars as well as by the titular Winnie herself.