Dictionaroke, and Other Sing-alongs

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imagesNancy Friedman writes:

Dictionaraoke: A musical form in which an instrumental (karaoke) version of a song is accompanied by online dictionary-pronunciation audio files. A portmanteau of dictionary and karaoke, which is itself a portmanteau word. [The literal meaning of karaoke] is “empty orchestra,” from the Japanese word kara, “empty,” and ōkesutora, the Japanese rendering of orchestra.

Dictionaraoke was invented in 2001 by the Snuggles Collective, which a press release describes as “a diverse group of musicians communicating through the Internet” who were “inspired by the recent addition of spoken word audio clips to the Merriam-Webster and Microsoft Encarta online dictionaries.”

The rest of the article describes other variations on karaoke, including a regular movie sing-along in Seattle called Cineoke! Check it out.


Jeremy Hatch is a writer, musician, and professional bookseller leading a cheerful, aimless life in San Francisco. He is the Junior Literary Editor of the Rumpus and has a blog which he updates once in a while. More from this author →