Karaoke is an accidental invention. Its story begins in the Japanese city of Kobe. In one of the small restaurants, the musicians turned on a tape recorder for visitors with recordings of their songs. The visitors, in turn, sang along, and it brought them real pleasure. The term “karaoke” was formed as a result of the merger of two abbreviated Japanese words: “kara” (from “karappo” – empty) and “oke” (from “okesutura” – orchestra).
Japanese drummer Daisuke Inoue, considered the father of karaoke, never studied music theory. He played just by ear, repeating. In the early 1970s, Daisuke was part of a band that played in bars and clubs in the nearby city of Kobe. In Japan, the audience usually sang along with the bands responsible for musical entertainment for nightclubs. Inoue came up with the idea to record a series of musical foundations and encourage clients to forget their musical inadequacies and shyness to sing along to the music. With the help of technical contrivances, the most dissonant voices were avoided or muffled. He made his first karaoke machine with musical equipment from a car, a box of coins and a small amplifier.
This is how the karaoke phenomenon was born. This happened in 1971, when the president of a steel company offered Daisuke to take over musical entertainment on a business trip that Inoue was unable to attend, but supplied the businessman with music recorded on tape.
The first machines used tapes for recording, and the system was later implemented with CDs, laserdiscs, and later DVDs.
Judging by what the father of karaoke says, he never thought that his invention would be so successful. His main goal was to rent out 200 karaoke machines to a cafe and make money making music. Many may think that he missed the opportunity of his life, but deep down, perhaps it’s just a matter of point of view. He made nothing from the multi-billion dollar industry created by his invention and has no regrets. But at the same time he continued to work in the industry that he gave rise to.
Philippine citizen Roberto del Rosario received a patent in 1983 for a device called “karaoke”.
However, Daisuke Inoue is very happy to hear that karaoke has a therapeutic effect in nursing homes and hospitals and helps lonely or depressed people. It is a way of relieving stress that makes a person feel better. Or a way to fulfill a secret desire to be an artist, no matter how badly he sang.