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ODonoghues Irish Pub karaoke venue review on www.where2sing.com

O'Donoghues Irish Pub karaoke

I expected to find O'Donoghue's Irish Pub easily at its stated White Pages address on Clarence Street, Sydney, but I walked up, and I walked down...

No pub. I walked into a cyber cafe, checked the website again, walked to the appropriate street number and found, instead, a large office building. A phone call later, and the pub was to be found on the corner of Erskine and Kent, a block away. Irish humour, perhaps?

It's one of those trendy city venues, everything new, and everything Irish - or plastic Irish, at least. Occupying a street corner position, and set a bit back from the road, it has country style tables and bench seats outside on both streets, and inside is bright, modern, tastefully decorated and totally un-Irish except for the reproduction Irish paraphernalia and bright green cutout lepricorns tacked to the walls.

As I walked in I could see Anthony, a regular contributor to this site, singing, and the sound was excellent. The karaoke is set up in a kind of large alcove towards the centre of the pub and at one end of the bar. Only a couple of metres in front of the karaoke area is a large ramp running crossways through the pub to take patrons from the higher entrance area where I stood down to the lower bar section. The high and broad sides to the ramp effectively partition the karaoke into its own area, and I could just see the sound being mixed from another tiny alcove tucked under some stairs leading to an upstairs bar.

A young guy with a genuinely Irish accent but also a genuine lack of knowledge about Irish beers served me, then Anthony finished his song and headed towards me. As the applause settled, his thunder was slightly stolen by the other (non-mixing) host explaining to him through the mic, and at length that, should he like to hear country songs sung really well, he must come and see an excellent country band in which, modestly, that particular host was starring. His modesty was also slightly further tested by his repeated reference to 'you people' when addressing his audience collectively, but, as if to underline his expertise, he chose to sing the next song.

He sung well, and the sound was truly excellent (if a little loud for the venue and number of patrons). Although the pub looked to be three-quarters empty, I counted about forty people inside tucked into the various sections and alcoves, and maybe the same number again outside away from the music. I also counted four different floor levels, offering plenty of comfortable seating for those who chose to sit and chat.

The rotund and gregarious host finished his song to the amount of applause normally given to karaoke hosts who hog the mic, and we were subjected to some rather lengthy introductions and changeovers as a couple more of 'you people' were allowed to sing. . . .(full story on where2sing.com)


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