70s karaoke us funkadelic, glam, classic rock, big basslines, hammond organs…it’s some smooth yet soulful R&B that has such heart in it you ache to hear it. It’s synth sounds with strings as back-up, and a surprising amount of falsetto.
Gobs of songs from the 70s are simply too difficult for karaoke. Even songs we all think we know get annihilated nightly, and I can’t yale it anymore. Thus, there is no ABBA here. Bohemian Rhapsody is out, too. (Has anyone besides Queen ever sung that song in seriousness?)
There are no B sides here, either. Tale that elitist High Fidelity nonsense right on outta here!
If you stick to this list and similar songs, you’ll be welcomed back for karaoke night, guaranteed.
#19 Hotel California The Eagles (1976)
Extremely familiar, popular tune that I literally felt obligated to include. It’s long and has a big musical interlude, but what can I say? Crowds love it.
Why it’s great: Really familiar and popular, plus it’s relatively easy to sing (mostly because anyone over 30 or so has heard it a thousand times before).
#18 Superstition Stevie Wonder (1972)
This funky, rockin’ song off of Talking Book is a prime example of the 1970s-era organ playing out a very funky, Danceable rhythm. Nearly left off the list for it’s high difficulty level – there are some screamed notes in more than one place. Practice before taking this one out on the road.
#17 Stayin Alive – Bee Gees (1977)
Another great dance tune, from 70s icons the Bee-Gees. These are some falsetto-singing brothers from down under, and that’s why it’s not higher up on the list. THis is fun, recognizable, but VERY HARD for most men (and some women) to sing.
#16 You’re So Vain – Carly Simon (1972)
Mystique surrounds this song. Years ago Simon auctioned off the name of the “vain” subject, donating the money to charity. Beware if you have a high voice – it sits in a very low range. Bottom Line: Great for low voices! Harder than it sounds.
#15 Suffragette City – David Bowie 1972
Karaoke-appropriate David Bowie. Bowie must make the list, but for karaoke you’ve gotta go for a recognizable, mainstream sound that also isn’t tortuously long. Comfortable mid-range song, but very fast! It’s also one of those songs that everyone thinks that they know word for word until they’re facing the monitor.
#14 Play That Funky Music – Wild Cherry (1976)
SUCH a fun song! Everyone loves when it’s on and can’t help tapping, nodding and singing along. It isn’t one of my favorites only because it’s over five minutes long, so I had to dock a few oints. It’s moves well , though, so give it a shot.
#13 I Will Survive (1978)
A Karaoke staple. It would have been in my top five if it weren’t so darn hard to sing! Also, in my experience it’s sung by very, very inebriated, sometimes aggressively sad women. It’s better if you cheer up your friend with it that trying it mid-break-up.
#12 Ain’t No Sunshine – Bill Withers (1971)
Beautiful arrangement, wonderful voice! There is so much 70s going on. R & B – wise it;’s got that softer drum. Moist karaoke recording use the strings arrangement. It’s short and sweet and perfect and with the additional instruments, so 70s. Just watch out for the “I know” part – a lot of people stumble on it, so try it at home first. Solid Pick
#11 Magic Man – Heart (1976)
I’m gonna be blunt: this is kind of a terrible karaoke song. I just couldn’t bear to leave Heart off of this list. “Magic Man” is much friendlier that something like “Barracuda,” but still takes a strong pair of lungs and an understanding that you might blow out your voice on this one. Save it for the end of the night.
#10 Come And Get Your Love – Redbone (1973)
Bunch of us were love love lovin’ this song after it was featured in Guardians of the Galaxy and it rode that soundtrack bump all the way to wedding a karaoke night playlists. Easy, nice little tune.
#9 Imagine – John Lennon (1970)
All hail king John, except he wouldn’t have wanted you to because this is basically a communist manifesto. It’s still got some lovely ideas in it that will make people tear up. It’s easy to sing, and lovely to hear. One of the few slower songs that’s okay for karaoke…sometimes.
#8 Don’t Stop – Fleetwood Mac (1977)
Christine McVee wrote this up-tempo tune after her (in)famous divorce. Yes, this comes from Rumours, break-up album to end all break-up albums . Taylor Swift and Ariana Grande, eat your hearts out – you got nothin’ on Fleetwood Mac. Good for solo, group, male or female voice. Medium difficulty.
#7 Joy to the World (Jeremiah Was a Bullfrog) – Three Dog Night (1972)
This is a great song. A quintessentially 70s Classic Rock sound from a Quintessentially Classic Rock band. Everyone will sing along, guaranteed. If you’re going to sing a 3 dog night song, choose this one. “Never Been to Spain” will lead to regret. Don’t do it.
#6 Jolene – Dolly Parton (1973)
LOVE this song. Probably the only true country song on this list, it was written by Dolly after a bank clerk flirted with her then-new husband. She met a red-haired fan named Jolene and the rest is a really up-tempo song that’s not bouncy but more frantic. Covered ad nauseum, skip those pretenders and sing the he original. Prepare to be singing faster than you expected.
#5 Rock N Roll All Nite – KISS (1975)
KISS has enjoyed an incredible amount of success given their dearth of talent. Take advantage, novice singers! If you can shout drunkenly while reading lyrics off of a monitor, you’re up! This song is great for its singability and driving drumbeat. A fun song that everyone can sing along with.
#4 Let’s Stay Together – Al Green (1972)
I can’t hear this without thinking of this moment.
Medium difficulty song. It gets a little high at times, plus you want that smooth sound. If you’ve been singing in the car and think you can tackle it, have at it. It’s got a great sound.
#3 Sweet Home Alabama – Lynyrd Skynyrd (1974)
Immediately identifiable from just the first couple of notes, this song gets cheers every time it comes up on karaoke night. You’d think the bars were full of southern transplants. It’s really fun even with the political message hidden in that second verse. Great example of Southern Rock, easy to sing.
#2 Brick House – The Commodores (1977)
Pure hip-shakin’ goodness! Funky beats, funky lead singer. Although it’s not too hard to sing, you absolutely must BRING IT in the attitude department! It’s still okay to sing this in bar so long as you don’t leer at anyone afterwards.
#1 Stuck in the Middle – Stealers Wheel (1972)
This song could come from no other decade than the 70s, period. IT’s got a nice groove and moves along well – no dead spots, just fun. A great karaoke song. Watch out for those falsetto “Plea -ea -ea – ea -ea -eases,” boys. Did you know these guys were Scottish? Yup.
Didn’t see your favorite here? Let me tell you, this was a tough, tough list to generate. I left a LOT of funky beats and gritty grooves off the page to bring you righteous tunes suitable for the novice and songstress alike. So many righteous tunes in the 70s, man.