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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

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 Carey, Mariah and Boyz II Men0001Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men 1 1
32.0
 
32 32 12.0 0 1 0 0 0
102 Carey, Mariah And Houston, Whitney0001Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston 1 3
62.3
 
70 55 21.3 0 0 1 2 0
103 Carlile, Brandy0001Brandi Carlile 1 1
50.0
 
50 50 20.0 0 0 1 0 0
104 Carlton, Carl0001Carl Carlton 1 3
35.0
 
61 9 17.3 1 1 0 1 0
105 Carmen, Eric0001Eric Carmen 1 6
49.2
 
92 11 15.3 1 2 0 1 2
106 Carnes, Kim0001Kim Carnes 1 1
48.0
 
48 48 24.0 0 0 1 0 0
107 Carpenters0001Carpenters 4 6
58.5
 
92 2 15.2 1 1 0 2 2
108 Cascada0001Cascada 1 3
54.3
 
72 36 20.7 0 1 1 1 0
109 Cash, Johnny0001Johnny Cash 3 5
50.6
 
75 26 25.8 0 1 3 1 0
110 Casinos0001The Casinos 1 1
29.0
 
29 29 14.0 0 1 0 0 0
111 Cassidy, Eva0001Eva Cassidy 1 4
81.8
 
90 77 18.3 0 0 0 2 2
112 Chaplin, Charlie0001Charlie Chaplin 1 4
35.3
 
48 14 13.8 1 1 2 0 0
113 Chapman, Tracy0001Tracy Chapman 1 3
74.0
 
90 60 14.3 0 0 0 2 1
114 Charice0001Charice 1 1
42.0
 
42 42 21.0 0 0 1 0 0
115 Charles, Ray0001Ray Charles 4 8
61.4
 
87 43 20.1 0 0 4 3 1
116 Cheap Trick0001Cheap Trick 1 1
28.0
 
28 28 9.0 0 1 0 0 0
117 Cher0001Cher 3 3
51.0
 
84 23 15.0 0 1 1 0 1
118 Chesnutt, Mark0001Mark Chesnutt 1 9
38.3
 
68 13 17.3 2 2 3 2 0
119 Chicago0001Chicago 1 1
27.0
 
27 27 21.0 0 1 0 0 0
120 Church, Eric0001Eric Church 1 1
32.0
 
32 32 20.0 0 1 0 0 0
121 Clapton, Eric0001Eric Clapton 2 2
18.5
 
28 9 15.5 1 1 0 0 0
122 Clare, Alex0001Alex Clare 1 1
67.0
 
67 67 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
123 Clarkson, Kelly0001Kelly Clarkson 12 23
44.3
 
89 6 15.2 5 7 3 5 3
124 Clean Bandit0001Clean Bandit 1 1
41.0
 
41 41 19.0 0 0 1 0 0
125 Cleveland, Ashley0001Ashley Cleveland 1 1
84.0
 
84 84 16.0 0 0 0 0 1
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