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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

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# Artist #Sng #Prf Rating Hi Lo σ 0-19 20-39 40-59 60-79 80-100
126 Who0001The Who 1 1
69.0
 
69 69 21.0 0 0 0 1 0
127 White Lion0001White Lion 1 1
68.0
 
68 68 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
128 Holiday, Billie0001Billie Holiday 4 9
67.8
 
94 21 17.8 0 1 1 3 4
129 O'Jays0001The O'Jays 2 2
67.5
 
80 55 19.5 0 0 1 0 1
130 Dc Talk0001dc Talk 1 1
67.0
 
67 67 14.0 0 0 0 1 0
131 DeCastro Sisters0001The DeCastro Sisters 1 1
67.0
 
67 67 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
132 Loggins, Kenny0001Kenny Loggins 1 1
67.0
 
67 67 19.0 0 0 0 1 0
133 Nitty Gritty Dirt Band0001Nitty Gritty Dirt Band 1 1
67.0
 
67 67 24.0 0 0 0 1 0
134 Supremes, The and Four Tops, The0001The Supremes & The Four Tops 1 3
67.0
 
86 36 15.7 0 1 0 1 1
135 Vaughan, Sarah0001Sarah Vaughan 1 2
67.0
 
72 62 23.5 0 0 0 2 0
136 Holliday, Jennifer0001Jennifer Holliday 2 8
66.9
 
88 38 19.0 0 1 2 2 3
137 Russell, Leon0001Leon Russell 1 4
66.5
 
88 51 15.0 0 0 2 1 1
138 Baker, Chet0001Chet Baker 1 5
66.2
 
92 43 18.8 0 0 2 2 1
139 Jobe, Kari0001Kari Jobe 1 1
66.0
 
66 66 26.0 0 0 0 1 0
140 Nicks, Stevie and Petty, Tom0001Stevie Nicks & Tom Petty 1 2
66.0
 
69 63 21.0 0 0 0 2 0
141 Vera, Billy And Beaters0001Billy Vera & The Beaters 1 1
66.0
 
66 66 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
142 Dylan, Bob0001Bob Dylan 3 5
65.6
 
94 17 16.6 1 0 0 3 1
143 Rivers, Johnny0001Johnny Rivers 1 2
65.5
 
76 55 17.0 0 0 1 1 0
144 Darin, Bobby0001Bobby Darin 1 2
65.0
 
72 58 19.5 0 0 1 1 0
145 Heatwave0001Heatwave 1 1
65.0
 
65 65 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
146 Jackson, Alan0001Alan Jackson 1 1
65.0
 
65 65 23.0 0 0 0 1 0
147 James, Etta0001Etta James 4 4
65.0
 
79 58 19.0 0 0 1 3 0
148 McEntire, Reba0001Reba McEntire 3 3
65.0
 
75 55 21.3 0 0 1 2 0
149 Lennon, John0001John Lennon 2 7
64.7
 
93 39 19.0 0 1 3 1 2
150 Doors0001The Doors 1 2
64.5
 
82 47 16.0 0 0 1 0 1
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