Dec. 16, 2021

Time Out's Top 50 Karaoke Songs of All Time: (#48) "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction," in the style of the Rolling Stones

Time Out's Top 50 Karaoke Songs of All Time: (#48)

If you're wondering what this is referring to, check out the previous posts in this series: Intro,
#50, #49.

Title: "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
Artist: The Rolling Stones
Album: Out of Our Heads
Year: 1965

It's hard to discuss the Rolling Stones without pointing out, in 2021, they are problematic as fuck as a band. More has been said about that, and better (here's just one written example, but if you're into rock music history, both Episode 19's guest Christian Swain's Rock N Roll Archaeology and Andrew Hickey's A History of Rock Music in 500 Songs cover the territory).

And, frankly, had the song been "Brown Sugar," and not this, I would have skipped it entirely.

Is karaoke a young person's game? Yes, and no. Walking into some bars, I feel (and look) like a spring chicken, and in other bars, I am decidedly The Old Guy. But... here's the thing. I can name at least ten people younger than me who I've seen do "Paint It Black," or "Sympathy for the Devil" on karaoke nights.

This song, though? This song is catchy as hell. 

Here's the thing--I don't think selling out is possible. I really don't. If you make something, it's yours to do with as you want.  But there is something both chuckle-worthy and sad to hear a song with a pretty anti-advertising sentiment...

When I'm watchin' my TV
And a man comes on and tells me
How white my shirts can be
But he can't be a man 'cause he doesn't smoke
The same cigarettes as me

...later end up in commercials hawking candy bars and hotel chains. 

This song has a really low barrier of entry, which is nice. It's pleasing to sing: just about anyone can pull off the progression of "'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try." It has a nearly sing-song, nursery rhyme ease. What makes it great for karaoke, though, is a good version? One that captures that guitar and bass distortion? The focus is the music more than the singer. And everyone knows it--it's rare that someone will ask "hey, what was that song you just sang" unless they're about to take the piss about how poorly you did it. 

Date Attempted: 12 December 2021
Location: Spaghetti Benders; Indiana, PA

How It Went: All in all, not terribly. I once again tried to do it in the original range for the song, and that's always a mistake for me, but because it's a little more growl-y than sing-y, it wasn't too bad.

Karaoke Difficulty Level: 6.

Again, you don't really need pipes to put out many Rolling Stones songs. 

Karaoke Fun Level: 7.

I was going to say another six at first, but I realized that was a lie. It's a fun, catchy song. I probably won't ever do it again, but I am also not ruling it out.

Does it belong?

Unequivocally. I might suggest replacements like "Paint it Black," "Sympathy for the Devil," or a few others, but this hits a lot of the things that makes a good karaoke song. It's familiar, it's catchy, and it's both fun enough and not too difficult.