I did not expect to like Rob Sheffield’s memoir “Turn Around Bright Eyes” at all. Though I do enjoy the occasional karaoke night, I never sing myself. And even though I live in the self-proclaimed Music City, there aren’t many karaoke bars here. Too many singer/songwriters, perhaps.

But at the base of this novel, there is grief. And that I can relate to. Finding a means to deal with grief on an individual or national level is a Herculean task. But you often have no choice but to move forward. And you never know what exactly it will take to shove you in the right direction.

Time is the ultimate healer, but music is a close second. I read recently that listening to ten minutes of classical music is equivalent to taking Valium. And so I’ve been listening to a lot of classical music lately to relieve my anxiety. Karaoke may not be like taking Valium, but clearly there is some benefit to be gained, something therapeutic and uplifting.

Karaoke may be an unlikely catalyst for healing, but it’s clear that it worked for Sheffield. And he is a treasure trove of music trivia, pop culture trivia, and NYC too. This was part of the attraction for me too: I love all things 80’s and all things New York.

So, whether you are a fan of karaoke or not, there is still a lot to love in this memoir. Just one caveat: beware of ear worms.

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