This post was sponsored by A Girls Guide to Cars. Please note that, as always, any personal opinions reflected in this post are my own.
Music is important to me and plays a big role in my life. There are songs I love that take me back to a moment in time. There are songs I love that cheer me up. There are songs that I relate to so strongly I could have written the lyrics myself, were I creative and talented enough. When I need to clear my head, my car is my go-to place. I turn up the stereo and drive, letting the sound get into my head and temporarily push out any troubling thoughts.
If you guessed that a car’s sound system is important to me, you guessed correctly. Sound quality is one of the first things I notice or check out. It’s so important that I once had a car that I put a stereo into that was worth more than the car. I appreciate, need, and demand, quality sound in my car. I need to have the ability to turn up the volume to drown out my terrible singing without sacrificing quality. I need to hear all of the notes, highs, lows and everything in between, when I’m listening to a song.
I met up with one of the folks from Harman while at the New York International Auto Show. Harman is a well-known manufacturer of premium audio systemsfor the home and car, with top brands including Harman Kardon, JBL and Revel. On this day I had the opportunity to learn more about the Harman/Kardon brand.
Harman Kardon’s brand expression embodies their passion for creating elegant and captivating sound experiences that fully engage the senses. To do this they rely on design and technology. For this brand, design is far more then pencil and paper. The Harman/Kardon design team met with the Kia Stinger design team, in order to design, build and install an audio system that both looks and sounds good. After all, the Stinger is a sleek and sexy looking car and it just wouldn’t work to have ugly speakers throughout its interior. Harman Kardon created speakers that blended perfectly with the interior of the car right down to the polished metal.
Harman Kardon’s QuantumLogic technology turns the interior of the Kia Stinger into a 7.1 channel surround sound experience. What does that mean? Well, it means you get to hear the music as it’s written and intended to be heard. It’s well known that the popular satellite radio as well as mobile phones digital compress audio files, impacting the quality as well as what we actually hear. Harman/Kardon’s Clari-Fi restoration technology repairs music so we can hear it as was intended by its creators, which means we hear the music in fabulous surround sound. That sound comes from speakers strategically located throughout the car, including subwoofers mounted under the seats.
Harman Kardon challenged us to put one of their premium audio systems to the test while at the auto show. This was a challenge unlike any other I’ve ever participated in. First, we put together playlists of our favorite songs. I filled my playlist with favorite car karaoke songs. Then we connected our phones to the hot new Kia Stinger and did live car karaoke in the middle of the auto show floor with the windows down.
I don’t sing well. I am the first to admit that. I don’t sing in public in front of people, the sole exception to that being if I’m at a concert. The thought of singing in the middle of the auto show actually made me a bit queasy. But I have promised myself I’d try and get out of my comfort zone more, and that I’d try to do some video. And so I chose to face my fears.
Armed with my tentative willingness to face the challenge and Fadra, my partner in the challenge who fortunately knows how to do things like live video, I settled in the super comfy driver’s seat of the Kia Stinger. I connected my phone to the Stinger’s USB port and immediately gained access to my playlist full of fun songs that I have sang in the car for years. And so it began.
(photo credit: Mary Moore of A Girls Guide To Cars and Raising Dick And Jane)
Singing in the middle of the auto show floor was nerve-racking and fun. I saw all of the other people passing by – smiling, nodding, laughing and even a few singing. We kept on and went through my entire playlist. The only things that really slowed us at all were a few occasions where we debated on whether or not to advance or skip a song due to licensing issues, and when another journalist asked us to please lower the volume because they were shooting video nearby. It was no big deal as we were near the end of my playlist, plus he asked when a song with a perfect answer was on anyway.
The quality of the sound (and I don’t mean my singing) was fantastic. The sound was full and clear during the entire time we were in the car, which was a good 35+ minutes. All of the different music that we listened to sounded great. Fadra enjoys music from movies and shows and even though I didn’t know almost any of her music I did know that it sounded good. My own playlist consisted of different types of music from the 70s, 80s, 90s and current. Every single song sounded exactly as it should have.
Well I’m nervous about going my first Facebook live so to get over that fear I’m going to perform LIVE in the middle of the New York International Auto Show. I’ll be showcasing the sound of harman Kardon speakers in the Kia Motors America Stinger. Yikes!! Hold me! I apologize in advance for bad vocals. #harmankardonplaylist #HKxKia #sponsored
Posted by Valerie Gray on Thursday, March 29, 2018
If you are looking for some fun songs that are perfect for singing in the car, either solo or with accompaniment, be sure to grab my Car Karaoke playlist on Spotify.
How important is having a quality sound system to you? What are your favorite songs for car karaoke?
Win Harman Kardon Headphones in the Playlist Challenge!
Love music? Love to share your tunes? Simply share this playlist on social media with the hashtag #HarmanKardon #sweepstakes, or add a song suggestion to our playlist in the comments section of this post. All social media posts set to ‘public’ and posted on social media platforms Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and containing the hashtag #HarmanKardon #Sweepstakes are qualified entries; up to 5 comments on this post per IP address are qualified entries; all entries are entered to win a pair of Harman Kardon Headphones. Winner will be chosen at random from all entries, so enter as often as you like! And, be sure to check out these posts to see how JBL and Revel bring a whole new level of listening to your car and for additional chances to win!
Participants can enter to win a pair of Harman Kardon Headphones by publishing a public social media post on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #HarmanKardonPlaylist #sweepstakes, or leaving a song suggestion comment on this post before midnight EST, April 15, 2018 to be entered to win. There is no limit to social post entries; post comment entries are limited to 5 per IP address.
No purchase necessary to enter. Only one (1) winner will be chosen at random from among valid entries. Challenge open only to US residents age 18 and over. Winners will be notified by email or direct message by April 16, 2018. Winners who fail to respond to notification within seven (7) days will be disqualified and a new winner will be chosen. Winners must provide a valid US shipping address for prize shipment. Winners may be asked to provide identification to receive their prize. Prize value up to $299 per prize, not exchangeable for cash or other items. Void where prohibited and subject to applicable law.