kar·​a·​o·​ke ˌker-ē-ˈō-kē How to pronounce karaoke (audio)
kə-ˈrō-kē How to pronounce karaoke (audio) ˌkä-rä-ˈō-(ˌ)kā How to pronounce karaoke (audio)
: a device that plays instrumental accompaniments for a selection of songs to which the user sings along and that records the user's singing with the music
a karaoke machine
also : a form of entertainment involving the use of such a device (as in a bar)

Example Sentences

That bar has karaoke on Saturday night.
Recent Examples on the Web More rotation can be enjoyed upstairs — in the form of songs — where the restaurant stocks six karaoke rooms and a full bar. Tom Sietsema, Washington Post, 17 May 2023 Bri also built a karaoke room in this weird kind of uninhabitable little space next to the laundry room. Adam Tschorn, Los Angeles Times, 12 May 2023 The final episode will be preceded by a primetime special of carpool karaoke featuring Blackpink and Diddy. Sophia Scorziello, Variety, 18 Apr. 2023 For Mixtape Medley, Chlöe and Halle took turns delivering booming choruses like a karaoke version of Verzuz. Larisha Paul, Rolling Stone, 18 Apr. 2023 Perhaps the only member of the Succession team who didn’t have a series peak in this episode was Brian Cox, but last week’s episode was full of great Logan moments, from his regal speech in the newsroom to his pained efforts at manipulative karaoke reconciliation. Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 10 Apr. 2023 Live music, entertainment, and activities run the gamut from yoga to biking and rock climbing to karaoke parties. Lauren Dana Ellman, Travel + Leisure, 11 Mar. 2023 Novo Oeste is a welcoming L.G.B.T.Q. bar with live music, karaoke and burgers. Jack Nicas, New York Times, 2 Mar. 2023 The event was complete with a stage and a disco ball — where Hilton hosted karaoke. Kelly Wynne, Peoplemag, 20 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'karaoke.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Japanese, from kara empty + ōke, short for ōkesutora orchestra

First Known Use

1977, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of karaoke was in 1977

Dictionary Entries Near karaoke

Cite this Entry

“Karaoke.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/karaoke. Accessed 30 May. 2023.

Kids Definition


kar·​a·​o·​ke ˌkar-ē-ˌō-kē How to pronounce karaoke (audio) kə-ˈrō-kē How to pronounce karaoke (audio)
: a device that plays music to which the user sings along and that records the user's singing with the music

More from Merriam-Webster on karaoke

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