Minneapolis, MN – Local barfly Ted Johnson was once again reduced to looking down at his shoes in embarrassment after witnessing his roommate attempt to sing “Purple Rain” during karaoke night at Vegas Lounge last week.
“I went to get a beer, and then…I heard those opening chords,” Johnson recalled, visibly cringing. “My back was turned to the stage, but I knew it was Chris. He always fucking does this.”
Reports indicate that reactions from other bar patrons ranged from raised eyebrows to muffled “what the fucks” as the roommate, 28-year-old Eden Prairie native Chris Hartman, desperately encouraged the bar to sing along to the 1984 Prince hit. Many declined the invitation.
According to Johnson, this was not an isolated incident.
“He does this thing where, like…I don’t think he realizes that the song has verses, too…he just sort of mumbles everything until the chorus,” he explained. “It’s his go-to song and he somehow hasn’t learned the words for it yet.”
“You just gotta hunker down and ride out the storm,” said Vegas Lounge bartender Darci Carlson when asked about the experience of hearing someone just absolutely butcher a modern classic. “There’s a lot of awkward dead air, but once you get to the guitar solo, everybody’s home free."
“I mean for God’s sake, you’re from the suburbs,” Johnson said through clenched teeth. “Just…sing Sweet Caroline and leave the bittersweet R&B ballads to the professionals.”
When asked about his song choice, Hartman described himself as a “big fan of Prince since he died.”
Johnson’s lease isn’t up until November 1st.