817 W Washington St, San Diego, CA | Directions 9210332.749719 -117.170990
Neighborhoods: Hillcrest, Western, Western San Diego
What a fun bar! – We stopped by the Lamplighter to do a little karaoke while visiting San Diego. We got there early and it was a Tuesday night - so not as busy as a weekend night. Everyone was friendly, good "mystery shots," and the KJ was rocking. Obviously, there are some regulars and house favorites among the singers, but the KJ kept the rotation going and we all got several chances to sing. Just a nice neighborhood KARAOKE bar. We had one like this for years that closed down, and we miss it a lot! Sure it's a bit of a dive, but it's a fun dive!
BAD DJ!!! – I was SOOOO excited to go out and get my karaoke on... I got to The Lamplighter a little after 9 pm and almost FOUR HOURS later I was still waiting to sing!! Meanwhile I saw people come up to sing 2 and 3 times... the SAME song was even played- WTF!
The DJ kept telling me "you're coming up soon" and "4 or 5 more songs"... After he told me "2 more songs" (four songs later) I went up and he said I was next. I told him not to worry about it because he had completely sucked the fun out of my night and I was leaving.
What a disappointing evening... I should've just went to The Carriage House.
Anywhere but here!!!!!! – Bar tender was decent....service was decent.........but a KJ that demands tips to play your song what a looser.....I wont be back here anymore!!!!!!
Great bar, RUDE obnoxious karaoke host – Bar tenders are usually nice. The bar is super crowded, and set up to be social. If you want to meet a lot of new and cool people this place is awesome. HOWEVER if you like singing karaoke you might be out of luck. The old white guy that hosts on the weekends makes attempting to sing even one song a hassle.
I hate paying a cover to go into this bar on the weekends under the auspices that it's paying for the karaoke host and then that host has the gall to DEMAND $10 to consider playing the song you signed up for 2 hours ago. What happened to tips representing money for a job well done and not an expected part of any transaction not matter how badly it's performed? Also FYI attractive women with nice cleavage will not sway this man in his quest for $10 that you could be using to drink, I've seen it not work twice.
IF you do go and want to sing a song, I recommend you get there at 8:30 (singing starts at 9) to sign up for a song, and tip the guy $1 WHILE he is watching. And if you want to sing a second song sign up about 10 minutes later, as most people don't get there until later to sign up, and he'll be forced to play your song as people build up some liquid courage to sing some Journey song.
I'd be shocked if this guy's car doesn't look like Dalton's from Roadhouse. I pray he's fired or the tip jar is removed so I can re-rate this bar with the 5 stars it deserves.
Great Bar – Cheep drinks ... only a $5 cover charge...very nice bartenters ....widest variety of songs in their Karaoke song book to choose from with over 40,000 Songs!!!......I would definatly rather go to the lamp then downdown and waste all my money
Rude Staff and Karaoke Host – I just moved to San Diego last month, in which I went to Lamplighter for a new firen'd co-worker's going away party on a Wednesday. It was very fun with a great karaoke host. My friends were in town for a convention,, so I brought them to the Lamplighter for karaoke on a Saturday night. I guess they have two different Karaoke hosts, because it was a totally different person hosting. I put my song in at 9 PM and went up to see when I was going to be called up at 12 am, in which he told me that I would sing when he wanted me to sing. He would only let people sing that gave him a 10 or more dollar tip, so you bought drink and had to pay him to sing. I have no problem tipping my karaoke host, but I would rather sing at home on Comcast then tip a rude person like that. He continued to get nasty with people and I ended up just talking to my friends, then the waitress started up with an attitude. She was trying to take drnks that we were still drinking, then she would roll her eyes when we told her that we were still drinking. I still had a good time with friends, only because I did not see them in a while and we bought lots of drinks. I will NEVER go back there again, also I will NEVER recommend this bar to anyone; since I know otherr bars that do karaoke with much nicer people and cheaper drinks. Lamplighter has gone out for me and will NEVER be relit again. LOL!!!
DIVE! – I once got free drinks at this place because the bartender was so drunk she kept forgetting to charge me- 'Nuff said. If you're into dives you'll love it.
Mission Hills dive maintains a clientele of regulars, despite attempted invasions from young local hipsters looking for karaoke. – In Short
It's an intimate space inside, crowded even on the weekend, as the center bar and pool table in the back take up much of the useable space. But people don't come here for the space. They come for cheap drinks and nice, nice people with the kind of cohones it takes to get up and sing Barry Manilow in front of friends and strangers. The karaoke scene is a local favorite, as are the bartenders.
A Great Dive! – I am so glad i live in Mission Hills so I can walk, not drive, home from this bar! The drinks are cheap, the bartenders will drink with you, and the kareoke is the best kind-awful!!! Everytime is a good time at the lamplighter. And when you go, you are one of the crowd-that means you sing with everyone, drink with everyone, and laugh with everyone! I happen to know that one of the bartenders can sing Sinatra like no one i've ever heard and one of the regulars has the voice of Stevie Wonder and sings Superstition like it's his job! It can get a little rowdy, but if you can hang, then go and buy your bartender a shot and PARTY!
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