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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 Adams, Oleta0001Oleta Adams 1 4
51.3
 
82 13 19.3 1 0 1 1 1
102 Badfinger0001Badfinger 1 5
55.6
 
82 39 20.4 0 1 2 1 1
103 Black Crowes0001The Black Crowes 4 6
54.8
 
82 31 18.7 0 2 1 2 1
104 Carey, Mariah0001Mariah Carey 8 18
50.0
 
82 14 19.9 1 4 8 3 2
105 Cher0001Cher 3 3
50.3
 
82 23 15.0 0 1 1 0 1
106 DeGraw, Gavin0001Gavin DeGraw 2 7
47.4
 
82 12 19.0 1 0 4 1 1
107 Four Tops0001The Four Tops 3 11
53.5
 
82 6 16.4 2 1 2 5 1
108 Hill, Faith0001Faith Hill 9 11
45.8
 
82 20 17.4 0 6 1 2 2
109 McBride, Martina0001Martina McBride 7 14
57.1
 
82 34 19.4 0 4 3 6 1
110 McCartney, Paul0001Paul McCartney 3 6
60.2
 
82 19 20.5 1 0 2 2 1
111 Nilsson0001Nilsson 2 6
50.0
 
82 22 19.8 0 2 2 1 1
112 Keys, Alicia0001Alicia Keys 5 13
46.7
 
81 12 19.1 1 4 5 2 1
113 Maroon 50001Maroon 5 6 9
48.7
 
81 4 19.8 1 2 3 2 1
114 McCain, Edwin0001Edwin McCain 2 7
59.1
 
81 22 16.9 0 1 2 3 1
115 Shinedown0001Shinedown 3 4
55.3
 
81 32 18.3 0 2 0 1 1
116 Supremes, The0001The Supremes 5 11
44.0
 
81 6 16.4 2 2 4 1 2
117 Taylor, James0001James Taylor 3 8
40.1
 
81 17 16.8 2 2 2 1 1
118 Tunstall, KT0001KT Tunstall 2 4
52.0
 
81 34 18.3 0 1 2 0 1
119 Vanilla Fudge0001Vanilla Fudge 1 5
49.6
 
81 6 17.2 1 0 2 1 1
120 Wilde, Kim0001Kim Wilde 1 5
49.6
 
81 6 17.2 1 0 2 1 1
121 Benatar, Pat0001Pat Benatar 3 6
52.0
 
80 22 19.0 0 1 3 1 1
122 Brooks, Garth0001Garth Brooks 8 11
55.4
 
80 25 19.3 0 1 6 3 1
123 Crosby, Bing0001Bing Crosby 1 3
69.3
 
80 59 20.0 0 0 1 1 1
124 Cyrus, Miley0001Miley Cyrus 1 3
49.7
 
80 6 15.0 1 0 0 1 1
125 Doobie Brothers0001The Doobie Brothers 2 3
53.7
 
80 19 18.0 1 0 0 1 1
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