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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
201 DeShannon, Jackie0001Jackie DeShannon 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 16.0 0 0 0 1 0
202 Idol, Billy0001Billy Idol 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 28.0 0 0 0 1 0
203 Joy, Vance0001Vance Joy 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 22.0 0 0 0 1 0
204 London, Julie0001Julie London 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
205 Mann, Tamela0001Tamela Mann 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 22.0 0 0 0 1 0
206 Moore, Melba0001Melba Moore 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
207 Nixon, Marni0001Marni Nixon 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
208 Simple Minds0001Simple Minds 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
209 Tallest Man On Earth0001The Tallest Man On Earth 1 1
62.0
 
62 62 25.0 0 0 0 1 0
210 Bon Jovi0001Bon Jovi 7 13
61.9
 
86 15 17.7 1 1 2 6 3
211 Baker, Chet0001Chet Baker 1 6
61.7
 
92 39 19.0 0 1 2 2 1
212 Womack, Lee Ann0001Lee Ann Womack 1 2
61.5
 
77 46 17.5 0 0 1 1 0
213 Charles, Ray0001Ray Charles 4 8
61.4
 
87 43 20.1 0 0 4 3 1
214 French, Nicki0001Nicki French 1 3
61.3
 
73 54 19.7 0 0 2 1 0
215 Morissette, Alanis0001Alanis Morissette 3 3
61.3
 
79 36 22.0 0 1 0 2 0
216 Jessie J0001Jessie J 6 8
61.1
 
87 26 18.4 0 1 3 3 1
217 Collective Soul0001Collective Soul 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 24.0 0 0 0 1 0
218 Day, Andra0001Andra Day 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 16.0 0 0 0 1 0
219 Eldredge, Brett0001Brett Eldredge 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 16.0 0 0 0 1 0
220 Ellison, Lorraine0001Lorraine Ellison 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 23.0 0 0 0 1 0
221 Four Seasons, The0001The Four Seasons 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 23.0 0 0 0 1 0
222 Madcon0001Madcon 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 23.0 0 0 0 1 0
223 Michaelson, Ingrid0001Ingrid Michaelson 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
224 Three Dog Night0001Three Dog Night 1 1
61.0
 
61 61 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
225 Withers, Bill0001Bill Withers 3 8
60.9
 
90 18 18.1 1 1 1 3 2
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