Christian van hemert

Sad Karaoke encourages depressing songs for good causes | Music | Pittsburgh

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Photo: Matthew Bucholz

Sad Karaoke

Sometimes it feels good to be sad, put on the funniest song you can think of, and feel your feelings. With that sentiment in mind, Andrea Laurion and Matthew Buchholz created Sad Karaoke, a night where you can get together with all the moodier people in town and sing along to your favorite heartbreaks.

After a successful first event on March 19, Sad Karaoke returns, this time on Saturday April 30 at Golden Age Beer Co. in Homestead. The event not only gives people the opportunity to sing along to songs that would kill the vibe at any other karaoke party, but also raises money for various local and national organizations.

In a press release, Buchholz says the latest event raised $337 for RAINN, or the National Rape, Abuse and Incest Network, a nonprofit sexual assault organization.

“We had a great turnout; something like 60 to 70 people performed for over three hours,” adds Buchholz, best known for his pop art company Alternate Histories and for DJing the popular dance party In Bed By Ten.

At the time, $5 donations encouraged to Sad Karaoke will benefit Write Pittsburgh, a local collective that amplifies the voices of writers and gives them the opportunity to lead workshops, do readings, and more.

Sad Karaoke is a great time for everyone involved, but there are rules for participating, Buchholz says.

The first rule is that songs should be sad. What constitutes a sad song is pretty universally known. But if you are not sure, there are many sad song playlists on streaming platforms that you can use. The question of what constitutes a sad song is “at the discretion of the hosts”.

Other rules include “no irony”. The purpose of the event is to get emotional in front of friends and strangers. So don’t get up there and make a joke out of it.

Additionally, Sad Karaoke operates on a “first come, first sung” basis. A sign-up sheet for songs goes up at 6 p.m. and singing begins at 7 p.m. Singers are encouraged to
limit their songs to about five minutes.

Finally, check YouTube to make sure your song choice has a karaoke version.

Regardless, the Sad Karaoke Facebook Page says that, if you missed the last event, “This is your chance. Dry your tears and sing along.”


Sad Karaoke. 7 p.m. Registration at 6 p.m. on Saturday, April 30. Golden Age Beer. 337 E. 8th Avenue, Homestead. Free. Suggested donation of $5. Search “Sad Karaoke Returns” on Facebook