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Artists

If you're looking to dispel some persistent American Idol urban legends, forget about Snopes.com or Mythbusters. This section of the WhatNotToSing.com database is the only place to turn.

Let's start by busting the granddaddy myth of all. "Never sing Whitney Houston", the judges and bloggers bleat repeatedly. Never sing Celine Dion, or Mariah Carey, or Aretha Franklin either. Well, maybe. If you click through to each of those artist pages, you'll find somewhat surprisingly that the better Idols have done OK with them (particularly Aretha.) The divas have been harsh mainly on deluded Semifinalists who mistakenly think they can handle the big girls' material.

So are we suggesting that contestants throw caution to the wind and belt out Saving All My Love For You at every turn? Not hardly. For one thing, we don't want hordes of angry Idol fans, their ears bleeding profusely, massing outside our windows with pitchforks and torches. For another, the naysayers are right — sort of. No matter what popular song you choose, you will inevitably be compared to the original artist. If you can't do Whitney justice (and if you could, chances are you'd have been signed to a record deal eons ago), why go out of your way to advertise this fact to 30 million of your closest friends? But, if you can do a decent Whitney cover, don't let some urban legend stop you.

Two artists who've fared considerably less well on Idol are Brian McKnight and LeAnn Rimes. That duo has combined for exactly one performance of 5-stars or 4-stars thus far, out of 20 rated ones total. We consider this no surprise. Most top amateur singers find it easier to pin back their ears and belt out an over-the-top number than to try to match the complex vocal subtleties of more nuanced artists.

[back to top] American Idol  Artists (3x Performances)

Click on a column header to sort by that column.
# Artist #Sng #Prf Rating Hi Lo σ 0-19 20-39 40-59 60-79 80-100
101 McBride, Martina0001Martina McBride 7 14
57.1
 
82 34 19.4 0 4 3 6 1
102 Nilsson0001Nilsson 2 6
50.0
 
82 22 19.8 0 2 2 1 1
103 Keys, Alicia0001Alicia Keys 5 13
46.7
 
81 12 19.1 1 4 5 2 1
104 McCain, Edwin0001Edwin McCain 2 7
59.1
 
81 22 16.9 0 1 2 3 1
105 Supremes, The0001The Supremes 5 11
44.0
 
81 6 16.4 2 2 4 1 2
106 Taylor, James0001James Taylor 3 7
43.4
 
81 17 17.7 1 2 2 1 1
107 Tunstall, KT0001KT Tunstall 2 4
52.0
 
81 34 18.3 0 1 2 0 1
108 Vanilla Fudge0001Vanilla Fudge 1 5
49.6
 
81 6 17.2 1 0 2 1 1
109 Wilde, Kim0001Kim Wilde 1 5
49.6
 
81 6 17.2 1 0 2 1 1
110 Benatar, Pat0001Pat Benatar 3 5
49.2
 
80 22 19.4 0 1 3 0 1
111 Brooks, Garth0001Garth Brooks 8 11
55.4
 
80 25 19.3 0 1 6 3 1
112 Crosby, Bing0001Bing Crosby 1 3
69.3
 
80 59 20.0 0 0 1 1 1
113 Cyrus, Miley0001Miley Cyrus 1 3
49.7
 
80 6 15.0 1 0 0 1 1
114 Green, Al0001Al Green 1 5
56.2
 
80 27 19.2 0 1 2 1 1
115 Shinedown0001Shinedown 3 4
55.0
 
80 32 18.3 0 2 0 1 1
116 Turner, Tina0001Tina Turner 2 9
38.6
 
80 5 16.7 2 3 2 1 1
117 Usher0001Usher 3 3
37.3
 
80 5 17.7 1 1 0 0 1
118 James, Etta0001Etta James 4 4
65.0
 
79 58 19.0 0 0 1 3 0
119 Jessie J0001Jessie J 2 3
58.3
 
79 26 19.3 0 1 0 2 0
120 Mars, Bruno0001Bruno Mars 6 8
43.0
 
79 16 17.3 1 3 2 2 0
121 Morissette, Alanis0001Alanis Morissette 3 3
61.3
 
79 36 22.0 0 1 0 2 0
122 Rascal Flatts0001Rascal Flatts 4 5
52.0
 
79 18 19.8 1 0 2 2 0
123 Aguilera, Christina0001Christina Aguilera 7 10
50.6
 
78 21 18.9 0 2 7 1 0
124 Charles, Ray0001Ray Charles 4 7
57.4
 
78 43 20.3 0 0 4 3 0
125 Coldplay0001Coldplay 3 4
54.3
 
78 19 18.5 1 0 1 2 0
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