International Law

Frank Sinatra Song Blamed for Lethal Karaoke Bar Violence


Booze and karaoke has proven to be a lethal combination, in the United States and elsewhere, when a singer belts out an unpopular tune.

But one Frank Sinatra song is viewed as so dangerous in karaoke bars in the Philippines that the rules of etiquette prohibit its performance, for fear that another “My Way Killing” could result, reports the New York Times.

Sinatra’s signature song has been banned by some bars and is voluntarily avoided by a number of karaoke singers—even where it isn’t prohibited—out of a sense of self-preservation, the newspaper recounts.

The lyrics of “My Way,” which were written especially for Sinatra by Paul Anka, have a “triumphalist” tone that may exacerbate bar situations, according to Roland Tolentino, a University of the Philippines pop culture expert

The Philippines is a very violent society, so karaoke only triggers what already exists here when certain social rules are broken,” he tells the Times.

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