Karaoke bars | Places to do karaoke in Chicago
If you're looking to show off your vocal skills, we've found the places for you. From the upscale private room at Murasaki to the wacky karaoke nights at Hamburger Mary's Attic, there are plenty of spots to belt it out.
After 22 years as Cafe Shino, this Gold Coast stalwart got a makeover and has emerged as a sake lounge, complete with two dozen varieties of rice wine, a private karaoke room and a menu of otsumami, traditional Japanese small plates (we're fans of the crispy-edged hot-dog bites, plummy baby octopus, spicy salmon hand rolls and tofu-topped udon noodles). For a primer on sake, ask manager Kerry Tamura, who's happy to steer you in the right direction.
Every night at 7:30pm
Pop into any bar boasting seven days of karaoke and you're likely to hear more than your fair share of Bon Jovi. Thankfully, this Lakeview parrot-head hangout offers ample patio space (heated in the winter) to escape juiced-up choruses of "Sweet Caroline." This place is good for satiating drunk American Idol desires, but bad for house cocktails. Stick to your beer of choice over Todd's odd concoctions.
Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays 11pm–3:30am; Saturdays 11pm–4:30am
This long wooden bar is helmed by a few middle-aged women who, on Sundays, mix huge batches of kamikazes and sell them for $2 a pop—but the real draw here is karaoke. If you get there and the door’s locked, don’t get discouraged. Just ring the bell over and over again (sometimes the bartenders can’t hear it over yet another version of “Don’t Stop Believin’”).
Every night at 8pm
The decor of this spacious karaoke and darts bar is reminiscent of roller rinks circa the 1980s: pink and aqua neon signage, wood paneling, fantastic mullets, and all the nachos and pizza you can handle. Drinks are ridiculously cheap, and the karaoke book is chock-full of corny ’70s and ’80s hits with a dedicated stage for performing, making this place a natural choice for getting drunk and stupid with large groups of people.
Fridays and Saturdays at 9:30pm
This unmarked hole-in-the-wall is the kind of neighborhood spot you’d easily pass by until someone in the know introduces you to its discreet charms: old-school matrons working the bar, cheap drink specials and weekend karaoke jamborees. FYI, it’s also an unofficial hangout for same sex–loving ladies.
Wednesdays–Saturdays at 7pm (Available on demand 7 days a week)
True to form, Brando’s Speakeasy is anything but what it seems. It’s a lounge, but conversation flows more like a neighborhood haunt. Its website promises a martini bar, but the list is mysteriously MIA (most people seem to down beer anyway). The decor and vintage posters throw it back eras, but the karaoke and late-night dance music add modern flair. While it’s not Don Vito Corleone meets Al Capone as the name might imply, Brando’s is definitely a mash-up.
Sundays and Wednesdays 9:30pm
Don't expect this upstairs bar to vaunt a granny's attic vibe. Given that it sits above the gay-friendly Hamburger Mary's, it's more like a tranny's attic what with the rampant kitsch, rowdy karaoke nights and fringe theater dominating the Attic's tiny stage.