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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
176 Righteous Brothers0001The Righteous Brothers 2 5
38.4
 
77 5 18.0 2 1 0 2 0
177 Rihanna0001Rihanna 6 14
53.6
 
87 9 19.9 2 1 5 2 4
178 Robinson, Smokey And Miracles0001Smokey Robinson & The Miracles 5 14
58.9
 
87 35 21.2 0 1 8 3 2
179 Rogers, Kenny0001Kenny Rogers 2 3
41.0
 
47 29 21.7 0 1 2 0 0
180 Rufus0001Rufus, Featuring Chaka Khan 3 6
53.7
 
85 38 18.3 0 1 3 1 1
181 Sedaka, Neil0001Neil Sedaka 3 5
43.6
 
92 15 15.4 2 1 1 0 1
182 Simply Red0001Simply Red 1 5
55.4
 
75 25 20.0 0 1 1 3 0
183 Sledge, Percy0001Percy Sledge 1 8
56.1
 
91 19 18.3 1 1 3 2 1
184 Springsteen, Bruce And E Street Band0001Bruce Springsteen & The E St. Band 2 4
45.0
 
59 21 17.0 0 1 3 0 0
185 Stewart, Amii0001Amii Stewart 1 3
40.3
 
69 15 15.7 1 1 0 1 0
186 Supremes, The and Four Tops, The0001The Supremes & The Four Tops 1 3
67.0
 
86 36 15.7 0 1 0 1 1
187 Swift, Taylor0001Taylor Swift 3 4
38.3
 
67 9 18.5 1 1 1 1 0
188 Tears For Fears0001Tears For Fears 2 5
58.8
 
94 17 15.0 1 1 0 1 2
189 Train0001Train 2 4
31.5
 
54 9 16.8 1 1 2 0 0
190 Tritt, Travis0001Travis Tritt 3 4
49.3
 
60 35 18.8 0 1 2 1 0
191 Tunstall, KT0001KT Tunstall 2 4
52.0
 
81 34 18.3 0 1 2 0 1
192 Turner, Ike And Tina0001Ike & Tina Turner 4 11
69.5
 
86 36 18.2 0 1 2 4 4
193 Twillie, Carmen0001Carmen Twillie 1 3
55.0
 
89 24 20.7 0 1 1 0 1
194 U20001U2 4 8
41.5
 
67 9 19.5 2 1 3 2 0
195 UB400001UB40 1 4
66.0
 
93 21 16.8 0 1 0 1 2
196 Uncle Kracker0001Uncle Kracker 1 3
52.7
 
84 29 21.0 0 1 1 0 1
197 Usher0001Usher 3 3
37.3
 
80 5 17.7 1 1 0 0 1
198 Van Halen0001Van Halen 2 4
36.3
 
67 10 18.8 1 1 1 1 0
199 Westlife And Diana Ross0001Westlife & Diana Ross 1 3
29.3
 
50 14 17.3 1 1 1 0 0
200 Williams, Andy0001Andy Williams 1 3
46.3
 
70 26 19.7 0 1 1 1 0
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